Caroline DeCell

  • Lecturer in Law

Carrie DeCell is a senior staff attorney at the Knight First Amendment Institute and a lecturer in law at Columbia Law School. Her litigation focuses on freedom of speech on social media and government surveillance of speech at the border. DeCell leads the Knight Institute’s litigation in Doc Society v. Blinken, challenging the government’s mass collection and indefinite retention of visa applicants’ social media identifiers. She was a core member of the team litigating Knight Institute v. Trump, establishing that public officials’ social media accounts—including the president's Twitter account—are subject to the First Amendment. She has authored amicus briefs addressing First Amendment protections for publishers of leaked or stolen information of public concern, and statutory safeguards against government surveillance of journalists and activists.

Prior to joining the Institute, DeCell was a senior associate at Jenner & Block LLP. As a member of the firm’s Media & First Amendment practice group, she handled a variety of matters involving constitutional and statutory speech protections and public access to information. Additionally, as a member of the firm’s Appellate and Supreme Court practice group, she drafted numerous merits and amicus briefs in cases before the Supreme Court and other courts of appeals. DeCell graduated from the University of Pennsylvania and Harvard Law School, where she served as the Essays & Book Reviews editor of the Harvard Law Review. Following law school, she clerked for the Honorable Judith W. Rogers on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit.