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Eric Holder is the first African-American Attorney General of the United States.
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During his four-year term, he created a domestic violence unit, a community prosecution project, and a program for restricting gun laws.
In 1997, Holder made history yet again when President Clinton nominated him to be the deputy attorney general. Holder was quickly confirmed several months later by a unanimous vote in the Senate. He was the first African-American elected to the position,
as well as the highest-ranking black person in law enforcement in the history of the United States at that time.
As deputy attorney general, Holder developed and issued the "Holder Memorandum," which spelled out the guidelines for the criminal prosecution of corporations. He also developed rules for the regulation of health care, and assembled a task force that determined how to investigate criminal investigations of high-ranking federal employees.
At the president's request, Holder created the organization, Lawyers for One America. The group was designed to bring greater diversity to the law profession, and increase pro bono work among the nation's lawyers. Holder also briefly served under President Bush as Acting Attorney General, during the pending confirmation of Attorney General John Ashcroft.
After serving in this position for four years, Holder joined the private sector to work at the law firm, Covington and Burling LLC, in 2001. He continues to work at the firm, representing clients such as the National Football League during its investigation of quarterback Michael Vick, and the negotiation of an agreement with the Justice Department for Chiquita Brands International.
In addition to his normal workload, Holder serves on a number of philanthropic boards, including the Columbia University board, the Save the Children Foundation, and Concerned Black Men, a group that seeks to help troubled youth in D.C. He has also been nationally recognized for his work in the law profession; he was featured in the 2007 edition of The Best Lawyers in America, and in 2008 he was named by The National Law Journal as one of "The Most 50 Influential Minority Lawyers in America" as well as by Legal Times for being one of the "Greatest Washington Lawyers of the Past 30 Years."
In late 2007, Holder joined Senator Barack Obama's presidential campaign as a senior legal advisor, and later served as one of three members on Obama's vice-presidential selection committee. Holder is currently the U.S. Attorney General, making him the first African-American Attorney General in history.
He is married to obstetrician Sharon Malone. The couple has three children: Maya, Brooke and Eric. They currently reside in Washington, D.C.
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