By Roadtrip Nation

Seth Harris


My road in life has been direct.
I come from a family that was very involved in social justice, so I grew up having a passion for it as well.
I was also very interested in politics, and started volunteering in political campaigns in my community when I was just 10 years old.
As a kid, I decided I wanted to become a lawyer after being inspired by the stories of Clarence Darrow, a lawyer who became famous for representing progressive causes.
In college, I studied industrial and labor relations, and became much more engaged in working class labor and social justice issues.
After graduating, I spent five years working in the labor movement before going back to school for a law degree.
I worked as a law professor for about a decade at New York Law School in lower Manhattan.
I served for almost five years as the U.S. Deputy Secretary of Labor under President Obama—including six months as the acting Secretary of Labor.
I now work as an attorney, business advisor, and visiting professor at Cornell University, where I teach leadership and public policy.
Keep following my journey


Attorney & 11th United States Deputy Secretary of Labor

I'm an attorney, business advisor, visiting professor, and former U.S. Deputy Secretary of Labor.

Career Roadmap

My work combines:
My work combines:
Upholding a Cause and Belief

Advice for Getting Started

Here's the first step for college students

The days of going to college and then working the same job for the next 40 years are largely gone. If you have the economic ability to choose to do something you're passionate about after college, do that for a while and see how it goes. Remember that it doesn't have to be what you do for the rest of your life. Find mentors who have been in that field or industry to counsel you. Take their advice if it makes sense to you. The most important thing is that it needs to feel authentic to you.


The Noise I Shed

From Society in General:

"Join a big law firm because that's where the money is."

Challenges I Overcame

Mental Health Issues