Office of Public Affairs

Sept. 24, 2018 — Former Clinton advisor Maria Echaveste to address labor issues in the “gig economy” at USM on Sept. 27



Press Contacts:
Danielle Vayenas, USM Director of Communications, 207-780-4150 / 207-239-5715 (cell)

Daniel Hartill, USM Communications and Media Relations Specialist, 207-780-4744 / 207-333-9910 (cell)

USM Muskie School of Public Service Contact:
Firooza Pavri, Director, Muskie School of Public Service, 207-780-5941

*High res image here.

**Maria Echaveste will potentially be available between 2 - 4 p.m. on 9/27

Former Clinton advisor Maria Echaveste to address labor issues in the “gig economy” at USM on Sept. 27

WHAT: The University of Southern Maine Muskie School of Public Service and the Frances Perkins Center are co-hosting former presidential advisor Maria Echaveste at the fifth annual Betta Ehrenfeld Public Policy Forum at USM. Echaveste, President Clinton’s former Deputy Chief of Staff, will present a talk: “The Fair Labor Standards Act: In the New Economy, How Do We Honor and Fulfill Its Original Purpose?”

WHEN: Thursday, September 27, reception at 5:00 p.m., public talk at 5:30 p.m.

WHERE: Room 102 Wishcamper Center (34 Bedford St.), on the USM Portland Campus

WHO: The event is free and open to the public, online registration is required.

Echaveste’s talk will focus on the Fair Labor Standards Act, signed into law 80 years ago, and what place it has in today’s new economy. Members of the Frances Perkins Center board will present Echaveste with the 2018 Frances Perkins Center Steadfast Award.

“We’re thrilled to welcome Maria Echaveste to Maine, and to host this important conversation about public policy,” said Michael Chaney, executive director of the Perkins Center. “This is exactly the kind of substantive discussion Frances Perkins herself would have loved.”

Echaveste, the daughter of Mexican immigrants, worked in Bill Clinton’s administration, first as an official in the Department of Labor, and later as White House Deputy Chief of Staff. She remains one of only a handful of Latinas ever to work as a high-ranking presidential advisor.

Betta Ehrenfeld Public Policy Forum
The Betta Ehrenfeld Public Policy Forum is an annual event hosted by the Frances Perkins Center to highlight the principles that guided the life and work of Frances Perkins and to apply those principles to today’s economic and social problems. The event is named in honor of Betta Ehrenfeld, whose generosity has enabled the Center to grow and thrive in its formative years.




Situated in Maine’s economic and cultural center, the University of Southern Maine (USM) is a public university with 8,000 undergraduate and graduate students taking courses online and at campuses in Portland, Gorham and Lewiston-Auburn. Known for its academic excellence, student focus and engagement with the community, USM provides students with hands-on experience that complements classroom learning and leads to employment opportunities in one of the nation’s most desirable places to live.