Olatunde Johnson

Jerome B. Sherman Professor of Law

Olatunde Johnson

Jerome B. Sherman Professor of Law

Olatunde Johnson is the Jerome B. Sherman Professor of Law at Columbia Law School, where she teaches legislation and civil procedure and writes about modern civil rights legislation, congressional power, and innovations to address discrimination and inequality in the United States.

Johnson clerked for David Tatel on the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia and for Justice John Paul Stevens on the Supreme Court. From 2001 to 2003, Johnson served as constitutional and civil rights counsel to Sen. Edward M. Kennedy on the Senate Judiciary Committee. Prior to that, Professor Johnson worked at the NAACP Legal Defense Fund (LDF), where she conducted trial and appellate level litigation to promote racial and ethnic equity in employment, health, and higher education.

In 2016, she was doubly honored with the Law School's Willis L.M. Reese Prize for Excellence in Teaching and Columbia University's Presidential Award for Outstanding Teaching. She was appointed Vice Dean for Intellectual Life for the 2016–2018 term. In 2017, Johnson was elected a member of the American Law Institute. She joined the Columbia Law School faculty in 2006.

Johnson graduated from Stanford Law School in 1995 and from Yale University in 1989.

  • J.D., Stanford Law School, 1995
  • B.A., Yale University, 1989
  • “Leveraging Antidiscrimination,” in a Nation of Widening Opportunities: The Civil Rights Act at Fifty (Bagenstos and Katz), 2015
  • “Lawyering That Has No Name: Title VI and the Meaning of Private Enforcement,” Stanford Law Review, 2014
  • “The Agency Roots of Disparate Impact,” Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review, 2014
  • “Beyond the Private Attorney General: Equality Directives in American Law,” New York University Law Review, 2012
  • “Stimulus and Civil Rights,” Columbia Law Review, 2011
  • “The Last Plank: Rethinking Public and Private Power to Further Fair Housing,” Journal of Constitutional Law-Penn Law, 2011

View an extended list of Olatunde Johnson's publications

Civil Procedure
Legislation and Regulation
S. Antidiscrimination, Equality and the Law
S. Constitutional Governance Practicum
S. Public Law Workshop