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Jon M. Greenbaum*

Chief Counsel

Jon Greenbaum is the chief counsel for the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights under Law where he is responsible for managing the Committee’s efforts to seek racial justice. Greenbaum oversees the Committee’s Legal Projects and Initiatives including Criminal Justice; Digital Justice; Educational Opportunities; Economic Justice; Fair Housing & Community Development; Voting Rights; and Pro Bono. Greenbaum also serves on the Executive Management Team of the Committee.

Greenbaum was promoted to chief counsel in November 2010 after being promoted to legal director in March 2009. Greenbaum served as the director of the Committee’s Voting Rights Project, where he led its program to achieve equality and protect advances in voting rights for racial and ethnic minorities and other traditionally disfranchised groups.

Greenbaum has successfully litigated numerous cases in the federal courts and has argued before the United States Circuit Court of Appeals. Notable cases in which he has played a significant role include Shelby County v. Holder (defense of the constitutionality of the Voting Rights Act), SFFA v. President and Fellows of Harvard College (defense of affirmative action admissions plan); the Coalition for Equity and Excellence in Maryland Higher Education, Inc., et al v. Maryland Higher Education Commission et al (desegregation challenge to Maryland’s higher education system; Arizona v. ITCA (challenge to Arizona’s documentation of citizenship requirement for voter registration applicants); League of Women Voters v. Brunner (constitutional challenge to Ohio’s administration of elections); and United States v. Charleston County (vote dilution challenge to at-large method of elections). In addition, he has testified before Congress, state legislatures; and the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights. He has also presented to numerous law schools and governmental, civic and bar associations. In addition, he has regularly appeared on television and radio interviews and in print media.

Greenbaum is co-chair of the Voting Rights Task Force of the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights, the national umbrella organization of American civil rights groups. He served as an adjunct professor at the Georgetown University Law Center and has authored or co-authored several major publications including Toward a More Just Justice System: How Open are the Courts to Social Justice Litigation (2016); “Shelby County v. Holder: When the Rational Becomes Irrational,” 57 Howard L.J. 811 (Spring 2014); “Government-Issued Photo Identification and Proof of Citizenship Requirements for Voters,” in America Votes! A Guide to Modern Election Law and Voting Rights, American Bar Association (March 2008); and Report: Voting Rights in Alabama: 1982-2006,” 17 S. Cal. Rev. L. & Social Justice 249 (Spring 2008).

Prior to joining the Lawyers’ Committee in 2003, he served as senior trial attorney in the Voting Section of the Civil Rights Division at the U.S. Department of Justice from 1997-2003. While at the Department of Justice, he instituted Voting Rights Act lawsuits on behalf of minority voters nationwide and educated government officials and community members on federal voting protections. From 1993-1996, he was a litigation associate in the Los Angeles office of Dewey Ballantine LLP.

Greenbaum received his law degree from the University of California at Los Angeles in 1993 and his undergraduate degree from the University of California at Berkeley in 1989.

In 2023, Greenbaum celebrated his 20th year at the Lawyers’ Committee. He received the EDWIN D. WOLF AWARD for his outstanding service and commitment to civil rights. The award was presented by Lawyers’ Committee Board Executive Committee Member Michale Jones of Kirkland & Ellis.You can read Jones’ remarks here.

Bar Admissions: Admitted in California and the District of Columbia; admitted to the Supreme Court of the United States, US Courts of Appeals for the First, Second, Third, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth, Ninth, Tenth, Eleventh, and DC Circuits; US District Courts for the Central, Eastern, Northern and Southern Districts of California, Northern District of Ohio, District of Columbia, Eastern and Western Districts of Arkansas, Eastern District of Wisconsin, Eastern and Western Districts of Michigan, and Northern District of Illinois.