A University of Kansas law student with a passion for public interest law will soon head up an organization aimed at reducing the kind of violence that resulted in the death of former KU Law student and women’s rights advocate Jana Mackey.
Eric Sader will assume his duties as executive director of Jana’s Campaign in June in Hays, Kan.
“We believe it is so appropriate that Jana’s Campaign’s new executive director is a KU law school graduate,” said Christie Brungardt, whose daughter, Jana Mackey, had just completed her first year of law school at KU when she was slain by an ex-boyfriend in 2008. Since her death, family and friends created Jana’s Campaign Inc. with the single mission of reducing domestic and dating violence.
Sader, of Lawrence, will graduate from the University of Kansas this May with both a law degree and a master’s in social work. His work background includes legal, research and administrative experience with the University of Kansas Medical Center and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in Kansas City; the University of Kansas and Douglas County Sheriff’s Office in Lawrence; and the American Federation of Government Employees (AFL-CIO) in Washington, D.C.
“Jana’s Campaign is the perfect organization where justice meets action in the promotion of healthy relationships free from abuse and coercion,” Sader said. “Gender-based violence is a women’s issue, but it is also a men’s issue and a human issue. I look forward to serving an operation named after an activist who understood that oppression of one is the oppression of all. I am blessed to enter the Campaign knowing its focus on impact, and I am eager to apply my own talents and resources to the challenges that lie ahead.”
Sader graduated from McPherson College (Kansas) with degrees in history, communications, and philosophy and religion, and also served as student body president. He has returned to McPherson for several summers on KU law school public interest fellowships to volunteer for the Ulster Project, which addresses religious sectarian divide among Northern Irish youth. Last summer, he received a prestigious Peggy Browning Fellowship and spent 10 weeks in Washington, D.C., advocating for workers’ rights.
At KU, Sader has served as chief justice of the university’s Student Court of Appeals and an audio-reader for the visually impaired. He was named among the 2011 KU Men of Merit.
“We are extremely excited to add Eric to our staff. He brings a wealth of knowledge and key experience to this position,” said Curt Brungardt, Jana’s stepfather and Jana’s Campaign board president. “Most importantly, however, Eric has the passion and the heart for making a real difference on the critical issue of gender-based violence.”
For more information on Jana's Campaign, visit http://www.janascampaign.org/.