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Fatima Goss Graves, Vice President for Education and Employment

Fatima Goss Graves is Vice President for Education and Employment at the National Women's Law Center, where she works to promote the rights of women and girls at school and in the workplace. Ms. Goss Graves advocates and litigates core legal and policy issues relating to at-risk girls in school, including those that impact pregnant and parenting students, students in a hostile school climate and students participating in athletics. She further works to advance equal pay for equal work, expand opportunities for women in nontraditional fields, and ensure the development of fundamental legal principles of equal opportunity. She uses a number of advocacy strategies in her work on these issues ranging from public education and legislative advocacy to litigation, including briefs in the Supreme Court and federal courts of appeals. Prior to joining the Center, she worked as an appellate and trial litigator at Mayer Brown LLP. She began her career as a law clerk for the Honorable Diane P. Wood of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit. Ms. Goss Graves is a graduate of the University of California at Los Angeles and Yale Law School.

My Take

Connerly's Not-So-Super Tuesday

Posted by Fatima Goss Graves, Vice President for Education and Employment | Posted on: May 20, 2008 at 04:57 pm

by Fatima Goss Graves, Senior Counsel
National Women’s Law Center

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Two Down, Three to Go.

Posted by Fatima Goss Graves, Vice President for Education and Employment | Posted on: May 13, 2008 at 02:46 pm

by Fatima Goss Graves, Senior Counsel
National Women’s Law Center

Ward Connerly. In some ways, Connerly introduced me to activism. In 1995 I was a student at UCLA (Go Bruins!) when he announced his campaign to eliminate affirmative action in the University of California system. At the young age of 19, I attended my first protest and learned to articulate the many reasons that Connerly’s initiative would be bad for California and bad for UC students. Unfortunately, despite the strong efforts of students and activists throughout California (and indeed the nation) Connerly succeeded first in implementing anti-affirmative action measures in the UC System and then, through the passage of Prop 209, throughout the state of California. 

Connerly followed up his “success” in California with statewide initiatives in the state of Washington (Prop. 200) and most recently in Michigan (Prop. 2). The California and Washington initiatives have been in place long enough that we can measure their detrimental effects. And our fears about these initiatives have come true – we now know that the passage of these initiatives resulted in a decrease in the percentage of women working in the skilled trades, fewer valuable science and math programs that target women and minorities, and fewer government contracts for women and minority small businesses.   

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Update on the Fair Pay Act

Posted by Fatima Goss Graves, Vice President for Education and Employment | Posted on: April 18, 2008 at 12:41 pm

by Fatima Goss Graves, Senior Counsel
National Women's Law Center

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SBA Erects Another Roadblock For Women-Owned Businesses

Posted by Fatima Goss Graves, Vice President for Education and Employment | Posted on: March 06, 2008 at 03:22 pm

by Fatima Goss Graves, Senior Counsel
National Women’s Law Center

This week the Center joined together with a diverse group of organizations to file comments protesting the Small Business Administration’s proposed rule to implement the Women’s Procurement Program. Women-owned businesses contracting with the federal government have been waiting for years for the SBA to finally implement the Women’s Procurement Program, which increases the ability for women-owned businesses to gain contracts with the federal government.

There is no doubt that women-owned small businesses have been largely shut out of federal contracting. Indeed, the federal government has been unable to implement even a limited goal of awarding five percent of federal contracts to women-owned small businesses. And Congress continually receives evidence of discrimination against women-owned small businesses. But after dragging its feet for years (you may recall that the SBA was ordered by a federal court to develop a plan for implementation way back in 2005), the proposed rule would do nothing to implement the program and instead would undermine Congress’ attempts to provide women-owned small businesses with a fair chance to participate in the federal procurement process.

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