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Ramona E. Romero to receive Rambo Award


The Women’s Law Caucus of Penn State University’s Dickinson School of Law will recognize Ramona E. Romero, Esq. as the nineteenth recipient of the Judge Sylvia H. Rambo Award during a ceremony on February 28, 2013, at Lewis Katz Hall, Carlisle, Pennsylvania. Romero, general counsel of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), will receive the Rambo Award in recognition of her exemplary contributions to the legal profession and to society as a whole.

The Rambo Award was introduced in 1993 by the Women’s Law Caucus to honor its first recipient, the Honorable Sylvia H. Rambo, a 1962 graduate of the Law School and the first woman to serve as chief judge of the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania, where she continues to serve.

"Ms. Romero's hard work and dedication to her field serve as an inspiration for members of the Women's Law Caucus," said Amanda Boylan '13, president of the Women's Law Caucus. "The selection committee felt strongly that she best represented the spirit of the Rambo Award."

As the chief legal officer of the USDA, Romero is the principal legal advisor to Secretary Tom Vilsack and other department officials. She was nominated by President Barack Obama in June 2010 and confirmed unanimously by the U.S. Senate in December of that year. Romero oversees the work of about 300 legal professionals who provide legal advice and support to all components of the department.

Before joining the administration, Romero was a corporate counsel at DuPont, where she provided legal oversight for the acquisition of transportation, distribution, supply-chain management, travel and energy resources, and managed related strategic litigation. While at DuPont, Romero led various initiatives aimed at promoting diversity in the legal profession and was a frequent public speaker on that subject. Romero began her legal career as a litigator at Crowell & Moring LLP in Washington, D.C., where her practice focused on a broad range of commercial, government contract, and white collar matters.

Romero has served on multiple boards and been affiliated with several professional organizations, including the American Constitution Society for Law and Policy, both the House of Delegates and the Presidential Commission on Diversity of the American Bar Association, the Advisory Committee of The O'Connor Judicial Selection Initiative at the University of Denver, The Justice at Stake Campaign, the American Red Cross in the Delmarva Peninsula, and Delaware Futures. From 2008-2009, she was the national president of the Hispanic National Bar Association, and was a founding member and officer of the Dominican American National Roundtable. Romero is the recipient of many honors, including the Lucero ("guiding star") Award from Latino Justice PRLDEF (formerly known as the Puerto Rican Legal Defense Fund) and Hispanic Business Magazine's recognition in 2010 and 2007 as one of the 100 most influential Hispanics in the United States.

Romero holds a B.A. from Barnard College and a J.D. from Harvard Law School.

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