Anita F. Hill

Brandeis University Professor of Law, Social Policy & Women's and Gender Studies | Chair of the Hollywood Commission
2022 ABA Silvere Gavel Award for Books

The youngest of 13 children from a farm in rural Oklahoma, Anita Hill received her J.D. from Yale Law School in 1980. She began her career in private practice in Washington, D.C. Before becoming a law professor, she worked at the U. S. Education Department and Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. In 1989, Hill became the first African American to be tenured at the University of Oklahoma, College of Law, where she taught contracts and commercial law. She has made presentations to hundreds of business, professional, academic and civic organizations in the United States and abroad.

As counsel to Cohen Milstein, Anita Hill advises on class action workplace discrimination cases.

Hill's book, Believing: Our Thirty-Year Journey to End Gender Violence, is the winner of the 2022 ABA Silver Gavel Award for Books. It is a new manifesto about the origins and course of gender violence in our society; a combination of memoir, personal accounts, law, and social analysis, and a powerful call to arms from one of our most prominent and poised survivors.

Anita’s previous book is Reimagining Equality: Stories of Gender, Race and Finding Home. She has also written an autobiography, Speaking Truth to Power. With Professor Emma Coleman Jordan she co-edited, Race, Gender and Power in America: The Legacy of the Hill-Thomas Hearings.

Professor Hill’s commentary has been published in TIME, Newsweek, The New York Times, The Boston Globe, and Ms. Magazine. She has appeared on national television programs including Good Morning America, Meet the Press, The Today Show, The Tavis Smiley Show and Larry King Live.

Professor Hill has received numerous honorary degrees and civic awards. She has chaired the Human Rights Law Committee of the International Bar Association. In addition, she is on the Board of Governors of the Tufts Medical Center and the Board of Directors of the National Women’s Law Center and the Boston Area Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights.


  • Brandeis University Professor of Law, Social Policy & Women's and Gender Studies
  • Chair of the Hollywood Commission
  • 2019 PEN Courage Award
  • Author, Believing, Reimagining Equality and Speaking Truth to Power
  • Chair, Human Rights Law Committee of the International Bar Association
  • TIME magazine's 100 Women of the Year for 1991
  • Board of Governors, Tufts Medical Center
  • Board of Directors, National Women’s Law Center and the Boston Area Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights
  • J.D. from Yale Law School in 1980
  • U. S. Education Department and Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
  • Professor, University of Oklahoma, College of Law


Reimagining Equality

American history is peppered with social movements that fought for the equal rights of marginalized groups: the civil rights, women’s rights, and LGBTQ rights movements, to name a few. It cannot be denied that we’ve made great progress as a nation, but it must be recognized that there is still much work to be done. Professor and advocate Anita Hill asks us to reimagine equality and what it takes to get there. How do we move beyond the legal rights that are necessary but ultimately limited in scope to a place of true belonging, acceptance, and embrace? The fight for equality cannot be won by simply changing laws. It is a collective and sustained effort in which we all have a role. In this talk, Hill urges you to discover your unique contribution to the greater good and to making the spaces you inhabit a welcoming home for all.

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Believing: The First Step to Change

When Anita Hill testified against then Supreme Court nominee Clarence Thomas in 1991 with allegations of workplace sexual harassment, she made history by bringing a conversation usually shrouded in shame and handled behind closed doors into the public consciousness. Her intrepid testimony, challenging one of the country’s oldest and strongest institutions, inspired others with similar experiences to share their stories and come together to create change. Inciting moments like these make clear the power and impact of a single story, a single voice, a single action. When the time comes, will you be brave enough to stand up for the things that matter? It has been over 30 years since her testimony and the fight for gender equality continues. This talk will leave you with the information, inspiration, and motivation necessary to confidently grab the baton and do your part in the cause that sparks your fire.

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Why Anita Hill Still Believes in the Supreme Court
Anita F. Hill
Recognizing Components Is Key To Fighting Extremist Violence
Anita F. Hill
Attorney and professor Anita Hill on her new book and combating gender violence
Anita F. Hill
Anita Hill: 'The Behavior Begins In Adolescence'
Anita F. Hill
Anita Hill gives powerful commencement speech at Wellesley College
Anita F. Hill
Anita Hill Issues Dire Warning: Expect Stronger Restrictions On Reproductive Rights In Coming Years
Anita F. Hill


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Anita Hill Takes On Those 'Trying to Put Black Women in a Box'
The New York Times
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Anita Hill: Let’s Talk About How to End Sexual Violence
The New York Times
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Anita Hill Has Some Perspective to Offer
The New York Times


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