While intersectionality is increasingly an object of inquiry in social movement research, few scholars examine leadership’s role in enabling intersectional mobilization. This article draws on data from archives and in-depth interviews (n = 18) to explore the importance of leadership succession in transforming the Chicago Abortion Fund between 1985–2015. Specifically, it explores two types of succession: (1) from grassroots or community-embedded leadership to bridge leadership (which connects the community to the organization), and (2) from bridge to formal leadership. Our study shows how these two types of succession were instrumental in operationalizing margins-to-center organizing. We present our findings in a series of conjunctures or episodes to elucidate how Black women and women of color moved gradually through different forms of leadership. In so doing, they changed the framing and praxis of the organization from a social service agency to a radical reproductive-justice social movement organization.

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