Fireside Chat with Deborah N. Archer, President, American Civil Liberties Union

Dean Dayna Bowen Matthew Interviews First Black ACLU President
Wed, 24 February, 2021 6:30pm


Join GW Law in celebrating Black History Month with a fireside chat featuring Deborah N. Archer, the first Black president in the 101-year history of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). She will discuss her vision for the ACLU and for the nation, as well as her journey in becoming the ACLU's first Black leader. Professor Roger A. Fairfax, Jr. will provide introductory remarks and Dean Dayna Bowen Matthew will moderate the discussion. 


About Professor Archer

Deborah Archer


Deborah N. Archer is the Jacob K. Javits Professor at New York University, and Professor of Clinical Law and Co-Faculty Director of the Center on Race, Inequality at NYU School of Law. Professor Archer is also the President of the American Civil Liberties Union and a nationally recognized expert in civil rights, civil liberties, and racial justice.  As the ACLU's eighth president since 1920, she will act as chair of its board of directors, overseeing organizational matters and the setting of civil liberties policies. The fight against racial injustice is expected to be a top priority. Other ACLU priorities include voting rights, a rollback of the Trump administration's get-tough immigration policies, and joining in efforts to thwart anti-abortion legislation surfacing in many Republican-governed states.

Early in Professor Archer's career, after graduating from Yale Law School, Professor Archer was a legal fellow at the ACLU in 1997-98. She has been a member of the ACLU's board since 2009, and a general counsel and member of the board's executive committee since 2017. At NYU Law School, Professor Archer is a professor of clinical law and director of its Civil Rights Clinic. She has served as chair of the New York City Civilian Complaint Review Board, which investigates alleged police misconduct, and also was assistant counsel at the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund.

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