Long-Time Litigator in Lesbian, Gay Civil Rights Leaves Lambda Legal Defense
(NEW YORK, June 22, 2000) —After nearly a decade of service, Suzanne B. Goldberg, one of the nation’s most experienced litigators in lesbian and gay civil rights, is departing the nation’s oldest and largest legal organization for lesbians, gay men and people with HIV. An attorney for Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund since 1991, Goldberg has played a pivotal role in the organization’s efforts to overturn sodomy laws, enforce fair immigration rules, defend domestic partner programs, and secure workplace protections.
“It has been a great honor to work as a Lambda attorney. I feel privileged to have represented many courageous lesbian, gay and HIV-positive clients and to have worked with an unbelievably talented legal team and larger staff dedicated to eradicating discrimination and insuring meaningful equality,” Goldberg said.
“I leave inspired to continue the battle for social justice in my new position,” she said shortly before her last day on the job, June 29. Goldberg joins the full-time faculty of Rutgers University Law School in Newark, N.J.
Most recently, Goldberg helped represent two gay men in their successful legal challenge to the Texas ‘Homosexual Conduct’ Law. In early June, a Texas Appeals Court ruled that the State’s sodomy law violates the equal rights protections of the State Constitution and cleared the men of earlier convictions following their arrests in the Houston home of one of the men.
Goldberg also played a notable role on the legal team that brought down the pernicious, anti-gay Amendment 2 passed in Colorado in 1992. That case, Romer v. Evans, resulted in the most profound civil rights victory for the lesbian and gay community to date, prompting the United States Supreme Court to affirm equal protection guarantees for lesbians and gay men. Goldberg wrote about that landmark case as co-author of the book Strangers to the Law: Gay People on Trial.
Said Lambda Legal Director Beatrice Dohrn, “Suzanne will always be remembered for her part in the heroic effort that brought down Amendment 2. Her years of work have made a meaningful impact on the everyday lives of lesbians and gay men throughout the country as well as on the area of civil rights law.”
In her tenure, Goldberg also made significant legal inroads for lesbians and gay immigrants. She provided invaluable advice, counsel and amicus brief support in asylum cases on behalf of applicants from, among other countries, Russia, Iran, Honduras and Brazil. Goldberg is a founder of the Lesbian and Gay Immigration Rights Task Force.
“Suzanne’s contribution to Lambda has been immeasurable,” said Lambda Deputy Legal Director Ruth E. Harlow, adding, “Our community is today far closer to realizing full equality before the law thanks to the work Suzanne Goldberg has done as a staff attorney at Lambda.”
Goldberg joined Lambda as its first Skadden Fellow after graduating from Harvard Law School in 1991. In September of last year, Goldberg and her partner celebrated the birth of their second child.
Contact: Peg Byron 212-809-8585 x 230, 888-987-1984 (pager)
Suzanne Goldberg 212-809-8585 x 214