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Supreme Court Review (14th Annual): October 2011 Term


Speaker(s): Dean Erwin Chemerinsky, Joan Biskupic, Professor Leon Friedman, Professor Marci A. Hamilton, Professor Michael C. Dorf, Professor Sherry F. Colb, Professor Theodore M. Shaw
Recorded on: Aug. 9, 2012
PLI Program #: 35536

Erwin Chemerinsky became the 13th Dean of Berkeley Law on July 1, 2017, when he joined the faculty as the Jesse H. Choper Distinguished Professor of Law.

Prior to assuming this position, from 2008-2017, he was the founding Dean and Distinguished Professor of Law, and Raymond Pryke Professor of First Amendment Law, at University of California, Irvine School of Law, with a joint appointment in Political Science.  Before that he was the Alston and Bird Professor of Law and Political Science at Duke University from 2004-2008, and from 1983-2004 was a professor at the University of Southern California Law School, including as the Sydney M. Irmas Professor of Public Interest Law, Legal Ethics, and Political Science. He also has taught at DePaul College of Law and UCLA Law School.  He teaches Constitutional Law, First Amendment Law, Federal Courts, Criminal Procedure, and Appellate Litigation.

He is the author of ten books, including The Case Against the Supreme Court, published by Viking in 2014, and two books published by Yale University Press in 2017, Closing the Courthouse Doors: How Your Constitutional Rights Became Unenforceable and Free Speech on Campus (with Howard Gillman). He also is the author of more than 200 law review articles. He writes a weekly column for the Sacramento Bee, monthly columns for the ABA Journal and the Daily Journal, and frequent op-eds in newspapers across the country. He frequently argues appellate cases, including in the United States Supreme Court. 

In 2016, he was named a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.  In January 2017, National Jurist magazine again named Dean Chemerinsky as the most influential person in legal education in the United States.

Education

B.S., Northwestern University (1975)

J.D., Harvard Law School (1978)


Joan Biskupic, a full-time CNN legal analyst, has covered the Supreme Court for twenty-five years and is the author of several books on the judiciary.

Before joining CNN in 2017, Biskupic spent a year as a visiting professor at the University of California, Irvine, law school. She previously was an editor-in-charge for Legal Affairs at Reuters and, before that position, the Supreme Court correspondent for the Washington Post and for USA Today.

Her books include, Breaking In: The Rise of Sonia Sotomayor and the Politics of Justice (2014), American Original: The Life and Constitution of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia (2009) and Sandra Day O'Connor (2005). She currently is working on a biography of Chief Justice John Roberts.

A graduate of Georgetown University law school, Biskupic was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in explanatory journalism in 2015.


Leon Friedman is the Joseph Kushner Special Professor of Civil Liberties Law professor at Hofstra Law School, teaching constitutional law and copyright. He is also a practicing lawyer, specializing in civil rights, First Amendment and intellectual property. He is a graduate of Harvard College and of the Harvard Law School. He served for a time a staff attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union.

He has written or edited over a dozen books and has published over 100 articles in various law journals, newspapers and magazines. Among his works are The Justices of the United States Supreme Court: Their Lives and Major Decisions, 4th edition (Facts on File, 2013). The original edition of this work won the Scribes Award in 1970 as the best book on a legal subject published that year. Other books include The Supreme Court Confronts Abortion,  Southern Justice, The Civil Rights Reader, Brown v. Board of Education, Obscenity, The Wise Minority,  Unquestioning Obedience to the President (with Burt Neuborne) and Disorder in the Court (with Norman Dorsen)

He has written or worked on briefs for the United States Supreme Court in many important cases dealing with the First Amendment (Simon & Schuster v. Members of the New York State Crime Victims Board, Gentile v. State Bar of Nevada, Grove Press v. Maryland Board of Censors, Carroll v. Princess Anne County) copyright (Harper & Row, Publishers, Inc. v. Nation Enterprises, Campbell v. Acuff-Rose Music ) civil rights, employment discrimination, Criminal Procedure, and abuse of government power.

He also practices in the area of copyright, employment discrimination and civil rights. He has represented a number of publishers, including Farrar, Straus & Giroux, Arcade Publishers, Chelsea House Publishers, as well as many authors including I. B. Singer, Susan Sontag, John McPhee, Stephen Spender, Hunter Thompson, Oscar Hijuelos, as well as the estates of Edith Wharton, T.S. Eliot. C.S. Forester and Daphne du Murier. Among his other clients have been James Brown, the Isley Brothers and Kathleen Turner. He is the general counsel for PEN American Center and is a former member of the Board of Directors of the New York Civil Liberties Union.


MARCI A. HAMILTON is one of the United States’ leading church/state scholars and is a Senior Fellow in the Program for Research on Religion and Urban Civil Society at the University of Pennsylvania.  She is also the Academic Director and Chairman of the Board of CHILD USA, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit dedicated to preventing and deterring child abuse and neglect.  She holds the Paul R. Verkuil Chair in Public Law, Emeritus, at the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, Yeshiva University.

She was also the Academic Curator for the National Constitution Center’s 2015 Religious Liberty Exhibit and a contributor on the Establishment Clause to the National Constitution Center’s Interactive Constitution project.

Hamilton clerked for United States Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor and Judge Edward R. Becker of the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit.  She successfully challenged the constitutionality of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (“RFRA”) at the Supreme Court in Boerne v. Flores, 521 U.S. 507 (1997), and is considered the foremost national scholar and advocate for the victims of extreme religious liberty, including the RFRAs and RLUIPA.   She also hosts www.RFRAperils.com, which tracks and analyzes free exercise statutes in all 50 states and the federal government.

Hamilton is the author of God vs. the Gavel: The Perils of Extreme Religious Liberty (Cambridge University Press 2014), which was nominated for a 2015 Pulitzer Prize; Justice Denied: What America Must Do to Protect Its Children (Cambridge University Press 2008); God vs. the Gavel: Religion and the Rule of Law (Cambridge University Press 2005), which received Foreword Magazine’s Political Science Book of the Year, Silver Medal; and the co-editor of Fundamentalism, Politics and the Law (Palgrave Macmillan with Mark Rozell 2011); and numerous scholarly articles. She is also a bi-monthly columnist for www.justia.com/verdict.  Her blog with Professor Leslie Griffin on religious liberty, women’s rights, and children’s rights can be found at http://www.hamilton-Griffin.com.   Her textbook, Children and the Law, co-authored with Martin Gardner, will be published 2016-17 by Carolina Academic Press, formerly Lexis/Nexis.

As a result of her research on clergy sex abuse, Hamilton is a tireless advocate for access to justice for child sex abuse victims and a national leader in the movement to eliminate statutes of limitations in child sex abuse cases.  She has represented numerous survivors across the United States and submitted testimony and advised legislators in every state where significant reform has occurred and hosts www.sol-reform.com, which tracks and provides analysis about the SOL movement in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and around the globe.  She has filed countless pro bono amicus briefs for the protection of children at the United States Supreme Court and in other courts.

Hamilton has been honored with the 2016 Voice Today, Voice of Gratitude Award; the 2015 Religious Liberty Award, American Humanist Association; the  2014 Freethought Heroine Award; the National Crime Victim Bar Association’s Frank Carrington Champion of Civil Justice Award, 2012; the E. Nathaniel Gates Award for outstanding public advocacy and scholarship, 2008; and selected as a Pennsylvania Woman of the Year Award, 2012, among others.   She is also frequently quoted in the national media on RFRA, RLUIPA, First Amendment, clergy sex abuse, and statute of limitations issues.

Professor Hamilton is a graduate of Vanderbilt University, B.A., summa cum laude; Pennsylvania State University, M.A. (English, fiction writing, High Honors); M.A. (Philosophy); and the University of Pennsylvania School of Law, J.D., magna cum laude, where she served as Editor-in-Chief of the University of Pennsylvania Law Review.   She is a member of Phi Beta Kappa and Order of the Coif.


Theodore M. Shaw is the Julius L. Chambers Distinguished Professor of Law and Director of the Center for Civil Rights at the University of North Carolina School of Law at Chapel Hill. Professor Shaw teaches Civil Procedure and Advanced Constitutional Law/Fourteenth Amendment. Before joining the faculty of UNC Law School, from 2008-2014 Professor Shaw taught at Columbia University Law School, where he was Professor of Professional Practice. During that time he was also “Of Counsel” to the law firm of Norton Rose Fulbright (formerly Fulbright & Jaworski, LLP). His practice involved civil litigation and representation of institutional clients on matters concerning diversity and civil rights.

Professor Shaw was the fifth Director-Counsel and President of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc., for which he worked in various capacities over the span of twenty-six years. He has litigated education, employment, voting rights, housing, police misconduct, capital punishment and other civil rights cases in trial and appellate courts, and in the United States Supreme Court. From 1982 until 1987, he litigated education, housing, and capital punishment cases and directed LDF’s education litigation docket. In 1987, under the direction of LDF's third Director-Counsel, Julius Chambers, Mr. Shaw relocated to Los Angeles to establish LDF’s Western Regional Office. In 1990, Mr. Shaw left LDF to join the faculty of the University of Michigan Law School, where he taught Constitutional Law, Civil Procedure and Civil Rights. While at Michigan, he played a key role in initiating a review of the law school’s admissions practices and policies, and served on the faculty committee that promulgated the admissions program that was upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court in 2003 in Grutter v. Bollinger.

In 1993, Mr. Shaw returned to LDF as Associate Director-Counsel, and in 2004, he became LDF’s fifth Director-Counsel. Mr. Shaw’s legal career began as a Trial Attorney in the Honors Program of the United States Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division in Washington, D.C., where he worked from 1979 until 1982.

Mr. Shaw has testified on numerous occasions before Congress and before state and local legislatures. His human rights work has taken him to Africa, Asia, Europe, and South America. In addition to teaching at Columbia and at Michigan Law School, Professor Shaw held the 1997-1998 Haywood Burns Chair at CUNY School of Law at Queens College and the 2003 Phyllis Beck Chair at Temple Law School. He was a visiting scholar at the Constitution Center in Philadelphia in 2008-2009. He is a member of the faculty of the Practicing Law Institute (PLI).

Mr. Shaw served on the Obama Transition Team after the 2008 presidential election, as team leader for the Civil Rights Division of the Justice Department.


Michael C. Dorf is the Robert S. Stevens Professor of Law at Cornell University.  He has written over eighty law review articles and essays on constitutional law and related subjects. Dorf is the co-author (with Laurence Tribe) of On Reading the Constitution (Harvard University Press, 1991), the co-author (with Trevor Morrison) of The Oxford Introductions to U.S. Law: Constitutional Law (Oxford University Press, 2010), the editor of Constitutional Law Stories (Foundation Press 2004, second edition 2009), the author of No Litmus Test: Law Versus Politics in the 21st Century (Rowman & Littlefield, 2006), the co-author (with Sherry Colb) of Beating Hearts: Abortion and Animal Rights (Columbia University Press, 2016), and a co-editor of the casebook and related materials Constitutional Law (West, 2015 and yearly updates). Dorf holds an A.B. and a J.D. from Harvard University.  He served as a law clerk for Judge Stephen Reinhardt of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and then for Justice Anthony M. Kennedy of the Supreme Court of the United States, and maintains an active pro bono practice.  Before joining the Cornell faculty, Dorf taught at Rutgers-Camden Law School for three years and at Columbia Law School for thirteen years. His popular writing appears regularly in Newsweek, Verdict, and on his blog, Dorf on Law.


Sherry F. Colb is the C.S. Wong Professor of Law at Cornell Law School. She earned an A.B. from Columbia College (Valedictorian) and a J.D. from Harvard Law School (magna cum laude).  After graduation, Colb clerked for Judge Wilfred Feinberg of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit and for Associate Justice Harry A. Blackmun of the United States Supreme Court. She was a member of the Rutgers University School of Law faculty in Newark when she joined the Cornell faculty in 2008 and has held the position of Visiting Professor at the University of Pennsylvania School of Law and Columbia Law School. Her research and teaching interests center on issues of constitutional criminal procedure (especially the Fourth Amendment), animal rights, sexual equality, and evidence. Colb’s scholarship has appeared in the Stanford Law Review, the New York University Law Review, the Columbia Law Review, the Michigan Law Review, and elsewhere. She has published a book about the modern challenges of sex equality, When Sex Counts: Making Babies and Making Law (Rowman & Littlefield 2007), and she authored a book about veganism and animal rights, “Mind If I Order the Cheeseburger?” and Other Questions People Ask Vegans (Lantern 2013).  Most recently, she has co-authored a book about animal rights and abortion, Beating Hearts:  Abortion and Animal Rights (Columbia University Press 2016).  She composes a bi-weekly column on Verdict.Justia.com as well as regular posts on the blog, Dorf on Law. She is admitted to the New York Bar and the U.S. Supreme Court Bar.