Do No Harm v. William Lee

Case Information

Case Name
Do No Harm v. William Lee
Case Status

Government regulatory boards are commonplace for countless professions throughout the country. Tennessee podiatrists are no exception, falling under the purview of the state Board of Podiatric Medical Examiners. Another requirement of board membership, however, has nothing to do with podiatry and everything to do with stifling equality before the law; one board member must also be a racial minority. 

Interested Tennesseans include a member of Do No Harm, a nonprofit organization of over 6,000 physicians, healthcare professionals, medical students, patients, and policymakers committed to ensuring equality in healthcare. Do No Harm’s podiatrist member would like to be considered for the open board seat, but he would be excluded because of his race. 

Represented by PLF at no charge, Do No Harm is fighting back. Its federal lawsuit challenges the Tennessee podiatry board’s race-based membership quota as violating the Constitution’s equal protection guarantee. Its victory would ensure that all candidates can compete equally for any city advisory board, regardless of race.