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Ajay K. Mehrotra

Ajay K. Mehrotra is the Executive Director of the American Bar Foundation. He is also a Research Professor at the ABF, a Professor of Law at Northwestern University’s Pritzker School of Law, and an Affiliated Professor of History at Northwestern University.

Mehrotra's scholarship and teaching focus on legal history and tax law.  More generally, his research explores law and political economy in historical and comparative perspective, with a particular focus on tax law and policy.  He is the author of Making the Modern American Fiscal State: Law, Politics and the Rise of Progressive Taxation, 1877 1929 (Cambridge University Press, 2013), which received the 2014 Best Book Award from the Society for U.S. Intellectual History.  He is the co-editor (with Isaac William Martin and Monica Prasad) of The New Fiscal Sociology: Taxation in Comparative and Historical Perspective (Cambridge University Press, 2009) and author of numerous articles in law reviews and scholarly journals, including Law & Social Inquiry, Law & History Review, and Law & Society Review. His scholarship, teaching, and programmatic efforts have been supported by grants and fellowships from the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the William Nelson Cromwell Foundation, the Social Science Research Council, the National Science Foundation, and the AccessLex Institute.

Mehrotra was appointed director of the ABF in 2015. Prior to his appointment, he was Associate Dean for Research, Professor of Law, and the Louis F. Niezer Faculty Fellow at Indiana University’s Maurer School of Law.  He was also an adjunct professor of history at Indiana University and an Affiliated Faculty member of the Lin & Vincent Ostrom Workshop on Political Theory & Policy Analysis.  From 2007-2011, he was Co-director (with Michael Grossberg) of the Indiana University Center for Law, Society & Culture, where he was a university-wide leader on interdisciplinary approaches to the study of law. In 2005, he received the Indiana University Trustees Teaching Award, and in 2010 he received the law school's Leon E. Wallace Teaching Award. 

Mehrotra’s ties to the American Bar Foundation reach back to the beginning of his academic career.  He was a Doctoral Fellow at the ABF and received his Ph.D. in History from University of Chicago. He received his J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center and his B.A. from the University of Michigan.   After law school and before he embarked on his academic career, Mehrotra was an Associate in the Structured Finance department of the New York offices of J.P. Morgan.

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