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LGBT, Disability Rights Scholar Nominated to EEOC

The White House announced Monday that President Obama intends to nominate Chai Feldblum, law professor at Georgetown University Law Center, for Commissioner of the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). Feldblum is a distinguished scholar and activist for workplace issues and LGBT, welfare, and disability rights, according to her Georgetown Law biography. She is also the first openly gay person to be nominated to the EEOC.

Feldblum currently acts as the founder and director of the Law Center’s Federal Legislation and Administrative Clinic, a program that trains students to become legislative lawyers. According to a White House press release, she is also co-director of the Workplace Flexibility 2010 initiative to develop national policy improving work conditions.

In the 1980s, Feldblum served as Legislative Counsel to the AIDS Project of the American Civil Liberties Union. She played an instrumental role in the drafting of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 as well as the passage of the ADA Amendments Act of 2008. According to the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), Feldblum is a leading advocate for the Employment Nondiscrimination Act, which would introduce employment protections for the LGBT community.

If Feldblum is confirmed by the Senate, she will fill one of five seats on the commission, according to the Legal Times. President Obama nominated Jacqueline Berrien, Associate Director-Counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, as chair of the EEOC in May.

Sources:

Georgetown Law; White House 9/14/09; Human Rights Campaign 9/15/09; Legal Times 9/15/09