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Penn Women’s Center Director: Michele Goldfarb
October 9, 2007, Volume 54, No. 7



Michele Goldfarb has assumed the role of director of the Penn Women’s Center after taking last year to teach full-time at Penn Law in the school’s litigation clinic.

Ms. Goldfarb takes a broad view of the role of the Penn Women’s Center (PWC). “Foremost, we have to be relevant to today’s generation of women,” Ms. Goldfarb explained. “Issues for women and feminism, aren’t the same as they were 30 years ago. But there are still issues. The Women’s Center is an informal setting where real women and men, across the age spectrum, can come together to share stories, ask questions and gain insight about work and life as a woman.”

To help foster a dynamic community, Ms. Goldfarb has also initiated renovations to the PWC at 3643 Locust, many of which involve freeing the floorplan, creating open space, redesigning meeting, workshop and study areas and enabling wireless access throughout the building.

Ms. Goldfarb was previously the director of Penn’s Office of Student Conduct, a position she held for 11 years (Almanac September 5, 2006). She has maintained her connection with Penn Law’s clinical programs as an adjunct professor, co-teaching in the mediation clinic.

Ms. Goldfarb has served on many University Committees charged with the creation and implementation of policy in a broad range of areas including academic integrity, substance abuse, confidentiality of student records, hazing and sexual assault. She has led numerous workshops and trainings on academic integrity and ethical issues. She is currently working on a project involving the interplay between changes in institutions of higher education in recent decades and the societal factors influencing those changes.

Previously she served as an Assistant District Attorney in Philadelphia and Assistant U.S. Attorney in Washington, D.C. where she prosecuted a wide variety of criminal offenses. As a full -time supervisor and faculty member at Penn Law’s litigation clinic in the early 1990s, she gained extensive experience as an advocate for families, women, children and victims of abuse and other violence. She held clerkships with the Hon. Stanley S. Harris, District of Columbia Court of Appeals and the Hon. Phyllis W. Beck, Superior Court of Pennsylvania (the first female appellate judge in the Commonwealth).

Ms. Goldfarb received her B.A. at Oberlin College in 1972 and her J.D. at American University in 1975.

Almanac - October 9, 2007, Volume 54, No. 7