Born in Brooklyn, Herbert Hill (1924–2004) studied at New York University and the New School for Social Research. He then worked as an organizer for the United Steelworkers before joining the NAACP staff in 1948. He was named labor secretary in 1951. In this capacity, he filed hundreds of lawsuits against labor unions and industries that refused integration or fair employment practices. He also used picket lines and mass demonstrations as weapons. Recognized as a major authority on race and labor, Hill testified frequently on Capitol Hill and served as a consultant for the United Nations and the State of Israel. He left the NAACP in 1977 to accept a joint professorship in Afro-American studies and industrial relations at the University of Wisconsin, from which he retired in 1997.