President Biden Appoints New Agency Heads

Allen Smith, J.D. By Allen Smith, J.D. January 21, 2021
EEOC letterhead and a pen

​President Joe Biden has named new heads of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) and National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). We've gathered articles on this news from SHRM Online and other trusted sources.

Burrows Named Chair of EEOC

Biden named Charlotte Burrows as chair of the EEOC. Burrows has served as an EEOC commissioner since 2015, having been initially nominated by former President Barack Obama. In 2019, she was re-nominated and unanimously confirmed for a second term ending in 2023. The EEOC has three Republican commissioners—Janet Dhillon, Keith Sonderling and Andrea Lucas—and two Democrat commissioners—Burrows and Jocelyn Samuels. Samuels is the agency's new vice chair.

(EEOC) and (SHRM Online)

New Head of OFCCP Named

Former EEOC Chair Jenny Yang is the new director of the OFCCP. The OFCCP director usually is appointed by the secretary of labor, a position that needs Senate confirmation. But the OFCCP director does not need confirmation, so Yang likely was hand-picked by the Biden administration for the role. Yang was appointed chair of the EEOC by Obama, serving in that role from September 2014 through January 2017.

(DCI Consulting)

McFerran Will Lead NLRB

The NLRB's sole Democratic member, Lauren McFerran, was named chair of the board Jan. 20. "I am deeply grateful for the opportunity to continue serving with our extraordinary agency staff in this new capacity," McFerran said. "In these turbulent times for working people, the mission of the board and the rights we protect are more important than ever. I look forward to this new chapter in the board's work, redoubling our efforts to serve the act's goals—'encouraging the practice and procedure of collective bargaining and … protecting the exercise by workers of full freedom of association.' " The NLRB also has three Republicans—John Ring, Marvin Kaplan and William Emanuel—and one vacant board member seat.

(NLRB) and (Reuters)

Expect More Pay-Equity Enforcement

Federal contractors should expect renewed enforcement by the OFCCP on pay-discrimination issues. Contractors could face more-aggressive OFCCP action due to the possible revival of the requirement for federal contractors—and others—to submit employee pay data as part of their annual EEO-1 submission. If the requirement is revived, the Biden administration could review contractors' EEO-1 submissions to locate potential pay-discrimination issues. Nonetheless, contractors may litigate to resist OFCCP reviews initiated based on EEO-1 submissions.

(The National Law Review)

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