Debora L. Osgood

Partner

Debbie Osgood is a partner in Hogan Marren Babbo & Rose, Ltd.’s Education Practice. Ms. Osgood is a nationally recognized expert on the civil rights laws and regulations that govern educational institutions, having joined the firm after 25 years at the U.S. Department of Education (DOE), Office for Civil Rights (OCR).

At HMBR, Ms. Osgood has represented educational institutions, including public and private colleges and universities, accrediting entities and nonprofit organizations on a wide range of educational policy and legal issues. Her area of specialty is educational civil rights, including general discrimination issues, sexual harassment and sexual violence, gender equity in athletics, racial harassment and accommodations for students and employees with disabilities. Ms. Osgood seeks to help educational institutions  position themselves to avoid legal claims of discrimination by students and employees and to effectively respond to these claims.

Prior to joining the firm, Ms. Osgood served as National Enforcement Director with the DOE’s Office for Civil Rights from June 2012 to February 2016. In this position, Ms. Osgood was a member of OCR’s senior leadership team and oversaw many of OCR’s twelve regional enforcement offices. She advised senior OCR and other Department officials and regional enforcement staff on the investigation and resolution of cases under each of the civil rights statutes enforced by OCR, including Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Age Discrimination Act of 1975. She also provided national leadership and extensive training to OCR managers and staff on numerous substantive and procedural issues, including Title IX sexual violence, Title IX athletics, and OCR’s “Case Processing Manual.”

In addition, Ms. Osgood worked collaboratively with other offices in the DOE; as well as other federal agencies, including the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), and state agencies on civil rights issues. She previously held the Office Director and Chief Attorney positions in OCR’s regional office in Chicago and worked at OCR under several administrations, including the Obama, Bush and Clinton administrations. While at the DOE, Ms. Osgood was selected as a member of the Federal Senior Executive Service, a cadre of top-ranking, career senior government executives with leadership and managerial expertise.

Prior to her government service, Ms. Osgood was an attorney with the Washington, D.C. law firm of Covington and Burling, specializing in federal communications and administrative law.

Representative matters include:

  • Comprehensive audits of Title IX compliance programs
  • Ongoing consulting on Title IX and other discrimination issues
  • Representation in OCR and other federal investigations
  • Advice on issues relating to sexual harassment and sexual violence litigation
  • Training of administrators and staff on civil rights education issues
  • Development and revision of policies and procedures, including policies and procedures relating to discrimination, sexual harassment, sexual violence and issues affecting students with disabilities
  • Independent investigations of accreditation, sexual harassment, and other discrimination matters, and retaliation issues
  • Development of a framework for a new institution-wide compliance program
  • Counsel on classification and access to endowment funds

Education

  • University of Michigan Law School (J.D., cum laude)
  • Brown University (B.A., History, Honors)

Admissions

  • District of Columbia (1988)
  • Illinois (1987)

 

  • Chicago Bar Association
  • National Association of College and University Attorneys
  • National Council of School Attorneys
  • Illinois Council of School Attorneys
  • Chicagoland Title IX Consortium (Advisory Board Member) 

Events

  • Co-Presenter, “The Shifting Legal Landscape on Sexual Orientation and Transgender Issues in Employment”, NACUA CLE Workshop: Higher Education Employment Law (March 2018).
  • Co-Presenter, “Title IX Investigations, Impacts and Policy,” and “Due Process in Title IX,” Stetson University College of Law: National Conference on Law and Higher Education (February 2018)
  • Presenter, Keynote Address: “The Road Next Travelled:  Policies, Procedures and Pro-action,” and “Recent OCR Guidance and Its Impact on Universities,” University of South Florida Title IX Conference (January 2018).
  • Presenter, “What to Expect: Federal Civil Rights Enforcement in Higher Education,” Marsh Inaugural Education Forum (2017)
  • Presenter, “OCR Update: What to Expect,” 2017 NASPA Student Affairs Law Conference (2017)
  • Co-Presenter, “Where is OCR Now: Recent Case Highlights and Process Updates,” University of Vermont Legal Issues in Higher Education Conference (2017)
  • Presenter, “The New Interim Title IX Guidance: What You Need to Know,” Chicagoland Title IX Consortium (2017)
  • Co-Presenter, How to Prevent a Title IX Lawsuit: Preventative Measures Universities Can Take,” Title IX ExecuSummit (2017).
  • Moderator, “Legal Issues When Retaining External Counsel,” NACUA Annual Conference (2017)
  • Co-Presenter, “Transgender Students: The Shifting Legal Landscape and What it All Means for Your Institution,” NACUA Annual Conference (2017)
  • Presenter, “Investigative Training: Issues Relating to Sexual Violence, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence and Stalking,” HMBR Seminar (2017)
  • Presenter, “The Fundamentals of Title IX,” Stetson University College of Law: National Conference on Law and Higher Education(2017)
  • Presenter, “Navigating Title IX,” Stetson University College of Law, Online Seminar (2017)
  • Moderator, “Race Relations and the First Amendment on College Campuses,” NACUA CLE Discrimination in Higher Education Workshop (2017)
  • Presenter, “Title IX and Clery Act/VAWA,” Private Career Colleges and Schools (2017 and 2016).
  • “Title IX Compliance,” Chicagoland Title IX Consortium (2017)
  • “What Would OCR Think?,” University of South Florida SystemTitle IX Conference (2016).
  • “Top 10 OCR Questions Answered,” Illinois Council of School Attorneys, Seminar on School Law (2016).
  • “Appropriate Response to Title IX Sexual Harassment and Sexual Violence on Campus: College and University Perspective,” U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights, OCR Chicago, OCR’s 2016 Civil Rights Seminar (2016)
  • Profile

    Debora L. Osgood

    Partner

    Debbie Osgood is a partner in Hogan Marren Babbo & Rose, Ltd.’s Education Practice. Ms. Osgood is a nationally recognized expert on the civil rights laws and regulations that govern educational institutions, having joined the firm after 25 years at the U.S. Department of Education (DOE), Office for Civil Rights (OCR).

    At HMBR, Ms. Osgood has represented educational institutions, including public and private colleges and universities, accrediting entities and nonprofit organizations on a wide range of educational policy and legal issues. Her area of specialty is educational civil rights, including general discrimination issues, sexual harassment and sexual violence, gender equity in athletics, racial harassment and accommodations for students and employees with disabilities. Ms. Osgood seeks to help educational institutions  position themselves to avoid legal claims of discrimination by students and employees and to effectively respond to these claims.

    Prior to joining the firm, Ms. Osgood served as National Enforcement Director with the DOE’s Office for Civil Rights from June 2012 to February 2016. In this position, Ms. Osgood was a member of OCR’s senior leadership team and oversaw many of OCR’s twelve regional enforcement offices. She advised senior OCR and other Department officials and regional enforcement staff on the investigation and resolution of cases under each of the civil rights statutes enforced by OCR, including Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Age Discrimination Act of 1975. She also provided national leadership and extensive training to OCR managers and staff on numerous substantive and procedural issues, including Title IX sexual violence, Title IX athletics, and OCR’s “Case Processing Manual.”

    In addition, Ms. Osgood worked collaboratively with other offices in the DOE; as well as other federal agencies, including the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), and state agencies on civil rights issues. She previously held the Office Director and Chief Attorney positions in OCR’s regional office in Chicago and worked at OCR under several administrations, including the Obama, Bush and Clinton administrations. While at the DOE, Ms. Osgood was selected as a member of the Federal Senior Executive Service, a cadre of top-ranking, career senior government executives with leadership and managerial expertise.

    Prior to her government service, Ms. Osgood was an attorney with the Washington, D.C. law firm of Covington and Burling, specializing in federal communications and administrative law.

    Representative matters include:

    • Comprehensive audits of Title IX compliance programs
    • Ongoing consulting on Title IX and other discrimination issues
    • Representation in OCR and other federal investigations
    • Advice on issues relating to sexual harassment and sexual violence litigation
    • Training of administrators and staff on civil rights education issues
    • Development and revision of policies and procedures, including policies and procedures relating to discrimination, sexual harassment, sexual violence and issues affecting students with disabilities
    • Independent investigations of accreditation, sexual harassment, and other discrimination matters, and retaliation issues
    • Development of a framework for a new institution-wide compliance program
    • Counsel on classification and access to endowment funds
  • Education/Admissions

    Education

    • University of Michigan Law School (J.D., cum laude)
    • Brown University (B.A., History, Honors)

    Admissions

    • District of Columbia (1988)
    • Illinois (1987)
  • Memberships/Affiliations

     

    • Chicago Bar Association
    • National Association of College and University Attorneys
    • National Council of School Attorneys
    • Illinois Council of School Attorneys
    • Chicagoland Title IX Consortium (Advisory Board Member) 
  • Publications/Events

    Events

    • Co-Presenter, “The Shifting Legal Landscape on Sexual Orientation and Transgender Issues in Employment”, NACUA CLE Workshop: Higher Education Employment Law (March 2018).
    • Co-Presenter, “Title IX Investigations, Impacts and Policy,” and “Due Process in Title IX,” Stetson University College of Law: National Conference on Law and Higher Education (February 2018)
    • Presenter, Keynote Address: “The Road Next Travelled:  Policies, Procedures and Pro-action,” and “Recent OCR Guidance and Its Impact on Universities,” University of South Florida Title IX Conference (January 2018).
    • Presenter, “What to Expect: Federal Civil Rights Enforcement in Higher Education,” Marsh Inaugural Education Forum (2017)
    • Presenter, “OCR Update: What to Expect,” 2017 NASPA Student Affairs Law Conference (2017)
    • Co-Presenter, “Where is OCR Now: Recent Case Highlights and Process Updates,” University of Vermont Legal Issues in Higher Education Conference (2017)
    • Presenter, “The New Interim Title IX Guidance: What You Need to Know,” Chicagoland Title IX Consortium (2017)
    • Co-Presenter, How to Prevent a Title IX Lawsuit: Preventative Measures Universities Can Take,” Title IX ExecuSummit (2017).
    • Moderator, “Legal Issues When Retaining External Counsel,” NACUA Annual Conference (2017)
    • Co-Presenter, “Transgender Students: The Shifting Legal Landscape and What it All Means for Your Institution,” NACUA Annual Conference (2017)
    • Presenter, “Investigative Training: Issues Relating to Sexual Violence, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence and Stalking,” HMBR Seminar (2017)
    • Presenter, “The Fundamentals of Title IX,” Stetson University College of Law: National Conference on Law and Higher Education(2017)
    • Presenter, “Navigating Title IX,” Stetson University College of Law, Online Seminar (2017)
    • Moderator, “Race Relations and the First Amendment on College Campuses,” NACUA CLE Discrimination in Higher Education Workshop (2017)
    • Presenter, “Title IX and Clery Act/VAWA,” Private Career Colleges and Schools (2017 and 2016).
    • “Title IX Compliance,” Chicagoland Title IX Consortium (2017)
    • “What Would OCR Think?,” University of South Florida SystemTitle IX Conference (2016).
    • “Top 10 OCR Questions Answered,” Illinois Council of School Attorneys, Seminar on School Law (2016).
    • “Appropriate Response to Title IX Sexual Harassment and Sexual Violence on Campus: College and University Perspective,” U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights, OCR Chicago, OCR’s 2016 Civil Rights Seminar (2016)
Debora L. Osgood