Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence

Brady Campaign and Brady Center To Provent Gun Violence timeline

The Brady Campaign and the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence has a long and rich history of inspired and strong leadership on gun violence prevention, championing the reduction of gun death and injury in America for 40 years.;xNLx;;xNLx;Dr. Mark Borinsky, who had been robbed and nearly killed at gunpoint, founded the organization in 1974 as the National Council to Control Handguns. Pete Shields became chairman in 1978 following the ;xNLx;murder of his twenty-three-year-old son, Nick, in 1974. The organization was then renamed Handgun Control, Inc. in 1980.;xNLx;;xNLx;In the assassination attempt on President Reagan on March 31, 1981, Jim Brady, then serving as ;xNLx;Reagan’s press secretary suffered a serious head wound that left him partially paralyzed for life. Jim and ;xNLx;his wife, Sarah, joined the organization in the mid-1980s and have been fighting for sensible gun laws to protect you, your family and your community ever since.;xNLx;;xNLx;In November 1993, the organization scored a major federal legislative victory, on behalf of the American people, with the passage and signing of the Brady Law that requires background checks on all gun sales made at federally licensed firearm dealers.;xNLx;;xNLx;In 2001, the organization was renamed the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence to recognize Jim and Sarah Brady’s commitment and courage to making America a safer place for us all.;xNLx;;xNLx;Dan Gross, the current president, has been working to prevent gun violence since his brother was shot at the Empire State Building in 1997. Dan founded the Center to Prevent Youth Violence (originally known as Pax) after his brother was shot. He joined the Brady Campaign and Center in February 2012.;xNLx;;xNLx;Other chairs and presidents who have led the organization include: Charles Orasin, Richard M. Aborn, ;xNLx;James A. Guest, Robert J. Walker, the Honorable Michael D. Barnes and Paul Helmke. ;xNLx;;xNLx;Download the full timeline from 1974 to 2013

1974-06-05 14:46:13

The National Council to Control Handguns (NCCH) is founded

The National Council to Control Handguns (NCCH) is established by Dr. Mark Borinsky, a victim of gun violence.

1980-03-13 13:52:31

The National Council to Control Handguns is renamed Handgun Control, Inc.

1981-03-30 13:52:31

Jim Brady shot and seriously wounded

Jim Brady, press secretary to President Ronald Reagan, is shot and seriously wounded during an assassination attempt on the President.

1983-05-05 13:52:31

A new gun violence prevention organization

The Center to Prevent Handgun Violence (CPHV), an educational outreach organization dedicated to reducing gun violence, is founded as a sister organization to Handgun Control, Inc.

1987-02-04 13:52:31

Original Brady Bill introduced

The original Brady Bill is introduced for the first time by Representatives Edward F. Feighan (D-OH) and Senator Howard M. Metzenbaum (D-OH). In its first floor vote the bill is considered for inclusion as an amendment to the Omnibus Drug Initiative Act, but it is stripped from the legislation on September 15, 1988, by a vote of 228-182.

1989-05-10 13:52:31

Legal Action Project founded

The Center to Prevent Handgun Violence establishes the Legal Action Project to take the fight against gun violence into the courts.

1991-01-17 13:52:31

Sarah Brady becomes Chair of the Center to Prevent Handgun Violence

1993-11-30 13:52:31

Brady Law signed by President Clinton

The Brady Bill, which required a five-day waiting period and background checks on handgun purchases, is signed into law after a six-year battle.

1994-09-13 13:52:31

Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act signed

President Clinton signs into law the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994, which included the first-ever federal limitations on military-style assault weapons.

1998-05-07 13:52:31

NICS goes into effect

The National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) for gun sales goes into effect. Background checks are extended to long guns such as rifles and shotguns in addition to handguns.

1999-04-20 13:52:31

Columbine High School massacre

In the wake of the Columbine High School massacre in Colorado, the U.S. Senate passes legislation to expand background checks to all gun show sales. Activists in Colorado and Oregon led successful campaigns to pass ballot measures expanding background checks to sales at gun shows in the November 2000 elections.

2000-05-14 13:52:31

Million Mom March

The Million Mom March takes place on Mother's Day. Hundreds of thousands of supporters gather in Washington, D.C. and elsewhere to call on lawmakers to pass stronger gun laws.

2000-06-14 14:46:13

Smith & Wesson Agrees to Reform Business Practices

As a result of cases brought by the Brady Center on behalf of cities and counties, gun maker Smith & Wesson agrees to make sweeping changes to its business practices. The settlement agreement was announced at a White House press conference with President Clinton.

2001-03-08 13:52:31

A change of name

Handgun Control, Inc. and the Center to Prevent Handgun Violence are renamed the Brady Campaign and Brady Center, respectively, in honor of Jim and Sarah Brady and their commitment to make America safer.

2004-03-10 13:52:31

Brady Center celebrates legal victories

The Brady Center wins historic settlements in three lawsuits brought by victims of gun violence, including the victims of the Beltway sniper shootings. The settlements yield a record $4.4 million from three gun dealers and gun maker Bushmaster.

2005-03-09 13:52:31

Gun Industry Watch Launches

The Brady Center launches Gun Industry Watch to systematically expose the movement of guns from dealers into the hands of criminals.

2006-03-30 13:52:31

Campaign Against Illegal Guns launches

On the 25th anniversary of the assassination attempt on President Reagan and the shooting of Presidential Press Secretary Jim Brady, the Brady Campaign launches the Campaign Against Illegal Guns, a landmark multi-year effort to combat the trafficking of guns from licensed gun dealers into the hands of criminals.

2007-04-16 13:52:31

Virginia Tech massacre

32 people are killed and 17 wounded at Virginia Tech in the deadliest school shooting in the history of the United States. The Brady Campaign helped organize remembrance events and rallies in over 100 cities and 50 college campuses to honor the victims of Virginia Tech and all gun tragedies.

2007-06-13 13:52:31

NICS Improvement Amendments Act is passed

The Brady Campaign successfully works to pass the NICS Improvement Amendments Act. States are given incentives to submit records of dangerous people who are prohibited from buying guns to NICS.

2010-05-14 13:52:31

Tenth anniversary of the Million Mom March

Since their creation, members of Million Mom March chapters have distributed more than one million Asking Saves Kids brochures in their communities.

2011-12-08 13:52:31

Faiths United to Prevent Gun Violence

The Brady Campaign helped to establish Faiths United to Prevent Gun Violence to mobilize the faith community to advocate for common sense gun policies.

2012-02-02 14:46:13

Lawyers for a Safer America Established

In 2012, the Brady Center launched Lawyers for a Safer America (LSA), a national alliance of lawyers and law firms dedicated to reducing gun violence through the courts. LSA members work with the Brady Center to defend strong gun laws, challenge dangerous laws that endanger communities, and help victims and survivors of gun violence reform the gun industry. LSA was launched at an event honoring retired U.S. Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens.

2012-07-20 13:52:31

Aurora Theater Shooting

12 people are killed and 70 more are injured in a mass shooting at an Aurora, Colorado movie theater. With families of the victims, the Brady Campaign launches the “We Are Better Than This” campaign. The campaign highlights stories of gun violence victims to demonstrate why lawmakers should put saving lives over protecting their careers.

2012-12-14 14:46:13

Tragedy in Newtown

Following the murder of twenty students and six educators at Sandy Hook Elementary School, the Brady Campaign launches “Voices Against Violence.” This campaign drives 30,000 calls to elected officials on Capitol Hill at the time of the Senate vote to expand background checks to all gun show and online sales.

2013-11-11 13:52:31

The Brady Campaign 2013 National Summit

Hundreds of Brady advocates spend three days in Washington, Hundreds of Brady advocates spend three days in Washington, D.C. hearing from experts and leaders in the gun violence prevention movement, before spending a day lobbying on Capitol Hill.

2013-12-03 14:46:13

6th State Scorecard released

The Brady Campaign and the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence team up to evaluate and compare the gun laws of all fifty states.

2013-12-03 14:46:13

Brady Center Suit Stops Mandatory Gun Ownership Law

The Brady Center successfully challenged a Georgia town’s rule requiring nearly everyone to own a gun. When they settled the suit, the City of Nelson agreed to drop the mandate and recognize a right not to own guns.

2013-12-31 14:46:13


2013 was a record year for the passage of strong state gun laws: 21 states passed gun reform measures, including four states (Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, and New York) that expanded background checks to all gun sales. Our twenty-five Brady chapters in California worked to pass a record sixteen gun reform bills of which nine were signed into law as part of the Life Act.

2013-12-31 14:46:13

Brady Center Wins Victories Against Bad Apple Gun Dealers

The Brady Center’s Legal Action Project wins victories against bad apple gun dealers in appeals courts in Alaska, Kansas, and New York. Each state court set precedent to make it possible to hold gun dealers accountable for recklessly selling guns to dangerous people.

2013-12-31 14:46:13

Supreme Court Upholds Domestic Violence Gun Law

The U.S. Supreme Court issues a critical ruling on domestic violence offenders and guns. The Brady Center argues in an amicus brief, and the Court agrees, that anyone convicted of violence against a family member or domestic partner is barred by federal law from buying or owning guns.

2014-02-28 14:46:13

20 years of background checks

The twentieth anniversary of the Brady Law was celebrated with a press conference and a call to action to tell Congress to “Finish the Job” and expand Brady background checks to all gun sales. The Brady Law has stopped over 2.1 million gun sales to dangerous people. Sign the petition to tell Congress to Finish the Job.

2014-06-21 14:46:13

13th Annual ASK Day

The ASK Campaign has successfully inspired 19 million households to ask if there are guns in homes where their children play.

2014-06-21 14:46:13

Supreme Court Upholds Critical Gun Laws

The U.S. Supreme Court upholds important laws restricting access to guns for domestic abusers and prohibiting straw purchasing of guns. The Brady Center’s Legal Action Project supported the laws in amicus briefs.

2014-08-04 14:46:13

The Brady Campaign mourns the loss of Jim Brady

The Brady Campaign’s namesake and leader passed away on August 4, 2014, at age 73.

2014-09-06 14:46:13

Stop Bad Apple Gun Dealers Campaign Launched

The Brady Campaign launched their Stop Bad Apple Gun Dealers Campaign, which includes filing lawsuits to hold irresponsible gun dealers accountable for their actions. 5% of gun dealers account for 90% of crime guns in the U.S. By targeting that 1%, gun violence in the United States could be greatly reduced.

2014-09-30 14:46:13

Governor Brown Signs AB 1014

California Governor Jerry Brown signed AB 1014, a bill which establishes a process for law enforcement or immediate family members to obtain a Gun Violence Restraining Order from a court in order to temporarily limit an individual’s access to firearms when there are warning signs or indications that the person is at risk for violence. Brady advocated tirelessly for this legislation in the aftermath of the Isla Vista shooting in May 2014.

2014-10-20 14:46:13

Lap Dog Campaign Launched

The Brady campaign launched, a website to expose the toxic relationship between the corporate gun lobby and the “Lap Dog” members of Congress who do their bidding. Each representative is rated based on their support for legislation to expand background check sales and whether they take money and block legislation to expand background checks in 2013, as well as whether they have received significant contributions from the NRA and corporate gun lobby.

2014-11-04 14:46:13

Washington State Votes to Expand Background Checks

Washington voters passed ballot initiative I-594, expanding background checks to cover all gun sales, including online and at gun shows. This made Washington State the seventh state to pass expanded background checks, and paved the way for similar initiatives in other states.

2015-03-12 14:46:13

Launch of

Weak gun laws in states like Arizona, Florida, Texas, and Alaska allow criminals, domestic abusers, felons, and other dangerous people to obtain weapons with relative ease. Check out CrimAdvisor!

2015-04-03 14:46:13

The Brady Campaign mourns the loss of Chairperson Sarah Brady

Brady’s guiding light and Chairperson of the Corporation, aged 73, passed away on April 3, 2015.

2015-05-11 14:46:13

Oregon Governor Kate Brown Signs Bill to Expand Background Checks Across All Gun Sales

n May 2015, Oregon became the eighth state to pass a bill that would expand life-saving Brady background checks to all gun sales. Oregon’s SB 941, a historic piece of legislation which will prevent dangerous individuals from getting their hands on a gun, increases the percentage of the American population that is covered by Brady background checks from 33 to 35 percent. Oregon is sixth state to expand background checks since the Sandy Hook massacre in 2012.

2015-05-15 14:46:13

"We're looking for a few good moms!"

To celebrate the 15th anniversary of the Million Mom March, the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence honored MMM founder Donna Dees-Thomases with the Sarah Brady Visionary Award and premiered a video tribute in honor of Donna and the movement. Donna helped kick off Brady’s “Year of a Million Actions” campaign to run from Mother’s Day 2015 through Mother’s Day 2016, asking everyone to take action to help cut gun deaths in half by 2025.

2015-05-15 14:46:13

15th Anniversary of National ASK Day

The Brady Center to Prevent Gun violence and the American Academy of Pediatrics marked June 21st as the 15th annual Asking Saves Kids Day. The ASK campaign reminds parents and guardians of the importance of asking if there is an unlocked gun in the homes where their children play. ASK Day was celebrated with “America’s Largest Playdate” events in Brooklyn, Washington, DC, Boston, Los Angeles, and Williston, South Carolina. To learn more about the ASK campaign, visit to get started and sign the pledge! 19 million parents have already begun asking this life-saving question!

2015-06-22 14:46:13

Brady Launches Petition to Congress: "#IamCharleston and I Demand a Vote NOW!"

In the wake of the massacre at Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, South Carolina, on June 17, which claimed the lives of nine people, Brady launched a campaign to petition Congress to vote immediately to expand Brady background checks to all gun sales. Brady president Dan Gross hand-delivered thousands of condolence cards to Mother Emanuel, stating “It is finally time for Congress to wake up and do right by the American people they have been elected to represent and put our lives and safety ahead of the interests of the corporate gun lobby. It is time for Congress to expand lifesaving Brady background checks to all gun sales now. Ninety percent of the American people support this measure. It does not impact the right of a law-abiding citizen to buy a gun. It keeps guns out of the hands of the dangerous people that we all agree should not have them.”

Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence

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