Internationally recognised expert in labor, employment, diversity, workers, and the workplace
Obama Administration Cabinet Secretary and Deputy Secretary, 2009-14
Distinguished Scholar, Cornell University; author, teacher, attorney, and advisor
Seth Harris is an internationally recognised expert in policies affecting workers and employers, as well as a leading voice for diversity and inclusion in the American economy, particularly for workers with disabilities. After four and one-half years as Deputy U.S. Secretary of Labor, Seth Harris joined President Obama’s Cabinet as the Acting U.S. Secretary of Labor in 2013.
Throughout his career, Secretary Harris has advised two presidents, several presidential campaigns, numerous Cabinet secretaries and members of Congress, and major corporations and unions about the law, policy, and politics of labor and employment in the United States and around the world.
Since 2014, Secretary Harris has been a Distinguished Scholar at Cornell University’s School of Industrial & Labor Relations where he teaches law and public policy. He is also Counsel at Dentons, the global law firm, and a member of the Board of Directors of the United Cerebral Palsy Association. He has been a frequent commentator on Al-Jazeera America television and quoted extensively in the Wall Street Journal, CNN.com, Politico, the Washington Post, Bloomberg Businessweek, and other publications.
Beyond his role in shaping and implementing the Obama Administration’s and Labor Department’s policy agendas, Secretary Harris sparked and led the Labor Department’s dramatic performance turnaround. In 2014, the Government Accountability Office found that the Labor Department, under Secretary Harris’s leadership, was the top Cabinet agency using evidence-based data-driven management to better serve the department’s constituents and the only Cabinet agency that significantly improved its performance during the Obama presidency. Secretary Harris has spoken and written about his performance management success and counsels senior government officials about how to improve their organizations’ performance.
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