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National Center for Lesbian Rights hires leading civil rights attorney as deputy director

SAN FRANCISCO -- The National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR) announced that Arcelia Hurtado, one of the nation’s leading civil rights attorneys, will be joining its staff as the new deputy director, responsible for overseeing the organization’s day-to-day operations, and helping lead future planning, strategy and development initiatives.

For the last two years, Hurtado has served as the executive director of Equal Rights Advocates (ERA), a San Francisco-based civil rights organization dedicated to advancing equal opportunity for women and girls through impact litigation and advocacy.

“We are incredibly excited to have Arcelia join NCLR,” Executive Director Kate Kendell said. “She brings a strong progressive vision and a wealth of organizational and legal experience to this critical role. Her skills, values, and leadership are a great match for NCLR, and her voice and talents will elevate our impact.”

Hurtado, a Texas native, earned her law degree from the University of California, Berkeley, and has devoted her career to advancing and protecting the rights of women, immigrants, and criminal defendants.

Before leading ERA, she was a deputy public defender for San Francisco County and Santa Clara County, and taught constitutional and criminal law at Bay Area law schools. In addition to her professional experience, she has served on the boards of many professional and non-profit organizations. She is also a frequent contributor to the Huffington Post and other outlets, where she writes on a wide range of social justice and civil rights issues.

“I’m thrilled to join NCLR, where I hope to continue and strengthen NCLR’s legacy of cutting edge litigation and commitment to social justice," Hurtado said. "I am very grateful for this opportunity to work on behalf of LGBT equality and inclusion and use the experience and skills I have gained in my past positions to help NCLR continue its great work. I am proud of all that Equal Rights Advocates has accomplished during my tenure and look forward to future collaborations.”

Former NCLR board co-chair Emily Doskow, who sat on the hiring committee, said she is pleased with the selection of Hurtado.

“The board is very much looking forward to having Arcelia join the NCLR team," Doskow said. "Her dedication to LGBT equality, combined with her long experience working on social justice issues, will make her a great asset to the organization and the movement.”

Hurtado replaces Kris Hermanns, who left NCLR in December 2011 to lead the Pride Foundation as its new executive director. Hurtado begins her new role with NCLR in April.

More information about NCLR is available HERE.