Civil Rights Leader Rev. Dr. CT Vivian and Equal Opportunity Officials…

“We are delighted to honor the Reverend Dr. C.T. Vivian, a civil rights icon whose lifetime of service embodies the principles we at AAAED hold dear,” said Dr. Danielle L. Williams, Awards Chair.

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The American Association for Access, Equity and Diversity (AAAED), an organization of equal opportunity, diversity and affirmative action professionals, announced its “Drum Major for Justice Award" honoree and two of its keynote speakers at the Association’s 44th National Conference and Annual Meeting in Atlanta, GA. Themed "Bridging Opportunities: Keeping the Dream Alive,” the meeting will be held at the Sheraton Atlanta Hotel, 165 Courtland Street NE, Atlanta, GA 30303, on June 6 – 8, 2018.

AAAED will honor civil rights icon the Rev. Dr. C.T. Vivian, with the Drum Major for Justice Award. Dr. Vivian, once known as a Christian journalist, is best known for his work with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. In November 2013, Dr. Vivian was honored for his vision and leadership in the fight for justice when he was awarded this Nation’s highest civilian honor—The Presidential Medal of Freedom.

The Drum Major for Justice is the highest award the association confers. The award is a special acknowledgement of the extraordinary contributions that an organization or individual, including a public servant or one who has held an elective office or appointment to public service, has made to the cause of equity, access and diversity. Previous awardees include Representatives August F. Hawkins and Parren Mitchell (deceased), Dr. Shirley A Jackson, Rep. G. K. Butterfield, Dr. Norman C. Francis and Rev. James Morris Lawson. The AAAED awards program will take place on Thursday, June 7th at noon.

Among the keynote speakers are Victoria A. Lipnic and Craig Leen, two individuals who represent the leading equal employment opportunity agencies in the federal government: The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP), U.S. Department of Labor.

Victoria A. Lipnic was named Acting Chair of the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission by President Donald J. Trump on January 25, 2017. She began her service as a Commissioner of the EEOC in April 2010, having been confirmed by the Senate for an initial term ending on July 1, 2015. In November 2015, she was confirmed by the Senate for a second term ending on July 1, 2020. From 2015 to 2016, she co-chaired the EEOC's Select Task Force on the Study of Harassment in the Workplace, culminating in the co-chairs issuing their final report at a Commission meeting in June 2016. She has also taken great interest in issues relating to equal pay, the good governance of the Commission, increased transparency and public participation in policymaking, and the proper role of the EEOC as a regulatory enforcement agency. She received her B.A. in Political Science and History from Allegheny College and her J.D. from George Mason University School of Law.

Craig Leen, Special Advisor to OFCCP Director Ondray T. Harris, was formerly the City Attorney for the City of Coral Gables, an Adjunct Professor at Florida International University-College of Law, and a Volunteer Adjunct Professor at the University of Miami School of Law. Leen received his Bachelors of Arts degree from Georgetown University in 1997 and his Doctor of Law (JD) degree from Columbia University in 2000. From 2000-2005, he practiced law for various law firms in New York, Boston, and Miami. He also clerked for the Honorable Robert E. Keeton, United States District Judge, District of Massachusetts. From 2005-2011, Leen held various positions in Miami-Dade County, including Chief, Federal Section; Chief, Appeals Section, and Assistant County Attorney. Leen’s wife Ana is a child psychiatrist, and he has two school-age children. The Leens are very involved in autism awareness.

“We are delighted to honor the Reverend Dr. C.T. Vivian, a civil rights icon whose lifetime of service embodies the principles we at AAAED hold dear,” said Dr. Danielle L. Williams, Awards Chair. "We are also pleased to welcome Acting EEOC Chair Lipnic and Senior Advisor Leen. We look forward to hearing their views about EEO enforcement and regulatory initiatives in 2018,” added Dr. Myron A. Anderson, AAAED President.

The AAAED 44th National Conference and Annual Meeting is open to the press. For more information or to register for the Conference, go to:

Founded in 1974 as the American Association for Affirmative Action (AAAA), AAAED is a national not-for-profit association of professionals working in the areas of equal opportunity, compliance and diversity. AAAED has 44 years of leadership in providing professional training to members, enabling them to be more successful and productive in their careers. It also promotes understanding and advocacy of affirmative action and other equal opportunity laws to enhance the tenets of access, inclusion and equality in employment, economic and educational opportunities.

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