Sexual Harassment at Work: Policy, Practice, Law

ILR moving the conversation forward
Cornell University
Thursday, March 8, 2018

The Cornell University ILR School's "Sexual Harassment at Work: Policy, Practice and Law" forum will be 2:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. March 19 in the Alice Statler Auditorium on the Cornell campus. It is free and open to the public.

It will feature expert insight from scholars, a national policymaker, a chief human resources officer and a workplace law practitioner. They will discuss one of today's most important public issues – sexual harassment in the workplace.

Special Guests:

  • Kirsten Gillibrand, United States Senator for New York
  • Martha E. Pollack, President of Cornell University

Kevin F. Hallock, Kenneth F. Kahn '69 Dean, Joseph R. Rich '80 Professor of Economics and Human Resource Studies, Cornell ILR School


  • Mark Brossman, partner, Schulte Roth & Zabel
  • Alexander Colvin, associate dean for academic affairs, diversity and faculty development, and Martin F. Scheinman Professor of Conflict Resolution, Cornell ILR School
  • Lisa Nishii, vice provost for undergraduate education for Cornell University and associate professor, human resource studies, Cornell ILR School
  • Christine Pambianchi, senior vice president, human resources, Corning Incorporated.

The discussion will be followed by a Q&A.

“Practical Skills for Dealing with Harassment at Work – a Conversation for Students” will be held from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. in 217 Ives Hall.

Cornell-ILR alumni Diane Rosen and Mark Brossman, and Cornell Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer Mary Opperman will share advice and skills on:
•    practical strategies for how to communicate the problem.
•    getting answers to questions about your legal rights.
•    advocating for yourself.
Students can RSVP here:

Biographies of the speakers:

Kirsten GillibrandU.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand
U.S. senator for New York

One of Senator Kirsten Gillibrand’s top priorities in the United States Senate is to rebuild the American economy. She is fighting every day for more good-paying jobs, more products stamped with the words “Made in America,” and more new small businesses around New York State. She is determined to make sure that all New Yorkers have the opportunity to reach their potential, and she has consistently been a voice for the voiceless across New York and all around the country.

Throughout her time in the Senate, Senator Gillibrand has been a leader in some of the toughest fights in Washington. She led the effort to repeal the “Don't Ask Don't Tell” policy that banned gays from serving openly in the military; she wrote the STOCK Act, which made it illegal for members of Congress to financially benefit from inside information; and she won the long fight to provide permanent health care and compensation to the 9/11 first responders and community survivors who are sick with diseases caused by the toxins at Ground Zero. Senator Gillibrand brought Democrats and Republicans together to win these legislative victories.

Senator Gillibrand believes that accountability and transparency are essential to open and honest government. She was the first member of Congress ever to post her official daily meetings, earmarks, and personal financial disclosures online.  

Senator Gillibrand is leading the fight to reform the justice system for sexual assault survivors in the military and on college campuses. In 2013, as chair of the Armed Services subcommittee on personnel, she held the first Senate hearing on the issue of sexual assault in the military in almost a decade, and has built a bipartisan coalition of Senators in support of her bill, the Military Justice Improvement Act, which would remove sexual assault cases from the chain of command. She has also built a broad, bipartisan coalition for the Campus Accountability and Safety Act, which would finally hold colleges accountable for sexual assault on their campuses.

Senator Gillibrand is a champion for the economic empowerment of women and working families, and she has authored new legislation to rewrite the rules of the workplace so it can keep up with our changing workforce. She is fighting to pass bills that would raise the minimum wage, make quality child care more affordable, create universal pre-K, and ensure equal pay for equal work. . A magna cum laude graduate of Dartmouth College in 1988, Gillibrand went on to receive her law degree from the UCLA School of Law in 1991 and served as a law clerk on the Second Circuit Court of Appeals.

After working as an attorney in New York City for more than a decade, Senator Gillibrand served as Special Counsel to United States Secretary of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Andrew Cuomo during the Clinton Administration. She then worked as an attorney in Upstate New York before becoming a member of Congress.

Mark BrossmanMark E. Brossman
Partner, Schulte Roth & Zabel

Mark E. Brossman is a partner at Schulte Roth & Zabel and co-head of the firm's Employment & Employee Benefits Group. His areas of concentration include all aspects of employment discrimination, labor relations, ERISA and related litigation.

Mark received the Cornell University School of Industrial and Labor Relations’ prestigious Judge William B. Groat Alumni Award (for achievement in the field of industrial relations). Among other recognitions, Mark was the first recipient of the Lawyers Alliance for New York's Pro Bono Leadership Award.  He is listed in The Best Lawyers in America and New York Super Lawyers.  A frequent speaker, Mark has served as a lecturer in the Cornell University ILR School's Labor Relations Studies Program and as an instructor in the Columbia University Teacher's College.  Mark is active in several not-for-profit organizations and serves on the board of Bard College, New York University School of Law's Center for Labor & Employment Law, Montefiore Health System, Inc., the Cornell ILR School Advisory Board, and the Scheinman Institute of Conflict Resolution.  Mark earned both his LL.M. in Labor Law and his J.D. from New York University School of Law and his B.S. in Industrial and Labor Relations from Cornell University.

Alex ColvinAlexander Colvin
Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, Diversity, and Faculty Development, ILR School at Cornell University
Martin F. Scheinman Professor of Conflict Resolution, Labor Relations, Law, and History, ILR School at Cornell University

Alexander Colvin is Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, Diversity, and Faculty Development and the Martin F. Scheinman Professor of Conflict Resolution at the ILR School, Cornell University. He is an associate member of the Cornell Law Faculty. His research and teaching focuses on employment dispute resolution, with a particular emphasis on procedures in nonunion workplaces and the impact of the legal environment on organizations. His current research projects include empirical investigations of employment arbitration and a cross-national study of labor and employment law change in the Anglo-American countries. He has published articles in journals such as Industrial & Labor Relations Review, Industrial Relations, British Journal of Industrial Relations, Personnel Psychology, Relations Industrielles, the Ohio State Journal on Dispute Resolution, and the Cornell Journal of Law & Public Policy. He is also co-author (with Harry C. Katz and Thomas A. Kochan) of the textbook An Introduction to Collective Bargaining and Industrial Relations, 4th edition (Irwin-McGraw-Hill).

Prof. Colvin received his J.D. in 1992 from the University of Toronto and his Ph.D. in 1999 from Cornell University. He received the 2003 Outstanding Young Scholar Award from the Industrial Relations Research Association (IRRA) and the 2000 Best Dissertation Award from the IRRA for his dissertation entitled “Citizens and Citadels: Dispute Resolution and the Governance of Employment Relations”. Before joining the faculty of the ILR School in 2008, he taught at Penn State University from 1999-2008.

Kevin HallockKevin F. Hallock
Kenneth F. Kahn '69 Dean, Joseph R. Rich '80 Professor of Economics and Human Resource Studies, Cornell ILR School

Kevin is the Kenneth F. Kahn Dean and the Joseph R. Rich Professor of Economics and Human Resource Studies in the ILR School at Cornell University. Previous Cornell positions include the Chair of the Financial Policy Committee, the Donald C. Opatrny Chair of the University-Wide Department of Economics, and founding Director of the Institute for Compensation Studies. He has been at Cornell since 2005. He is also a Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research and on the Board of Directors of Society of Certified Professionals at WorldatWork.

In 2013, he was elected a Fellow of the National Academy of Human Resources. His current research is focused on labor markets, executive compensation, and the plan design and mix of employee compensation. His most recent book, Pay, was published by Cambridge University Press in 2012 and received the Princeton University Richard A. Lester Prize. Kevin’s work has covered a variety of topics including executive compensation, compensation design, discrimination, compensation of persons with disabilities, strikes, the gender gap, job loss, the link between labor and financial markets, the valuation of employee stock options, compensation of leaders of for-profits, nonprofits and labor unions, retirement, and quantile regression.

He has been published in a variety of outlets including the American Economic Review, the Journal of Corporate Finance, the Journal of Labor Economics, the Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, the Journal of Public Economics, the Industrial and Labor Relations Review, Industrial Relations, the Journal of Economic Perspectives, and Research in Personnel and Human Resources Management. He has co-edited four volumes on Labor Economics and two volumes on Executive Compensation. Funding for his research has come from various sources, including the American Compensation Association, the National Bureau of Economic Research, the U.S. Department of Labor, the U.S. Department of Education and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

He is the recipient of the Albert Reese Award for the Best Dissertation in Labor Economics from the Industrial Relations Section at Princeton University and the John Dunlop Outstanding Young Scholar Award from the Labor and Employment Relations Association. He previously served as Associate Editor of the Journal of Labor Economics and Economics Bulletin. He is currently on the editorial board of the Industrial and Labor Relations Review and is on the advisory boards of the Journal of People and Organizational Effectiveness and Compensation and Benefits Review. He earned a B.A. in Economics, Summa Cum Laude, from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst in1991, a M.A. in Economics from Princeton University in 1993 and a Ph.D. in Economics from Princeton University in 1995.

Lisa NishiiLisa Nishii
Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education, Cornell University
Associate Professor, Human Resource Studies, ILR School at Cornell University

Nishii is an expert on inclusion in organizations. Her research focuses on the confluence of organizational practices, leadership behaviors, and climate for inclusion on individual- and group-level outcomes. She is currently developing and testing the effectiveness of training interventions for leaders as well as for intact teams on how to cultivate workgroup inclusion. Nishii’s earlier research focused primarily on diversity in individual-level cognition and behavior as determined by national culture.

Nishii was recently appointed Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education at Cornell University. Her university responsibilities involve oversight of academic student success and academic diversity programs, living-learning initiatives, accreditation and assessment of student learning, and academic integrity. Nishii is also a co-chair of the President’s Task Force on Campus Climate.

Nishii actively publishes in top-tier journals, including the Academy of Management Review, Academy of Management Journal, Journal of Applied Psychology, Personnel Psychology, and Science, and serves on the editorial boards for AMR, AMJ, and JAP. She is currently the Chair of the Academy of Management’s Gender and Diversity in Organizations Division. Nishii also consults with multinational companies, primarily related to diversity and inclusion and organizational assessment. Nishii joined the faculty of the Human Resource Studies department at the ILR School, Cornell University, after receiving her Ph.D. and M.A. in Organizational Psychology from the University of Maryland, and a B.A in economics and psychology from Wellesley College.

Christine PambianchiChristine Pambianchi
Senior Vice President, Human Resources, Corning Incorporated

Christy is responsible for leading Corning’s Global Human Resource and Global Security functions since December 2010. She has led the HR function since January 2008 when she was named vice president, Human Resources. Pambianchi was named division vice president, Business Human Resources in July 2004. Prior to that appointment, Pambianchi was director, Business Human Resources, where she supported many of Corning’s Operating Divisions. Pambianchi started with Corning in 2000 as division human resource manager, Corning Optical Fiber, and went on to become director, Human Resources, Corning Optical Communications before moving into her recent assignments.

Prior to working at Corning Incorporated, Pambianchi worked at PepsiCo, Incorporated for 10 years. While at PepsiCo, Pambianchi held human resource manager positions in plant and regional distribution locations and worked as the organization capability manager for the field sales organizations. Her last position at PepsiCo was director, Human Resources for Information Technology. Pambianchi holds a bachelor’s degree from Cornell University’s School of Industrial and Labor Relations. Pambianchi serves as president of the board of directors at the Alternative School for Math and Science; is a member of the board of trustees of the Corning Foundation; and a member of the advisory board of the Cornell Center for Advanced Human Resource Studies (CAHRS) and the Dean’s Advisory Board for Cornell’s School of Industrial & Labor Relations.

Martha PollackPresident Martha E. Pollack
President of Cornell University

Martha E. Pollack is the fourteenth president of Cornell University and professor of computer science, information science, and linguistics. She took office on April 17, 2017.

She works to sustain and enhance Cornell’s academic distinction, to support a culture of educational “verve,” and to ensure that Cornell fulfills its civic responsibilities. Emphasizing the university’s obligation to promote humane and rational values, she supports investing in faculty and encourages openness to new approaches to teaching and learning. She also works to develop synergies among and within Cornell’s campuses, building on the vision of “One Cornell.” Among her highest priorities are standing up for knowledge, evidence, and reason; protecting freedom of expression; and creating a community that is truly diverse, inclusive, and egalitarian.

She was previously provost and executive vice president for academic affairs at the University of Michigan. As the university’s chief academic officer and chief budget officer, she was responsible for an academic enterprise that includes 19 schools and colleges. She encouraged innovation in teaching and learning, fostered excellence in research and scholarship, created a new multidisciplinary School for Environment and Sustainability, launched several multidisciplinary initiatives in areas ranging from combating poverty to advancing humanities scholarship, and expanded diversity and access.

Pollack is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Association for Computing Machinery, and the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence. She earned a bachelor’s degree in linguistics at Dartmouth College and an M.S. and Ph.D. in computer and information science at the University of Pennsylvania.