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Anita Hill to front Hollywood commission on sexual misconduct

Anita Hill testifying before the Senate Judiciary Committee during the Clarence Thomas Supreme Court confirmation hearings in Washington. (American Film Foundation via The New York Times)

In an effort to contend with the glaring problem of sexual harassment and assault in Hollywood, a group of prominent individuals have established a commission to deal with the entertainment industry’s toxic culture of misogyny and abuse. As The New York Times reports, the commission will have a fitting figurehead at its helm: Anita Hill.

Hill famously forced the nation to reckon with workplace harassment when she accused Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas of sexual misconduct in 1991. She will now chair the Commission on Sexual Harassment and Advancing Equality in the Workplace, which seeks to implement “a comprehensive strategy to address the complex and inter-related causes of the problems of parity and power,” said LucasFilm President Kathleen Kennedy, who helped establish the commission, according to Variety.

Anita Hill at Brandeis University in Waltham, Mass., March 5, 2014. (Tony Cenicola/The New York Times)

Among the other power-players behind the initiative are Nike Foundation founder and co-chair Maria Eitel, attorney Nina Shaw and venture capitalist Freada Kapor Klein. Many top entertainment executives attended a meeting convened by the commission of Friday, including Disney CEO Bob Iger, Academy Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences CEO Dawn Hudson and Netflix chief content officer Ted Sarandos.

In a statement, Hill said that she “is proud to be leading this newly-formed commission on a long overdue journey to adopt best practices and to create institutional change that fosters a culture of respect and human dignity throughout the industry.”

Read the full story at The New York Times and Variety.


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