Updated at 3:50 pm
The U.S. Senate has confirmed Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll partner Jenny Yang to serve as a commissioner of the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
Yang, whose term will expire July 1, 2017, fills the spot left vacant when Democrat Stuart Ishimaru resigned last year to head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s Office of Minority and Women Inclusion.
At Cohen Milstein, Yang was among the lawyers who represented 1.5 million women in the Wal-Mart Stores Inc. v. Dukes sex-discrimination class action. The U.S. Supreme Court in 2011 tossed the case, the biggest discrimination class action in history.
Yang also represented more than 28,000 female employees in Washington State alleging sex discrimination in pay and promotion in Beck v. The Boeing Company. The case settled in 2004 for $72 million, according to the Seattle Times.
Before joining Cohen Milstein’s Washington office in 2003, Yang was a senior trial attorney in the Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division. Her confirmation on April 25 was applauded by The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights.
“We are confident in Yang’s ability to serve our nation well through thoughtful and deliberate enforcement of employment discrimination protections and equal employment opportunity programs,” said Wade Henderson, president, in a statement.
"I am honored that President Obama nominated me, and the Senate confirmed me, to serve as a commissioner of the EEOC," Yang said in an email. "It will be a privilege to work with my colleagues at the EEOC to ensure equal opportunity for all."