John Brittain is a professor of law at the University of the District of Columbia. He previously served as General Counsel and Senior Deputy Director at the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law. As Chief Counsel, he was responsible for determining civil rights litigation strategies and public policy issues. He assisted in filing numerous amicus briefs in the Supreme Court and many other federal and state courts. Prior to his work at the Lawyer’s Committee, Brittain was a law professor at the University of Connecticut School of Law in Hartford, and Dean of the Thurgood Marshall School of Law in Houston. Professor Brittain is a school desegregation specialist and was one of the lawyers who filed the landmark Sheff v. O’Neill school desegregation case in 1989. This lawsuit challenged the racial, economic, and educational segregation between Hartford and the surrounding school districts as a denial of a student’s fundamental right to an equal education under the Connecticut Constitution. In 1993, the NAACP awarded Professor Brittain the coveted William Robert Ming Advocacy Award for legal service to the NAACP without a fee. Brittain earned his B.A. and J.D degrees from Howard University and specializes in civil rights litigation theories in education, voting rights, affirmative action, affordable housing, and police misconduct.
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