University Of Colorado Appoints National Gender Equity Expert And Legal Scholar Nancy Hogshead-Makar As Title IX Consultant

March 10, 2008

The University of Colorado at Boulder and the law firm of Hutchinson, Black & Cook, counsel for Lisa Simpson, today jointly announced the appointment of prominent attorney, professor and national Title IX legal expert Nancy Hogshead-Makar as the school’s Title IX adviser. CU-Boulder agreed to create the adviser’s position as part of the settlement of Ms. Simpson’s Title IX lawsuit.

“We are fortunate to have one of the nation’s most distinguished experts in Title IX to help us build upon the athletic and campus culture reforms we have already implemented and to continue our pursuit of a national leadership position in how athletic departments interface with the university as a whole,” said CU-Boulder Chancellor G.P. “Bud” Peterson. “I am both pleased and honored that she has chosen to work with us, and I look forward to hearing her advice and counsel.”

Hogshead-Makar will work with CU officials in athletics, the office of university counsel and the office of CU-Boulder Chancellor G.P. “Bud” Peterson to review the university’s policies and practices regarding sexual violence and harassment for CU students. She will make recommendations on creating enhancements and programmatic improvements in these areas, as well as acting as a resource for students who have experienced sexual harassment on campus.

“I am delighted to be working with the University of Colorado,” said Hogshead-Makar. “I am eager to begin my visits to Boulder and to begin working with a group of committed educators, administrators, student-athletes and community members for the betterment of the university community, and especially for the women of the CU-Boulder campus.”

Hogshead-Makar is a tenured professor at Florida Coastal School of Law in Jacksonville, Fla. She is one of the country’s foremost experts in Title IX and has been a dedicated advocate for the advancement of women’s issues, particularly in athletics. She is a past president of the Women’s Sports Foundation and currently serves as its legal adviser. Her book, “Equal Play: Title IX and Social Change,” co-authored with sports economist Andrew Zimbalist, was recently released.

Professor Hogshead-Makar is a graduate cum laude of Duke University in political science and women’s studies (1986) and holds a Juris Doctor degree from the Georgetown University Law Center (1997). While at Duke, she set school swimming records in eight different events. She qualified for the 1980 Moscow Olympics (which the United States boycotted) and swam in the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics, where she won three gold medals and a silver medal. She has been inducted into 11 halls of fame for her athletic accomplishments and contributions to sports.

“In our view, there is no one in the country better qualified to take on the role of Title IX adviser envisioned in the settlement,” said Baine Kerr, legal counsel for Lisa Simpson. “Her appointment is an important step in the university’s commitment to address the problems that gave rise to Ms. Simpson’s lawsuit, and we believe it is a measure that will become a model for universities across the country.”

In the settlement of the Title IX litigation, the university agreed to appoint an independent Title IX adviser to assist it in identifying any further reforms that will prevent sexual harassment and misconduct. The university has also committed to add a violence prevention coordinator on the Boulder campus. That position has been posted and the campus is accepting applications.

“I’m excited the university is appointing someone of Professor Hogshead-Makar’s stature,” said Simpson. “I’m hopeful this will lead to continuing changes that will prevent what I went through from happening to other women at this and other universities.”

Professor Hogshead-Makar is expected to begin working with the University of Colorado in April. Details of her consulting contract are currently being finalized.

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