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Press Release 04-20-2010

Victoria A. Lipnic Becomes EEOC Commissioner

WASHINGTON—Victoria A. Lipnic, a former U.S. Assistant Secretary of Labor, was sworn in today as a Commissioner of the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).  She was nominated on Nov. 3, 2009, and received a recess appointment to the position by President Barack Obama on March 27, 2010.

With her arrival, the EEOC returns to its full complement of five commissioners.  Lipnic joins Chair Jacqueline A. Berrien and Commissioner Chai Feldblum, who also received recess appointments on March 27, and were sworn in on April 7, and Commissioners Stuart J. Ishimaru and Constance S. Barker, who were already serving on the Commission.

Lipnic's government experience includes service as Assistant Secretary of Labor for Employment Standards from 2002 to 2009.  The Employment Standards Administration oversaw the Wage and Hour Division, the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP), the Office of Labor Management Standards and the Office of Workers Compensation Programs.  During her tenure as Assistant Secretary, these divisions revised regulations on overtime, the Family and Medical Leave Act, and issued the first-ever regulations for OFCCP to evaluate compensation discrimination.

"Victoria Lipnic's breadth of experience with labor laws gives her unique insights into our work," said EEOC Chair Jacqueline A. Berrien.  "She will be a valued partner as we move forward to eradicate employment discrimination from the nation's workplaces."

"I believe equal opportunity in work is critical to all Americans and to how we define ourselves as a nation," Lipnic said.  "I look forward to working with Chair Berrien and my fellow commissioners in this critical task. I hope that I will carry out my responsibilities in a manner that will do honor to all who have advanced the cause of civil rights in our country – with understanding and respect toward all."

Immediately prior to joining the EEOC, Lipnic was of counsel to the law firm of Seyfarth Shaw LLP in its Washington, DC office. As part of her work for the firm, she counseled clients on compliance with numerous labor and employment laws.  She has testified before Congress many times and did so before the U.S. House of Representatives on the subject of paid sick leave on behalf of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce last June.  

Before joining the Department of Labor, she was the Workforce Policy Counsel to the then-Majority (Republican) members of the Committee on Education and the Workforce in the U.S. House of Representatives and was an attorney for labor and employment matters for the U.S. Postal Service.  Lipnic also worked as special assistant for business liaison to then-Secretary of Commerce, Malcolm Baldrige.

Lipnic received her B.A. degree in Political Science and History from Allegheny College and her J.D. from George Mason University School of Law.

The EEOC enforces federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination.  Further information about the EEOC is available on its web site at