Thursday, June 17, 2021

DOJ's Special Counsel For Religious Discrimination Is Retiring

In an e-mail sent out yesterday, Eric Treene who has been the Justice Department's Special Counsel for Religious Discrimination since 2002 announced that he is retiring as of July 2.  Religious discrimination matters will apparently be handled by several individuals in DOJ's Civil Rights Division as part of their portfolios. Treene says:

The Civil Rights Division has consolidated its complaint interface for all types of claims.  Any civil rights complaint may be filed using the complaint portal here: This includes civil cases as well as hate crimes, whether against persons or property. As always, we encourage crime victims to call 911 or a local law enforcement non-emergency number before contacting the Department of Justice.   

Additionally, questions involving RLUIPA land matters use may be directed to Ryan Lee, RLUIPA coordinator at the Housing and Civil Enforcement Section, at Questions regarding RLUIPA institutionalized persons cases and issues should be directed to Tim Mygatt, and Deena Fox, in the Special Litigation Section.

Carrie Pagnucco, a career attorney with experience in RLUIPA litigation, is serving in the Office of the Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division, and has religion-related matters as part of her portfolio. She can be reached at She is the person to reach out to an all issues and matters other than RLUIPA (though she can help with RLUIPA too).

For policy related matters you also can reach out to Sheila Foran, Chief of the Policy Section at the Civil Rights Division, at

Treene says that he will stay involved in the religious liberty field through teaching and writing, and furnishes his permanent contact information as