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(Washington, D.C.) —The U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions will hold a hearing on Tuesday on the nomination of Catherine Lhamon to serve as the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights at the U.S. Department of Education. If confirmed, Lhamon would lead the enforcement of civil rights in our nation’s schools at the department, as well as making certain that all students, no matter their race, ethnicity, sex, gender or ZIP code, have equal access to educational opportunity. 

The following is a statement from David Hinojosa, director of the Educational Opportunities Project at the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law:  

“Catherine Lhamon is impeccably qualified, has strong civil rights experience, and is exactly the person we need to lead the Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights at this moment. After four years of neglect for civil rights in our nation’s schools under the Trump administration, we need a leader who will unequivocally enforce these statutes and improve the education of every student along the way. Catherine Lhamon is that leader.   

“When Lhamon previously held this position, she demonstrated a strong commitment to enforcing the full protections of Title VI, Title IX and other laws, ensuring schools could better address disproportionate discipline of Black boys and girls, protecting survivors of sexual violence and harassment, engendering English learners’ equal access to education, preventing the bullying of students with disabilities, and securing the fair treatment of transgender students. Her critical work also extended well beyond these aspects of education.  

“Our nation’s students must know that their government is looking to uplift them up, not divide and suppress. Catherine Lhamon’s confirmation would be a big step forward in achieving this ideal.” 


In 2013, under the Obama administration, the U.S. Senate unanimously confirmed Lhamon for this position. In 2016, she was appointed Chairperson of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights. She is currently deputy chair of the United States Domestic Policy Council for Racial Justice and Equality.  

Read our letter in support of the nomination here. 



About the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law – The Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law (Lawyers’ Committee), a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization, was formed in 1963 at the request of President John F. Kennedy to involve the private bar in providing legal services to address racial discrimination. The principal mission of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law is to secure, through the rule of law, equal justice for all, particularly in the areas of voting rights, criminal justice, fair housing and community development, economic justice, educational opportunities, and hate crimes.  For more information, please visit