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Nicole Rutherford, J.D.

Nicole Rutherford is the Title IX Coordinator and District Director of the Office of Civil Rights Compliance for Miami-Dade County Public Schools (M-DCPS), the nation’s fourth-largest school district. She has extensive experience in civil rights and equal employment opportunity compliance in the K-12 space. Her key areas of expertise include Title IX, employment discrimination, investigations, and policy development. Nicole was instrumental in developing the district’s current Title IX grievance process, prevention, and training program.

In her current capacity, she manages and directs the operations of the CRC Office, serving 392 schools, over 40,000 employees, and more than 345,000 students. Nicole and her team are dedicated to:

  • providing technical assistance to M-DCPS personnel, focusing on compliance with various federal, state, and local laws and regulations, as well as School Board Policies regarding equal opportunity, and equal access to employment and educational services and programs;
  • investigating complaints and charges of discrimination and harassment, including sexual harassment, filed by employees, students and their parents, applicants, and vendors;
  • responding to charges of discrimination and harassment made against the district filed with federal or state enforcement agencies such as the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), Office for Civil Rights (OCR), Department of Labor (DOL), or Florida Commission on Human Relations (FCHR); and
  • providing training to District employees, students, and community stakeholders regarding equal opportunity and equal access to employment and educational services and programs.

Before working with M-DCPS, Nicole served as a fierce legal advocate on behalf of underrepresented populations. After law school, she became a Program Attorney with the Florida Guardian ad Litem Program where she worked representing the best interests of abused, abandoned, and neglected children in juvenile court. She later served as a Supervising Attorney for the Guardian ad Litem Program in Miami-Dade and Broward counties, overseeing the legal teams for each program.

Nicole was born and raised in Miami, Florida, and is herself, a product of M-DCPS and is married and has three children. She enjoys traveling and attending sporting events, movies, and music. 

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