2000 - Harvard University

Professor of Law (2006-   )
Assistant Professor of Law (2000-06)
Co-Director, Harvard Law School Legal History Colloquium, 2002-06
Reginald F. Lewis Fellow, Harvard Law School, 1999-2000

Co-Director, Annual Workshop, Charles Warren Center for Studies in American History, 2008-09  (Topic: Race-Making and Law-Making in the Long Civil Rights Movement)

Faculty Fellow, Edmond J. Safra Foundation Center for Ethics, 2004-05

1992-1994 Associate, Covington & Burling, Washington, D.C.

1991-1992 Law Clerk, Hon. Robert L. Carter, United States District Court
for the Southern District of New York

1987-1988 Member of Technical Staff, AT&T Bell Laboratories, Whippany, N.J.


American Legal History / History of the American Legal Profession / Property


2005 - Princeton University, Ph.D., History
1996 - Princeton University, M.A., History
1991 - Harvard Law School, Juris Doctorate, cum laude

1987 - Drexel University, B.S., Electrical Engineering, high honors (magna cum laude)



Representing the Race: The Transformation of Civil Rights Lawyering and Politics, 1920-1955  (forthcoming, Harvard University Press)

The Bluebook: A Uniform System of Citation (principal editor; Harvard Law Review Association, 15th ed., 1991).


“Law and Mass Politics in the Making of the Civil Rights Lawyer, 1931-1941,”  93 Journal of American History 37 (June 2006)  (refereed journal)

“Rethinking Civil Rights Lawyering and Politics in the Era before Brown,” 115 Yale Law Journal 256 (November 2005)

“A Social History of Everyday Practice: Sadie T.M. Alexander and the Incorporation of Black Women into the American Legal Profession, 1925-60,” 87 Cornell Law Review 1405 (2002)

Reprinted in Susan D. Carle, ed., Lawyers’ Ethics and the Pursuit of Social Justice: A Critical Reader (New York University Press, 2005)

And reprinted in Adrien Katherine Wing, ed., Critical Race Feminism: A Reader, 2d ed. (New York University Press, 2003)

“Sadie Tanner Mossell Alexander,” in Susan Ware, ed., Notable American Women 1976 to 2000: A Biographical Dictionary (Harvard University Press, 2004)

“Law, Society, Identity and the Making of the Jim Crow South: Travel and Segregation on Tennessee Railroads, 1875-1905,” 24 Law and Social Inquiry 377 (1999)  (refereed journal)

Reprinted in Ian Haney López, Race, Law and Society (Ashgate Publishing, 2007)

Editorials, Shorter Works

“Even at Harvard, Obama Had a Knack for Bonding with Diverse People,” The Sunday Patriot News (Harrisburg, Pa), February 22, 2008.

“Which Side is Brown v. Board  On?”, Los Angeles Times, July 4, 2007.

Reprinted as “The Court, Race and Brown: Precedents to Suit Each Side: Famous Figures in Civil Rights History Speak in Two Voices,” Baltimore Sun, July 8, 2007.

“The Myth of Brown?,” The Pocket Part: A Companion to the Yale Law Journal, November 2005,, with replies

“The Obama Phenomenon: How Past and Present Resonate,” Journal of Blacks in Higher Education Autumn 2004, p. 99

Case Note, “Legality of Divestment Statutes,” 103 Harvard Law Review 817 (1990)


“The Role of Law in the Making of Racial Identity: The Case of Harrisburg’s W. Justin Carter.”  Annual John Gedid Lecture, Widener University, January 2008

“The Relationship Between the Legal Realist and the Civil Rights Movements.”
Annual Hugo L. Black Lecture, University of Alabama, October 2003


“Civil Rights Lawyering, then and Now”
Annual Meeting of the Organization of American Historians.   New York, NY.  March 2008

“The Legal History of Race Relations in the Twentieth Century: The Persistence of the Common Law Tradition.”
Annual Meeting of the Association of American Law Schools.  New York, NY.  January 2008

“A Cultural History of Civil Rights Lawyering”
U.C.L.A. Legal History / Advanced Critical Race Theory Workshop.  March 2007

“Rethinking the Origins of the Civil Rights Lawyer.”
Northwestern University Critical Race Studies Faculty Reading Group.  Sept. 2006
Annual Meeting of the American Society for Legal History.  Austin, Texas.
October 2004
Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.  Washington, D.C. September 2004

“Transformations in Civil Rights Lawyering and Politics: The 1930s.”
Washington University in St. Louis Law School Faculty Colloquium.  March 2004.
Columbia Law School Legal History Series.  January 2004

“Constructing the Civil Rights Lawyer: The 1920s.” 
Boston College Legal History Colloquium, April 2003

“Race Uplift, Performance and Professionalism.” 
Conference on Law and the ‘Disappearance’ of Class in Twentieth-Century America, University of Pennsylvania Law School.  November 2002

“Culture, Class and Civil Rights: Progressive Black Lawyering in the Interwar Years.”  Annual Meeting of the Law and Society Association.  Chicago, Illinois.  May 1999

“Raymond Pace Alexander’s Self-Fashioning: Race, Class and Professionalism.”
Annual Meeting of the American Society for Legal History.  Seattle, Washington.  October 1998

“Black Lawyering in the Early Twentieth Century: Race Leadership and the Markers of Professional Authority.”
New York University Legal History Colloquium.  April 1999
Legal History Consortium, University of Pennsylvania Law School.  November, 1998

“Race, Gender, Class and the Career of Jim Crow.”
Annual Meeting of the American Studies Association.  Kansas City, Missouri.  November, 1996

“Segregation and Selfhood in the New South: African-American Women and Railroad Car   Segregation in Tennessee, 1870 to 1914.” 
Annual Meeting of the Law and Society Association. Glasgow, Scotland, United Kingdom.  July, 1996


Alphonse Fletcher, Sr. Fellow, Fletcher Foundation, 2007-08

William Nelson Cromwell Fellowship, American Society for Legal History and William Nelson Cromwell Foundation, 2006

Faculty Fellow, Edmond J. Safra Foundation Center for Ethics, Harvard University, 2004-05

Reginald F. Lewis Fellow, Harvard Law School, 1999-2000

Princeton Society of Fellows of the Woodrow Wilson Foundation, Princeton University,

Ford Foundation Predoctoral Fellow, Ford Foundation and National Research Council,

Davis Merit Prize, Princeton University, 1994-96.

Earl Warren Scholar, Harvard Law School, 1988-91

National Merit Scholar, 1982-87

Elected to Tau Beta Pi (national engineering academic honorary society), 1986


American Society for Legal History
Nominating Committee, 2004 to 2007
Program Committee, 1999

Association of American Law Schools
Committee on Research, 2005 to 2006

Board of Editors, Massachusetts Legal History, 2004 to present

Board of Overseers, Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Historical Society,
2002 to present

Independent Electoral Commission of South Africa
Co-Area Director – Monitoring for the United States and Canada
 March – April, 1994


Member, American Society for Legal History, 1996 to present
Member, American Historical Association, 1998 to 2000; 2002 to present
Member, Organization of American Historians, 1999 to present
Member, American Bar Association, 2000 to present
Member, District of Columbia Bar, 1993 to present
Member, Bar of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania (inactive status), 1991 to present