For Immediate Release
Alexis Squire, Equal Rights Center, 202-370-3209


WASHINGTON, April 1, 2014—Today the Equal Rights Center (ERC)—a national non-profit civil rights organization — announces that Melvina C. Ford, a former Presidential Political Appointee for the U.S. Department of Labor and long-time civil rights advocate and attorney, will become the new Executive Director of the ERC, following the retirement of current Executive Director Don Kahl at the end of March 2014.

“On the eve of the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act, I welcome the opportunity to lead the nation’s premier civil rights testing, training and enforcement organization, and I look forward to continuing to work with our corporate and community partners, our 7,000+ members around the country, and our dynamic board and staff in the mission of ensuring equality for ALL,” said Melvina Ford, Executive Director of the ERC.

At the Department of Labor, Ford served as the Senior Policy Advisor for the Wage and Hour Division and Acted for the Deputy Assistant Secretary in the Office of Policy, where she managed the Department’s regulatory agenda, advised the Acting Secretary on policy issues, and coordinated with the Executive Office of the President and other federal agencies.

Ford has a long history of both civil rights work and non-profit management, having previously served as the Executive Director of the Employment Justice Center a D.C. based nonprofit dedicated to securing, protecting and promoting workplace justice in the D.C. metropolitan area. She also brings a wealth of litigation experience to the ERC, both as an attorney in private practice with a focus on Title VII employment discrimination cases and as the Legal Projects Manager for the Women’s Law Center of Maryland.

Ford currently serves on the United States Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit’s Standing Committee on Pro Bono Legal Services and is a graduate of the Georgetown University Law Center and the University of California, Berkeley.

“The Equal Rights Center is extremely happy to welcome Melvina Ford as the new Executive Director,” said American University Law Professor Robert Dinerstein, ERC Board President. “Through her exemplary work with the civil rights community and the federal government, as well as her experience as a civil rights litigator, Melvina has proven that she possesses the knowledge, skills, and passion to lead the Equal Rights Center as it moves forward.”


About the Equal Rights Center (
Originally formed in 1983, the Equal Rights Center (ERC) is a national non-profit civil rights organization based in Washington, D.C. With members located in every state and the District of Columbia, the ERC works nationally to promote equal opportunity in housing, employment, disability rights, immigrant rights, and access to public accommodations and government services for all protected classes under federal, state, and local laws.

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