Jocelyn Benson

Jocelyn Benson, Southern Poverty Law Center

Jocelyn Benson is CEO of the Ross Initiative in Sports for Equality (RISE), a venture by professional sports organizations to improve race relations in America. At age 35, Benson became the youngest woman to lead a top 100 law school in U.S. history, serving as dean of Wayne State University Law School from 2012 to 2016.

She is founder and former president of Military Spouses of Michigan. In 2015, Benson was inducted into the Michigan Women’s Hall of Fame. After earning a degree from Wellesley College, she earned a master of philosophy degree as a Marshall Scholar at Oxford University and a law degree from Harvard Law School.

She began her career as an intern and researcher in the SPLC’s Intelligence Project.