Dorian L. Spence serves as Director of Special Litigation and Advocacy at the national Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law where he coordinates work that cuts across the organization’s projects and directs when, and how, the organization responds to matters that lie beyond the scope of the Lawyers’ Committee’s current projects.
Prior to his current role, Dorian served as Counsel in the Lawyers’ Committee’s Voting Rights Project, as well as the Fair Housing and Community Development Project. As Counsel, he led the organization’s litigation efforts in North Carolina (Hall v. Jones County Board of Commissioners, and Action N.C. v. Strach — challenges to discrimination in voting) and Oklahoma (on behalf of the Metro Tulsa Urban League). He also worked on fair housing initiatives and contributed to the investigation of Fair Housing Act violations. In addition to litigation, Dorian played a significant role in the organization’s organizing, education and advocacy efforts. He served as the lead attorney for the 2014 and 2016 Election Protection programs in Ohio, North Carolina, and Louisiana where he coordinated voter protection programs for state and federal elections.
Dorian was also instrumental in developing the Lawyers’ Committee’s Know Your Rights Initiative. In the immediate aftermath of the murders of Alton Sterling (Baton Rouge, Louisiana) and Keith Scott (Charlotte, North Carolina), Dorian helped to organize a network of pro-bono lawyers that provided representation and helped to protect the First Amendment rights of people engaged in peaceful demonstrations.
Prior to joining the Lawyers’ Committee, Dorian served as Counsel at H. Barritt Peterson Jr., and Associates in Baltimore, Maryland. During that time, he represented hundreds of clients in the District Courts and Circuits Courts across the state of Maryland.
Dorian began his legal career as a Fellow at the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. in Washington, D.C. where he worked in the organization’s Political Participation Group. He has spoken on numerous panels, served as guest lecturer at Howard University School of Law and Georgetown University, made several media appearances, and written articles on racial justice.
Dorian earned his undergraduate degree from Ohio University and his law degree from the School of Law at Wake Forest University. He is a member of the Maryland Bar.