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Mindy A. Kaiden

U.S. Department of Transportation

2023 fellow

Mindy Kaiden is the Assistant Chief Counsel for Operations and Administration at the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA ) in the Department of Transportation. During her more than 20 years as a Federal Government attorney specializing in employment law, Ms. Kaiden personally handled or supervised hundreds of litigation cases, as well as advised on the most complex and sensitive individual employment matters and personnel policy initiatives.

At FHWA, she leads a national team of attorneys who advise, litigate, and provide training on federal personnel and workforce policy matters. She recently had a major role in developing, establishing, and implementing FHWA’s first anti-harassment coordination process as well as advising on FHWA’s Future of Work, remote work, and reasonable accommodation programs. Ms. Kaiden received an FHWA Executive Director’s Challenge Coin in 2021 and an FHWA Administrator’s Award in 2022 for her significant role on teams addressing workforce issues. Previously, at the Department of Justice, Ms. Kaiden defended the agency in individual and class action litigation brought by employees and applicants and provided legal advice on individual and enterprise personnel matters, including the development of validated selection and promotion systems. For more than seven years, Ms. Kaiden led the final stage implementation of a settlement resolving a multi-issue class action discrimination case. The settlement required changes to 14 personnel areas, including promotions, hiring, discipline, performance appraisals, and awards.

Before entering government service, Ms. Kaiden served as in-house counsel at Thompson Publishing Group and as a litigation Associate at Steptoe & Johnson LLP. Ms. Kaiden clerked for the Honorable Frank E. Schwelb on the District of Columbia Court of Appeals. Ms. Kaiden holds a bachelor’s degree in biology and society from Cornell University and a law degree from the American University Washington College of Law. As a White House Leadership Development Program Fellow, she will work with the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) on transformational workforce initiatives in support of the President’s Management Agenda, including developing a government-wide Future of the Workforce vision and strategy, establishing a Community of Practice on government employee well-being and mental health, and planning and piloting several OPM customer engagement initiatives.

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