Institute for Human Advancement
Although its name makes it sound like a benevolent scientific group or think thank, the Institute for Human Advancement is a political organization. Its goal is the advancement of “true humans,” as opposed to mutants or other superhumans. Founded in 1982 by Anette Berkelheimer, the Institute is a lobbying group focusing on the Superhuman World.
While the IHA often objects to superhumans in general, it mainly focuses on mutant superheroes. They regard mutants as “the single most dangerous threat to true humans on the planet today.” IHA reports discuss in detail the possibilities of mutants killing all true humans or herding them into force labor camps to serve their mutant masters. Every superhuman battle that results in significant damage or loss of human life, the Institute is there railing against the “abomination” of mutantkind and the “severe hazard mutant superhumans post to all humans.”
The Institute’s founder died in 1994 and was replaced by a man named Archer Samuels. If anything, he is even more rabidly anti-mutant than Berkelheimer. Under Samuels, the IHA has obtained a higher, better profile in society, and significantly increased its fundraising revenue. The vocal support of Senator Phillip Glassman of Wyoming has given the Institute and its message a new legitimacy.
The IHA has had a strong presence in Millennium City since 1996, when it established a branch office there. They have been a thorn in the side of the City Council ever since the Council established an official working relationship with the Champions. The Institute seems to focus particular attention on Sapphire, the Champions’ resident mutant, and Teknique, a mutant working for the FBI. IHA members frequently picket outside the local FBI headquarters and Homestead, the Champions headquarters.