Gary Orfield
Distinguished Research Professor of Education, Law, Political Science and Urban Planning


  • Civil rights
  • Demographics
  • Race and diversity

Gary Orfield is a distinguished research professor of education, law, political science and urban planning at UCLA. His research interests are in civil rights, education policy, urban policy and minority opportunity. He was co-founder and director of the Harvard Civil Rights Project, and now serves as co-director of the Civil Rights Project/Proyecto Derechos Civiles at UCLA. His central interest has been the development and implementation of social policy, with a central focus on the impact of policy on equal opportunity for success in American society. Recent works include eight co-authored or co-edited books and numerous articles and reports. Orfield has also been involved in the development of governmental policy and has served as an expert witness or special master in dozens of court cases, including the University of Michigan Supreme Court case which upheld the policy of affirmative action in 2003. He has received the American Political Science Association’s Charles Merriam Award and the 2007 Social Justice in Education Award by the American Educational Research Association. Orfield received his doctorate from the University of Chicago and travels extensively in Latin America.