Global Conference 2017

Speaker's Biography

Jocelyn Benson

CEO, Ross Initiative in Sports for Equality (RISE)

Jocelyn Benson is CEO of the Ross Initiative in Sports for Equality (RISE), an alliance of professional sports leagues, organizations, athletes, educators, media networks and sports professionals using sports to improve race relations. An expert on civil rights law, education law and election law, Benson served for four years as dean of Wayne State University Law School in Detroit. She continues to serve as director of the Levin Center at Wayne Law, which she founded with former U.S. Sen. Carl Levin. Previously, she was an associate professor and associate director of Wayne Law’s Damon J. Keith Center for Civil Rights, where she created the Michigan Allies Project to track hate incidents throughout Michigan and provide legal support for victims. Benson serves on the Board of Directors for the Southern Poverty Law Center, where she previously worked investigating hate groups and hate crimes. She earned a bachelor of arts from Wellesley College, master of philosophy from Oxford University and law degree from Harvard Law School.


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