Feb 14

Black History Month – Claudia Gordon

Jamaican born Claudia Gordon lost her hearing at the age of eight, halting her education. Three years later she moved to the United States, excited at the possibility of continuing her learning. Claudia Gordon would eventually become first deaf female Black lawyer to graduate from law school and pursued a career centered around helping individuals with disabilities.  

Throughout her career, Gordon has held various positions dedicated to improving the experiences of individuals with disabilities. In 2003 she was the recipient of the Paul G. Hearne Leadership Award from the American Association of People with Disabilities, an award that recognizes exceptional emerging leaders with disabilities who embody advocacy and leadership across the disability community. A year later, Gordon served as the vice president for the National Black Deaf Advocates. In 2005 during the wake of Hurricane Katrina Gordon’s primary duty was enforcing executive orders for individuals with disabilities in emergency preparedness situations. 

Gordon took her influence to the White House becoming the first deaf person to work at the White House in a detailee capacity. She served as Associate Director of Public Engagement, advising former President Barack Obama and White offices on disability policy. She also worked with the U.S. Department of Labor in the Office of Federal Contract Compliances in various capacities. Gordon currently provides oversight on telecommunication industry standards for T-Mobile in addition to influencing organization-wide diversity and inclusion initiatives for customers, job seekers with disabilities and partners. To learn more about Lydia Gordon and her contributions as a disability advocate click here

Photo of Claudia Gordon