Alexis Herman’s life has been characterized by a series of firsts. She was the first African American Secretary of Labor under Bill Clinton, Jimmy Carter’s youngest Director of the Women’s Bureau at age twenty-nine, and the first African American to lead a major Political Party’s Nominating Convention for President of the United States.
She developed an employment initiative, in the 1970s, the Minority Women’s Employment Program, that should have been named “Breakthrough.” As its Developer and Director she placed the first women of color in managerial positions in numerous corporations including Delta Airlines, Shell Oil and General Motors. It was in that capacity she met her life long mentor and friend, Dorothy Height, who served as the Chair of her Advisory Board.
Today she continues to assist women in big and small ways. She enjoys personally coaching and counseling young women about their careers, and in her business, New Ventures, she assists major corporations in removing workplace barriers.
Her volunteer work includes being a trustee of the Clinton-Bush Haiti Fund, President of the Dorothy I. Height Education Foundation, and Lifetime Membership support of Dorothy Height’s beloved, National Council of Negro women (NCNW).