Joan Claybrook is the president emeritus of Public Citizen. Founded by Ralph Nader in 1971, Public Citizen is a nonprofit public interest advocacy organization that seeks to improve the health and safety of the public, protect civil rights and liberties, insure clean and safe energy sources, increase public availability of information and citizen participation in government decision-making, and strengthen campaign finance reform as well as accountability and fairness in the marketplace.
Claybrook has testified frequently before congressional committees. She regularly speaks to private groups and educational institutions regarding public interest issues. Current issues Claybrook is working on include product liability, campaign finance reform, health care reform, auto and highway safety, trade and regulatory policies.
Prior to becoming president of Public Citizen in 1982, Claybrook was an administrator at the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration of the U.S. Department of Transportation from 1977 to 1981. She was founder and director of Public Citizen’s Congress Watch, a congressional lobbying group from 1973 to 1977.
Claybrook’s professional affiliations and appointments include memberships on the boards of Consumers Union; Georgetown University Law Center; Citizens for Tax Justice; Trial Lawyers for Public Justice; Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety; Citizens for Reliable and Safe Highways; and The American Judicature Society. She has also received numerous honors and awards, among them the honorary doctor of law from Goucher College in 1980; the honorary doctor of public service from the University of Maryland in 1981; the Philip Hart Distinguished Consumer Service Award from the Consumer Federation of America in 1986; the Excellence in Public Service Award from Georgetown Law Center in 1990; and an honorary doctor of law from Georgetown University in 1993. Claybrook was a congressional fellow, with the American Political Science Association from 1965 to 1966.
Follow her on Twitter @JoanClaybrook.