ICAS Bulletin
Institute for Corean-American Studies, Inc.

March 27, 2009

John Trasviña
ICAS Fellow


Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity
US Department of Housing and Urban Development

Dear Friend:

We are pleased to share with you that President Barack Obama today nominated John Trasviña to serve as assistant secretary for fair housing and equal opportunity in the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

John is former Special Counsel, Civil Rights Division, U S Department of Justice. He was nominated by President Clinton and confirmed unanimously by the United States Senate in 1997 to be Special Counsel for Immigration Related Unfair Employment Practices. The Office of Special Counsel was established in 1987 to protect U.S. citizens and other work authorized individuals from employment discrimination based on immigration status. The Office litigates claims and educates employees, employers and the general public on their rights and responsibilities under the law in order to prevent such discrimination. As Special Counsel, John was the highest ranking Hispanic attorney at the U.S. Department of Justice.

For three and three-quarter years, John served as Deputy Assistant Attorney General for Legislative Affairs at the U.S. Department of Justice. From 1987 to 1993, he was counsel to Senator Paul Simon on the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee, the last 3 years as General Counsel and Staff Director to the Senate Subcommittee on the Constitution. In the Senate and in his previous post in the Administration, he handled numerous policy areas, including Civil Rights, Immigration and Judicial Nominations.

A native of San Francisco, John was Deputy City Attorney there from 1983 to 1985 and Legislative Counsel to the Mexican American Legal Defense & Educational Fund in Washington D.C. from 1985 to 1987.

A graduate of Harvard University and Stanford Law School, John is a long time member of Hispanic and Asian American community organizations including the D.C. Hispanic Bar Association where he is past president and the Hispanic National Bar Association where he was past national vice president and regional president; the Conference on Asian Pacific American Leadership where John served as a member of the board of directors; and the D.C. Commission on Asian and Pacific Islander Affairs where he was vice chair.

In 1995, Hispanic Business Magazine recognized him as one of the 100 most influential Hispanics in the United States. In 2000, he was honored with the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund's Award for Excellence in the Legal Profession and the Conference on Asian Pacific American Leadership's Distinguished Service Award.

John was an invited speaker at the ICAS 2001 Summer Symposium where he addressed "Immigrants' Rights and Responsibilities" and named ICAS Fellow on December 5, 2001.

Thank you.

Sang Joo Kim / signed
Sr. Fellow & Executive Vice President

ICAS Fellow
Speakers &