Date: October 28, 2011
Location: Netherland Hilton (downtown Cincinnati)
Jacqueline A. Berrien, Chair of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, will present the keynote address at the fall luncheon event for the Center for Race, Gender, and Social Justice. She will discuss “Realizing the Dream of Equal Employment Opportunity in the 21st Century.”
Ms. Berrien was sworn in as Chair of the EEOC on April 7, 2010. President Barack Obama nominated Ms. Berrien on July 16, 2009, to a term ending July 1, 2014. In announcing her nomination, the President said that Berrien “has spent her entire career fighting to give voice to underrepresented communities and protect our most basic rights.” She received a recess appointment to the position on March, 27, 2010, and was confirmed by the Senate for her full term on December 22, 2010.
Chair Berrien came to the EEOC from the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund (LDF), where she served as Associate Director-Counsel for five and a half years. From 2001 to 2004, Berrien was a Program Officer in the Governance and Civil Society Unit of the Ford Foundation’s Peace and Social Justice Program, where she administered more than $13 million in grants to promote greater political participation by underrepresented groups and remove barriers to civic engagement.
Before joining the Ford Foundation, Berrien practiced civil rights law for more than 15 years with such premier organizations as the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights in Washington, D.C., the American Civil Liberties Union in New York, as well as LDF, where she coordinated all of LDF’s work in the area of voting rights and political participation and represented voters in proceedings before the U.S. Supreme Court and federal and state appellate and trial courts. She began her legal career in 1986, working as a law clerk to the Honorable U.W. Clemon, the first African-American U.S. District Court Judge in Birmingham, Alabama.
She has published several articles on race and gender discrimination issues and was appointed to the adjunct faculty of New York Law School in 1995. Berrien also taught trial advocacy at Harvard and Fordham law schools.
Chair Berrien is a graduate of Harvard Law School, where she served as a General Editor of the Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review. She received her B.A. with High Honors in Government and English from Oberlin College where she received the Harry S. Truman Scholarship in recognition of her leadership potential and commitment to a career in public service.