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UC Davis Law Professor Appointed 2019-20 William H. Neukom Fellows Research Chair in Diversity and Law

April 4, 2019, Press releases

CHICAGO, April 4, 2019 Angela P. Harris, a renowned scholar and Professor of Law, has been named the American Bar Foundation (ABF) 2019-20 William H. Neukom Fellows Research Chair in Diversity and Law. Harris is a Distinguished Professor of Law and the Boochever and Bird Endowed Chair for the Study and Teaching of Freedom and Equality at the University of California (UC), Davis School of Law. She works in the field of critical legal theory, examining how law interacts with race, gender, sexuality, class, and other dimensions of power and identity.

Established in 2014, the William H. Neukom Fellows Research Chair in Diversity and Law leads empirical and interdisciplinary research at the ABF on law and legal processes related to issues of diversity and inequality experienced by women, people of color, people with disabilities, and persons from the LGBTQ community in legal practice and before the law. The position was created to build upon the work of the ABF's already robust research program on aspects of law and inequality in the legal profession and institutions of justice, as well as on the impact of diversity on legal processes and institutions. 

“We are excited to welcome Professor Angela Harris as the 2019-20 Neukom Fellows Research Chair in Diversity and Law,” said ABF Executive Director Ajay K. Mehrotra. “The Neukom Chair was designed to support just this type of innovative and pathbreaking scholarship, and Professor Harris embodies the principles and values upon which the Chair was founded.”

During her year as Neukom Chair, Harris will work on a book project entitled The Color of Farming. This project, grounded in law and political economy, will use farming as a site to explore the interactions of state power and market power expressed through law. Through historical investigation and present perspectives from new farmers of color, the book will examine the significance of race law in addition to economic regulation in shaping American farming.

"I'm thrilled to be joining the ABF as the incoming Neukom Chair,” said Harris. “I have heard nothing but wonderful things about the amazing cohort of people at the ABF.”

Harris continued, “Indeed, my visit will be a reunion with some people I have known and admired for many years, like the incomparable Laura Beth Nielsen. This is also a fantastic opportunity to return to Chicago, where I went to graduate school and law school and where I served as a clerk at the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals.”

Harris is the author of a number of widely reprinted and influential articles and essays in critical legal theory. She is a prolific co-author of casebooks, including Criminal Law: Cases and MaterialsRace and Races: Cases and Materials for a Diverse AmericaGender and Law; and Economic Justice. She is also one of the editors for Presumed Incompetent: The Intersections of Race and Class for Women in Academia (2013), a well-received anthology focused on the experiences of women of color faculty and graduate students. 

Harris received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Michigan and a master’s degree in social science (with a specialization in the sociology of culture) from the University of Chicago, where she also received her J.D. She began her career at the UC Berkeley School of Law in 1989 and has been a visiting professor at the law schools of Stanford, Yale, and Georgetown. Prior to joining the UC Davis School of Law faculty in 2011, Harris served as vice dean of research and faculty development at the State University of New York- University at Buffalo School of Law.

About the American Bar Foundation

The American Bar Foundation (ABF) is among the world’s leading research institutes for the empirical and interdisciplinary study of law. The ABF seeks to expand knowledge and advance justice through innovative, interdisciplinary, and rigorous empirical research on law, legal processes, and legal institutions.  To further this mission the ABF will produce timely, cutting-edge research of the highest quality to inform and guide the legal profession, the academy, and society in the United States and internationally. The ABF’s primary funding is provided by the American Bar Endowment and the Fellows of The American Bar Foundation.

About the William H. Neukom Fellows Research Chair in Diversity and Law

The William H. Neukom Fellows Research Chair in Diversity and Law, established in 2014, is dedicated to the values of diversity in the legal profession, the creation of communities of equity and opportunity, and the provision of equal justice through law. The Neukom Fellows Research Chair was made possible through generous gifts from William H. Neukom; Walmart; The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation; Microsoft Corporation; the Sidley Austin Foundation; Northrop Grumman Corporation; Kirkland and Ellis LLP; and The Fellows of the American Bar Foundation.

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Posted by Whitney Peterson

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