Celebrate HSLDA’s Birthday with Giveaways!

Celebrate HSLDA's Birthday with Giveaways! | HSLDA Blog

Celebrate HSLDA's Birthday with Giveaways! | HSLDA Blog

It’s our 33rd birthday, and we’re throwing a party! To celebrate, we’re reaching back through our archives to share some of our favorite moments, we’re giving YOU gifts, and we’re inviting you to join HSLDA Chairman Mike Farris and President Mike Smith, today, March 23 for a livestream update on homeschooling. Click here to start streaming.

***** UPDATE on “The State of Homeschooling” Livestream: This free event for all of our members and friends takes place at 8:00–8:30 ET tonight! Mike and Mike will give an update on where homeschooling is in 2016, report the latest legal and legislative developments and trends, and discuss how this year’s presidential election could impact homeschooling. They’ll answer your questions in a Q&A session at the end. Click here to watch the livestream and submit your questions during the event. See you tonight! *****

In appreciation for our members and your support through the years, we’re holding a special drawing for members with 5 chances to win. Enter by using the form at the bottom of this post (not a member? Join now!).


The First Prize Winner will receive:

  • One free year of HSLDA membership!

The Second Prize Winner will choose one of these two prizes:

The 3rd – 5th Prize Winners will choose one of these five prizes:

Be sure to sign up below for your chance to win! The birthday giveaway is for HSLDA members only and closes at 11:59 p.m. on March 23. Winners will be selected in random drawing on March 24.* 


HSLDA was founded on March 23, 1983 – and in honor of that, we asked Mike Farris (Chairman of the Board), Mike Smith (President of HSLDA), and Chuck Hurst (Vice President of Administration) for three little-known facts about HSLDA, and we collected some of our favorite memories over the years.

Mike Farris:

HSLDA has shared office space over the years with the Moral Majority of Washington, Hall Bearing Company, Fort Worth Texas (though not very long), Concerned Women for America, Free Congress Foundation, and Patrick Henry College.  And we were once located above a saddle shop.

Mike Smith:

Back in 2001, HSLDA almost moved to Colorado Springs, but ultimately decided to stay in Northern Virginia due to our proximity to Washington, D.C., where we continue to lobby for homeschool freedom on Capitol Hill.

Chuck Hurst:

When I first came to HSLDA, all 12,000 member families had a physical manila folder that contained their original application, their renewal forms, and any correspondence. We had them sorted by state, then alphabetically. The learning experience for us was this: we discovered that around 10% of our members moved to another state annually—which kept someone moving files around almost continually, even when we didn’t have anything new to put in their file. So glad when we were able finally able to scan documents and stop moving those files around!


We love celebrating—so hold on to your hat and watch out for those balloons as we take a quick trip through some fun memories. Hope you enjoy the ride with us!


Mike and Mike celebrating Mike Smith’s 50th birthday in December 1993 at our old Kingsbridge Purcellville office.



A highlight of our summer is the annual HSLDA picnic, where we spend the day enjoying games, fellowship, and really good food. The first HSLDA picnic was at Lowes Island, Virginia, in 1994, and was organized by Elizabeth Smith, wife of the then-Vice President, Mike Smith. We’re throwing it back to the 90’s with this picture of some kids of HSLDA employees. Fun fact: Some of these kids grew up to work for HSLDA, too.



The first time we honored an Employee of the Year, we couldn’t pick just one – so we chose three! Here’s a picture of first Employees of the Year (L-R): Sally (Cowan) Berwick, David Gilstrap, and Pat Ramirez. Fun fact: The guy in the middle, David Gilstrap, is still the Director of our Mailroom.



When we celebrated Mike Smith’s 25th anniversary at HSLDA, our former HR Administrator Stephanie Campbell made her legendary cake pops, and we couldn’t get enough of them. Apparently Mike and Mike couldn’t either!


Thanks for your support through the years. We do this because of you, and couldn’t be prouder of the people we serve.

*HSLDA employees and their immediate family members are not eligible to participate in the giveaway. A random drawing will be conducted on March 24, 2016, and the winners will be contacted by email. If a winner does not respond to HSLDA’s prize notification within 24 hours, that entry will be discarded and a new winner will be drawn, with the same response rules applying.

491 thoughts on “Celebrate HSLDA’s Birthday with Giveaways!

  1. I’m looking forward to joining HSLDA as I begin my homeschool journey. Whenever I’ve brought up the possibility of homeschooling, the first thing every one of my already HS friends tells me is “check out HSLDA”. It’s like a security blanket that gives me peace of mind so I know all my t’s are crossed and my i’s dotted.


  2. I appreciate getting the updates about homeschoolers across the country and around the world. I don’t feel isolated as a homeschooler when I know HSLDA is there protecting our family and other homeschooling families.


  3. We appreciate knowing that HSLDA is working so hard to defend our freedoms to homeschool and preserve those for the next generation!


  4. Very grateful for HSLDA helping those of us who have questions about how to understand the state laws regarding homeschooling in our own state.


  5. Thank you, HSLDA, for your constant vigilance to help us have the freedom to homeschool. Your magazine is informative, and I really appreciate the email updates.


  6. HSLDA is a great resource for the home educating community. I love that I can point families that are new to the community who have questions to the HSLDA website. Keep up the good work, HSLDA!


  7. Well done presentation. We are long-time members who have never needed HSLDA involvement in our home schooling, in large measure because HSLDA worked tirelessly to make home schooling better in Tennessee. (My wife will be 62 also when our last child is finished! Big celebration planned for that!)


  8. Happy Birthday, HSLDA! We share the same birthday celebration month! Thank you for all the services you provide at such a reasonable rate.


  9. I’m so thankful for the high school consultants and all the information and support materials available for homeschooling through high school.


  10. Thank you for protecting a widowed Mom and daughter. We appreciate your sound advice on navigating high school curriculum. Without HSLDA, we never would have had the courage or knowledge to homeschool. Thank you for allowing my daughter to spend so much time with the Lord, and reading the Bible.


  11. I’m new to homeschool and HSLDA makes me feel that I’m on the right track. Happy Birthday from my son Diego (9y/o) and mom and dad from Puerto Rico, USA.


  12. Happy Birthday HSLDA! I love that HSLDA is constantly working for homeschooling families, working to protect them and work towards a better life for them. I love how they keep us informed on all the important things.


  13. I’m grateful for the advice last summer when our school district sent us a letter requesting action to let them know if we were continuing homeschooling or not. it sin’t something we have to declare in our state once we remove children from the school district and I’m grateful for the calm hand the HSLDA lawyers had because I was very upset.


  14. I have been very thankful to be able to use the all of the info and forms that HSLDA has available; I used lots of forms in preparing my request for religious exemption and preparing for high school


  15. Happy Birthday HSLDA! We have been members now for 23 years…and still going! We were appreciative of the help we were given with our school district way back then, and are thankful today for the peace of mind in knowing you are just a phone call away!


  16. Thanks for all you do for us homeschoolers! I’m thankful for the easy access to information on your website and knowing your support is only a phone call away!


  17. HSLDA is such a blessing. I had no idea they existed. We had been harassed by school districts and family members for years. Then, we were given a membership!


  18. I love HSLDA! I enjoy getting the magazines and reading what is going on around the US. It is a blessing to know if I ever need help, they are just a phone call away! Thanks for all you do!!


  19. Im a brand new homeschooler as of last week. Im also a new HSLDA member. I have found so many helpful answers already. Thank You for all you do for us.


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