Metropolitan News-Enterprise


Friday, October 14, 2011


Page 3


Saenz to Be Recognized by White House Today


By a MetNews Staff Writer


The White House is expected to honor veteran civil rights attorney Thomas A. Saenz today as one of America’s “champions of change.”

Saenz is currently president and general counsel of MALDEF, the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund. According to a White House statement yesterday, the “Champions for Change” program hosts “leaders from communities large and small, who are dedicating their professional lives to closing the justice gap in America..” Saenz was one of 16 “Champions” honored today at the weekly recognition event.

Saenz was invited to participate in a roundtable discussion of the importance of providing legal services to those in need. According to the statement, “More than 110 law schools will view the event via live-stream and inspire students to join in the effort to secure basic rights for all Americans.”

From Los Angeles, Saenz heads MALDEF’s five national offices in pursuing litigation, policy advocacy and community education to promote civil rights for Latinos living in the United States. From 2005 to 2009, he left MALDEF to be Counsel to Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa. He previously was MALDEF’s lead counsel in the successful challenge of California’s Proposition 187.

He is a graduate of Yale College and Yale Law School.


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