Joel Bolstein Appointed Chair of PA Human Relations Commission

November 8, 2018 – Press Releases

Fox Rothschild LLP is pleased to announce that Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf has appointed M. Joel Bolstein as chair of the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission, which develops state policy and regulations and adjudicates claims alleging discrimination in housing, employment, educational opportunities and public accommodation.  Bolstein has served as a PHRC Commissioner since 1999, having been first appointed by Governor Tom Ridge, and subsequently reappointed by Governors Rendell and Wolf to successive five-year terms.  He has been serving as PHRC’s Interim Chairperson since 2016.

“I am so grateful to Governor Wolf for the opportunity to continue serving in a leadership role at PHRC.  Given the recent senseless murders of 11 innocent people at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, I see the PHRC’s work as more important than ever in fighting against discrimination, hatred and intolerance” said Bolstein. 

He added, “I have dedicated nearly 20 years of my life to PHRC’s mission, and I am so looking forward to continue working alongside the many dedicated professional staff members in its offices in Philadelphia, Harrisburg and Pittsburgh.  I understand the importance of that work and its real impact on the people living, working and going to school in Pennsylvania.” 

Bolstein said that one policy change made during his tenure as Interim Chairperson of which he is very proud was PHRC’s adoption of a policy guidance allowing members of Pennsylvania’s LGBTQ community to file complaints with the Commission as sex-based discrimination.  PHRC received more than 8,000 public comments on that policy guidance when it was initially proposed, and it was finalized in July earlier this year. 

Bolstein is a partner in Warrington, Bucks County office of Fox Rothschild and works on the environmental aspects of real estate and corporate transactions. He serves on the firm’s Diversity Committee and is a member of its LGBTQ Subcommittee.  Before Fox Rothschild, Bolstein served as the Deputy Secretary at the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection. 

He earned his J.D. and B.A. from George Washington University.