Last updated on: 1/31/2008 | Author:

Dorchen Leidholdt, JD Biography

Founding Board Member of the Coalition Against Trafficking in Women (CATW)
Con to the question "Should Prostitution Be Legal?"

“The sexual exploitation of women and children by local and global sex industries violates the human rights of all women and children whose bodies are reduced to sexual commodities in this brutal and dehumanizing marketplace. While experienced as pleasure by the prostitution consumers and as lucrative sources of income by sex industry entrepreneurs, prostitution, sex trafficking, and related practices are, in fact, forms of sexual violence that leave women and children physically and psychologically devastated. The global sex industry preys on this sexual, racial, and socioeconomic inequality, profits from it, and reinforces and exacerbates it. It turns the exploitation of members of groups at the bottom of gender-, race-, and socioeconomic-based hierarchies into the sexual entertainment of members of powerful groups. In short, it eroticizes inequality as it makes inequality immensely profitable.”

Presentation to UN Special Seminar on Trafficking, Prostitution and the Global Sex Industry, June 2, 1999

Involvement and Affiliations:
  • Founding Board Member and Former Co-Executive Director, Coalition Against Trafficking in Women (CATW), 1988-present
  • Director, Center for Battered Women’s Legal Services at Sanctuary for Families, New York City
  • Pro Bono Award, Legal Aid Society, 2005
  • “Women of Power and Influence” Award, National Organization for Women – New York City Chapter, 2002
  • “In the Trenches” Award, Lawyers Committee Against Domestic Violence, 2000
  • Outstanding Contributions in Public Interest Law, New York University School of Law Public Interest Law Foundation, 2000
  • Legal Services Award, New York City Bar Association, 1999
  • Human Rights Award, United Nations Capitol Association, 1994
  • Recognition Award, Korean-American Family Service Center
  • Lecturer, Columbia University School of Law
  • Former Leader, Women Against Pornography
  • Former Leader, Women Against Violence Against Women
  • Former Leader, Women’s Anti-Rape Coalition
  • Women of Distinction Award, New York City Chapter of the League of Women Voters
  • JD, New York University School of Law
  • MA, University of Virginia
  • None found