WASHINGTON, D.C.— Today, Commissioner Christy A. McCormick began her year-long term as Chairwoman of the U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC), a position she has previously held twice before during her time at the EAC. Chairwoman McCormick will serve alongside Commissioner Benjamin Hovland, who also begins his year-long term as Vice Chair of the agency. They both continue to serve alongside EAC Commissioners Donald Palmer and Thomas Hicks.
“I am excited to once again serve as Chair of the EAC, an agency that plays such a critical role in the administration of our nation’s elections. As officials well know, there is no ‘off-year’ in elections. 2023 will be an important time for the EAC’s work to help officials as they administer elections throughout this year and prepare for 2024. The presidential primaries are less than a year away, and 2023 will be a critical time to make sure those elections run smoothly,” said Chairwoman McCormick. “As I take on the role of Chairwoman, I look forward to working alongside my fellow Commissioners as we continue to support the tireless and dedicated election officials across the country and help all eligible voters participate in the process.”
Chairwoman McCormick identified the following areas she would like to build on as priorities for the agency in the coming year, including:
- Producing work to support election administrators as they prepare for upcoming elections. This includes efforts to enhance election security, sharing best election practices, and supporting other key areas of election administration.
- Increasing EAC’s initiatives regarding accessibility for voters with disabilities. This includes increased resources and staff dedicated to accessibility.
- Working with election officials and stakeholders to utilize the data from the 2022 Election Administration and Voting Survey (EAVS) that will be released this summer.
- Providing states with guidance to invest HAVA funding into mission critical purchases such as new election equipment to replace the nation’s aging election systems.
Chairwoman McCormick assumes the Chairwoman role in place of outgoing Chairman Thomas Hicks, whose term spanned February 2022 through February 2023.
“Over the last year, the EAC has made significant progress fulfilling its mission to improve the administration of federal elections. In this time, the EAC continued the administration of $955 million in HAVA security grants to 50 states, the territories, and the District of Columbia, as well as $400 million in CARES Act grants. 2022 also marked the 20th anniversary of the Help America Vote Act, a milestone the EAC commemorated with the launch of Help America Vote Day and the celebration of the second National Poll Worker Recruitment Day. During this time, the agency also hired Steven Frid as the new Executive Director and saw an increase of 37.8% in its operating budget for FY 2023, expanding the EAC’s capacity to serve stakeholders,” said outgoing Chairman Thomas Hicks. “Thanks to the dedication of state and local election officials, as well as the entire EAC staff, elections in 2022 once again ran well. I look forward to continuing this work alongside my fellow Commissioners to improve election administration and strengthen the support we provide to those who are on the ground managing our elections.”
About Chairwoman McCormick
Christy McCormick was nominated by President Barack H. Obama and confirmed by unanimous consent of the United States Senate on December 16, 2014, to serve on the U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC). During her time at the EAC, including her two previous terms as Chair, she led the Commission’s restructuring after several years without Commissioners, created the first election data summit, and the first election accessibility summit focused on language. She has met with voters and legislators across the country and observed in elections in nearly all the states.
From 2006 until her appointment with the EAC, Ms. McCormick served as a senior trial attorney prosecuting discrimination violations of federal voting statutes in the Voting Section of the Civil Rights Division at the U.S. Department of Justice (USDOJ). Ms. McCormick was detailed by the Deputy Attorney General to be senior attorney advisor and acting deputy rule of law coordinator in the Office of the Rule of Law Coordinator at the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, Iraq, from 2009 to 2010, where she worked as the U.S. elections expert overseeing the Iraq national elections (including an extensive election recount), as well as on numerous U.S. and coalition Rule of Law efforts.
Prior to joining the USDOJ, Ms. McCormick served as a Judicial Clerk to the Honorable Elizabeth A. McClanahan in the Court of Appeals of Virginia from 2003 to 2006. Ms. McCormick was an Assistant Attorney General and Assistant to the Solicitor General in the Office of the Attorney General of Virginia from 2001 to 2003. She was a member of the U.S. Supreme Court legal teams for Black v. Virginia (defending the Commonwealth’s criminal statute against cross-burning) and Hicks v. Virginia (defending a 1st Amendment challenge to a state trespassing policy), as well as in cases on appeal to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. She was a Judicial Law Clerk in Virginia’s Seventh Judicial Circuit Court from 1999 to 2001.
Ms. McCormick received her B.A. from the University of Buffalo, a J.D. with honors from the George Mason University School of Law (now Antonin Scalia Law School), and also attended the William & Mary School of Law.
EAC Contact: Kristen Muthig