Debbie Berkowitz

Practitioner Fellow, Kalmanovitz Initiative for Labor and the Working Poor, Georgetown University

Debbie Berkowitz is a worker safety and health policy expert and advocate. She was the Worker Safety and Health Program Director at the National Employment Law Project for six years where she worked with national and state partners to develop successful policies and campaigns that improved conditions for vulnerable, low-wage workers in dangerous industries, including temporary workers and those in the meat, poultry, and food industry. Most recently she helped lead campaigns for stronger state and federal standards to protect workers from COVID-19. She is the author of widely cited reports and research on model policies to improve worker safety and workers’ compensation systems. Her past positions include serving as chief of staff and then the senior policy advisor for the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (2009-2015). Debbie was also the health and safety director of the United Food and Commercial Workers Union and the health and safety director of the Food and Allied Service Trades Department of the AFL-CIO. She has testified before Congressional and state legislative committee hearings and her writing has been published in the Washington Post, Bloomberg BNA, Workers’ Compensation, Quartz, the Hill, and more. Debbie is regularly quoted by major news outlets for her expertise on worker safety and health. Debbie is the recipient of numerous awards, including the American Public Health Association’s Alice Hamilton Award.