Mission Statement

On September 5, 1980, Mothers Against Drunk Drivers (MADD) was incorporated and the mission as stated in its Articles of Incorporation were “To aid the victims of crimes performed by individuals driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, to aid the families of such victims and to increase public awareness of the problem of drinking and drugged driving."

In 1984, MADD changed its name from Mothers Against Drunk Drivers to Mothers Against Drunk Driving. This carefully considered change was made because MADD is opposed to the criminal act of drunk driving, not against individuals. MADD also updated its mission statement to “Mothers Against Drunk Driving provides grassroots leadership to create major social change in the attitude and behavior of Americans toward drunk driving."

In 1985, MADD’s mission statement changed to: “To mobilize victims and their allies to establish the public conviction that impaired driving is unacceptable and criminal, in order to promote corresponding public policies, programs and personal responsibility."

In 1992, MADD adopted a more simplified mission statement, “To stop drunk driving and support the victims of this violent crime."

By 1999, MADD had greatly expanded its work on preventing underage drinking based on emerging research. As a result, preventing underage drinking became a free-standing prong of the mission: “To stop drunk driving, support the victims of this violent crime and prevent underage drinking."

As of January 1, 2015, MADD strengthend its mission statement, changing "stop" to "end" drunk driving, plus adding a fourth focus on drugged driving, due to long serving drugged driving victims and supporting law enforcement efforts to rid the roadways of all substance-impaired driving. MADD's mission now reads: “To end drunk driving, help fight drugged driving, support the victims of these violent crimes and prevent underage drinking.”  

History of MADD

From its humble beginnings 35 years ago, MADD has evolved into one of the most influential and widely supported non-profit organizations in America. Learn about how MADD first started, the history of our fight against drunk driving and some of our victories along the way.

Beckie Brown was a tireless advocate for MADD. She became involved after her son, Marcus Daniel Brown, died at age 18 on December 9, 1979, from injuries suffered in an underage drunk driving crash. Beckie passed away in 2002. We'll forever remember her lasting legacy as we look back at her impact on MADD.

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When MADD celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2005, the organization looked back at how it all began. Read the story of how an organization went from a handful of mothers to one of history’s greatest grassroots success stories—and helped save thousands of lives along the way.

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Candy Lightner founded MADD in 1980 after her daughter, Cari, was killed by a repeat drunk driving offender. Cindy Lamb—whose daughter, Laura, became the nation’s youngest quadriplegic at the hands of a drunk driver—soon joined Candy in her crusade to save lives. Read how the stories of two little girls launched a lifesaving cause. Read more...(PDF)