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Eric Dreiband Selected to Lead the Department of Justice Office of Civil Rights


Civil rights organizations not happy that Dreiband defended companies against discrimination cases

Eric Dreiband is the Administration’s pick to run the USDOJ Office of Civil Rights. He currently works for the law firm of Jones Day where he has defended companies, e.g. Abercrombie & Fitch, R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., Bloomberg and CVS, in employment discrimination cases. He also represents companies on other civil rights issues, including whistleblowing, wage and hour, litigation, and counseling.

His impressive education consists of an undergraduate degree from Princeton University, graduate degree from Harvard and a law degree from Northwestern University. He graduated with honors at Northwestern and was the Articles Editor of the Law Review.

From 2003 through 2005 Drieband served as the general counsel of the EEOC and issued the Regional Attorneys’ Manual, which established the policies of EEOC’s litigation program. Prior to EEOC, he served as deputy administrator of DOL’s Wage and Hour Division where he received the Secretary of Labor’s Exceptional Achievement Award for his work on updating the overtime regulations and the Compliance Assistance Award for his work with federal child labor laws.

From 1997 to 2000, Dreiband served in the Office of Independent Counsel Kenneth Starr where he was awarded a special commendation by the FDIC for his investigation and prosecution of a former associate attorney general of the United States.

The ACLU, NAACP and the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights questioned his experience since most of his career has been helping companies accused of discrimination instead of those discriminated against. According to White House spokeswoman Kelly Love “The White House judges nominees on the merits of their character and not on the clients they once represented as counsel.” Dreiband is also being criticized by LGBT groups for his representation of the University of North Carolina in defense of its decision to honor the provisions of the state’s controversial “bathroom bill.”

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