1. Home
  2. Newsroom
  3. President Appoints Charlotte A. Burrows EEOC Chair
Press Release 01-21-2021

President Appoints Charlotte A. Burrows EEOC Chair

Jocelyn Samuels Named Vice Chair

WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) today announced that President Biden has named Commissioner Charlotte A. Burrows Chair of the EEOC and Commissioner Jocelyn Samuels Vice Chair of the EEOC.  

Burrows has served as an EEOC Commissioner since 2015, having been initially nominated by President Barack Obama. In 2019 she was re-nominated and unanimously confirmed for a second term ending in 2023.

“I am deeply honored to be chosen by President Biden to lead the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission," Chair Burrows said. “The EEOC’s mission to advance equal opportunity for all in the workplace is particularly critical as we work to rebuild the American economy and address the challenges of systemic discrimination. I look forward to working with the President, my colleagues at the Commission, Congress, and the American people to ensure that everyone has a fair chance at success.”

Chair Burrows' government experience includes service as Associate Deputy Attorney General at the U.S. Department of Justice, where she worked on a broad range of civil and criminal matters, including employment litigation, voting rights, combating racial profiling, and imple­menting the Violence Against Women Act, which was first co-sponsored in Congress in 1994 by then-Senator Biden, and reauthorized several times since. Before joining the Department of Justice, she served as General Counsel for Civil and Constitutional Rights to former Senator Edward M. Kennedy on the Senate Judiciary Committee and later on the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions. 

Vice Chair Jocelyn Samuels joined the EEOC as a Commissioner on Oct. 14, 2020.

“It is a privilege to be able to serve the EEOC and the American people in this capacity,” said Vice Chair Samuels. “The EEOC’s mission to eradicate workplace discrimination could not be more critical than at this moment, and I look forward to our work to fully and truly realize the promise of our nation’s civil rights laws.”

Immediately prior to joining the Commission, Vice Chair Samuels served as the Executive Director and Roberta A. Conroy Scholar of Law at the Williams Institute of the UCLA School of Law, focusing on legal strategies to attain equality for sexual and gender minorities.  During the Obama Administration, she was the Director of the Office for Civil Rights at the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, where she oversaw civil rights enforcement with respect to hospitals, health care providers, insurers, and human services agencies, and served as a political appointee at the Department of Justice, including as the Acting Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights.

The EEOC advances equal opportunity in the workplace by enforcing federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. More information about Chair Burrows and Vice Chair Samuels is available on EEOC’s website at Stay connected with the latest EEOC news by subscribing to our email updates.