Acting Assistant Attorney General for the Department of Justice Civil Rights Division, Vanita Gupta, is set to deliver the keynote address at the 2015 NCIL Annual Conference in Washington, DC. In addition to her tremendous contributions to the legal sector of Civil Rights, Gupta has been a strong advocate in legal matters regarding education and disability rights.
A significant figure in the fight to promote equal rights for all, Gupta has recently spoken on behalf of the United States Department of Justice regarding matters ranging from the unlawful flagging of scores of LSAT test takers receiving disability accommodations by LSAC (Law School Admissions Council), to advocating for parenting rights of individuals who have mental or physical limitations and have been wrongfully refused rights relating to their own children. Upon her graduation from New York University School of Law, Gupta began her legal career with the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, her first notable case succeeded in the effort to overturn the wrongful drug convictions of 38 individuals in Tulia, Texas.
Gupta was appointed to her current position by President Barack Obama in October 2014, and prior to that she held the title of Deputy Legal Director of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). Gupta represents a groundbreaking trifecta for her current position: the first woman, the first South Asian, and, at 39, the youngest Assistant Attorney General in the department’s history. Born in the Philadelphia area to Indian immigrant parents, Gupta holds a B.A. from Yale University and a J.D. from New York University School of Law. In 2011, the National Law Journal recognized Gupta as a Top 40 Minority Lawyer Under 40.Ms. Gupta is married to Chinh Q. Le, Esq., Legal Director of the Legal Aid Society in Washington, D.C. The couple has one son.