Sunday, September 17, 2006

Gabby and St. Patrick

And they blame it on Democrats and Republicans. It sure isn’t partisan. I could argue, you know, hey, it’s really Republican, you know. But they don’t see it as a single party issue at all, and that frustration is, I think, a reason to consider a candidate whose achievements are most — obviously, mostly not on the political side. I am the most — you know, I think I am the most experienced person in actually getting stuff done in government you could possibly be, who is a total outsider.


After serving as a law clerk for a year to a federal appellate judge, Deval joined the NAACP Legal Defense Fund (LDF) in 1983 where he devoted most of his time to death penalty and voting rights cases. It was at LDF that Deval first met then-Governor Bill Clinton whom he sued in a voting rights case in Arkansas. Clinton worked with Deval to settle the case and the two began a relationship of strong mutual respect and admiration that continues today.

Deval left LDF in 1986 to join the Boston law firm of Hill & Barlow, where he became a partner in 1990. In addition to his private practice, he spent much of his time on pro-bono work, including a landmark lending scam case on behalf of Massachusetts' senior citizens. He also served as volunteer Chairman of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund's New England Committee and as a member of its National Board of Directors.

In 1994, President Clinton appointed Deval Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights, the nation's top civil rights post. Deval worked on a wide range of issues at the Justice Department including the investigation of church burnings throughout the South in the mid-1990s, prosecution of hate crimes and abortion clinic violence, cases of employment discrimination, and enforcement of the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Deval returned to private practice in 1997 with the Boston firm of Day, Berry & Howard. That same year, he was appointed by a federal district court to serve as the first chairperson of Texaco's Equality and Fairness Task Force, following the settlement of a significant race discrimination case at the company. He and his Task Force carefully reexamined and rebuilt the company's entire system of employment practices in a successful effort to create a more equitable workplace for everyone. Recognizing his unique ability to bring people together to get things done, Texaco hired Deval as Vice President and General Counsel in 1999, placing him in charge of its global legal affairs.

Next, Deval joined The Coca-Cola Company as Executive Vice President and General Counsel. He was elected to the additional position of Corporate Secretary in 2002. In these roles he was responsible for the company's worldwide legal affairs. He also served on the Company's Executive Committee - its senior leadership team. After nearly six years of commuting to Atlanta and New York, Deval resigned his post at Coca-Cola last year.

Deval has served on several charitable and corporate boards, as well as the Federal Election Reform Commission under Presidents Carter and Ford, and as Vice Chair of the Massachusetts Judicial Nominating Council by appointment of Governor Weld. He is the recipient of seven honorary degrees, including from Clark University in Worcester, Suffolk Law School in Boston, Northeastern University School of Law in Boston, and Curry College in Milton.

Good luck Gabrielli. Use your money. You need it. Emphasis all mine.