EEOC Commissioner Chai Feldblum gave the keynote address March 6 for the Center on Applied Feminism’s Eighth Annual Feminist Legal Theory Conference, “Applied Feminism and Work.” Feldblum’s talk was titled “Gender Equity and Employment.”
After asking rhetorically if gender discrimination in the workplace was a thing of the past, Feldblum replied: “News flash: No! In fact it’s sort of mind-blowing how much it’s not over.”
Today’s symposium is broken into three panels, featuring scholars from the University of Baltimore School of Law and law schools around the nation:
I. Reducing Harassment, Violence and Retaliation in the Workplace
II. Enhancing Economic Security for Women Workers
III. Reimagining Work and Understanding Gender Equity Within Work’s Future Frontiers.
Feldblum has served as a commissioner of the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission since 2010 after being nominated by President Barack Obama and confirmed by the Senate. In 2013, Obama nominated her to a second term, which ends in July 2018; she was confirmed by the Senate in late 2013.
Feldblum also has taught since 1991 at the Georgetown University Law Center, where she founded the Federal Legislation and Administrative Clinic, which has represented clients including Catholic Charities USA, the National Disability Rights Network and the Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law. She also founded and co-directed Workplace Flexibility 2010, a project focused on finding common ground between employers and employees on workplace flexibility matters.
From 1988 to 1991, Feldblum served as legislative counsel at the ACLU, where she helped draft and negotiate the Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990. She also has worked to advance lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender rights and is the first openly lesbian commissioner of the EEOC.
After receiving her J.D. from Harvard Law School, Feldblum clerked for Judge Frank Coffin of the First Circuit Court of Appeals and for Supreme Court Justice Harry Blackmun.
(Biographical material courtesy of Feldblum’s page on the EEOC website.)