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Monday, October 2, 2017
Civil Rights Lawyer Mary Bonauto to Give Lecture on November 6
Mary Bonauto, Civil Rights Project Director at Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders, will give the 2017–2018 Robert H. Preiskel and Leon Silverman Program on the Practicing Lawyer and the Public Interest on November 6, 2017, at 4:30 pm in the Faculty Lounge. Bonauto’s lecture will be titled “Climbing the Arc of Justice: Progress for and Contestation of LGBTQ People.”
Bonauto will discuss phases of ongoing advocacy for LGBTQ people: the period before the recent marriage litigation, through the state and federal marriage litigation culminating in Obergefell v Hodges, and since that ruling in 2015, where issues of non-discrimination and exemptions are at the fore.
Mary L. Bonauto is a nationally renowned litigator who has been the Civil Rights Project Director at Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders since 1990. In her time, there she has celebrated a number of historic and groundbreaking victories, including her involvement in Baker v. State of Vermont, which led to the nation’s first civil union law and Goodridge v. Department of Public Health, which made Massachusetts the first state where same-sex couples could legally marry. She also brought the first successful challenges to the federal Defense of Marriage Act and is currently co-counsel on the Michigan marriage case currently before the United States Supreme Court. Her work has been recognized with numerous awards, including most recently the 2014 MacArthur Fellowship.
The Robert H. Preiskel and Leon Silverman Program on the Practicing Lawyer and the Public Interest was established by the law firm of Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson in honor of Robert H. Preiskel ’48 and Leon Silverman ’48 to sponsor lectures and other events celebrating private lawyers’ contributions to the public interest.