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About the Speaker

Linda Chavez writes a weekly syndicated column that appears in newspapers across the country. She is the author of Out of the Barrio: Toward a New Politics of Hispanic Assimilation (Basic Books 1991), which the Denver Post described as a book that "should explode the stereotypes about Hispanics that have clouded the minds of patronizing liberals and xenophobic conservatives alike." In 2000, Chavez was honored by the Library of Congress as a "Living Legend" for her contributions to America 's cultural and historical legacy.

Chavez has held a number of appointed positions, among them Chairman, National Commission on Migrant Education (1988-1992); White House Director of Public Liaison (1985); Staff Director of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights (1983-1985); and she was a member of the Administrative Conference of the United States (1984-1986). Chavez was the Republican nominee for U.S. Senator from Maryland in 1986. In 1992, she was elected by the United Nations' Human Rights Commission to serve a four-year term as U.S. Expert to the U.N. Sub-commission on the Prevention of Discrimination and Protection of Minorities.

Chavez was also editor of the prize-winning quarterly journal American Educator (1977-1983), published by the American Federation of Teachers, where she also served as assistant to AFT president Al Shanker (1982-1983) and assistant director of legislation (1975-1977).

She serves on the Board of Directors of ABM Industries, Inc., as well as on boards of several non-profit organizations, including the Foundation for Teaching Economics and the Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy. She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and was Co-Chair of the Council's Committee on Diversity (1998-2000).

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