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Suzanne Goldberg

Herbert and Doris Wechsler Clinical Professor of Law

Suzanne Goldberg

Herbert and Doris Wechsler Clinical Professor of Law

Suzanne Goldberg, one of the country’s foremost experts on gender and sexuality law and a leading advocate for the LGBTQ community, serves as the Herbert and Doris Wechsler Clinical Professor of Law. She also leads the Law School’s Center for Gender and Sexuality Law and its Sexuality and Gender Law Clinic.

Goldberg joined the Law School’s full-time faculty in 2006. She previously served on the faculties of Rutgers School of Law­–Newark and Fordham Law School. In private practice, Goldberg served as a senior staff attorney at Lambda Legal, the country’s first legal organization focused on achieving full equality for lesbian and gay people. During her time at Lambda, she served as co-counsel for the defendants in the landmark U.S. Supreme Court case Lawrence v. Texas.

In 2015, Goldberg was appointed to serve as Columbia University’s first executive vice president for university life. In this role, she works to reinforce and broaden the university’s commitment to respect, inclusion, and ethical leadership among students, faculty, and administrators. Goldberg is a frequent commentator and analyst for news media on sexuality and gender law, and on discrimination law and litigation issues. Her commentary has been featured on 20/20, CNN, and other national television networks, as well as on radio and news outlets around the world.

Goldberg graduated with honors from Brown University, and went on to serve as a Fulbright Fellow at the National University of Singapore. She earned her J.D. at Harvard Law School and later clerked for Justice Marie Garibaldi of the New Jersey Supreme Court. Goldberg is a recipient of the Law School’s Willis L.M. Reese Prize for Excellence in Teaching.

  • J.D., Harvard University, 1990
  • A.B., Brown University, 1985
Areas of Expertise
  • Sexuality and gender law
  • Civil procedure
  • Civil rights
  • Lawyering and social change
  • Equality theory
Activities and Affiliations
  • Member of the New Jersey Civil Practice Committee of the New Jersey Supreme Court, 2002-2006
  • Annual Review Board of Advisors, Georgetown Journal of Gender and the Law, 1999-­present
  • Founder and past president of the board of directors of Immigration Equality (formerly the Lesbian and Gay Immigration Rights Task Force)
Honors and Awards
  • Willis L.M. Reese Award for Excellence in Teaching, 2009
  • Public Interest Professor of the Year Award, 2008
  • LeGal Foundation Community Vision Award, 2011
  • M. Ashley Dickerson Award from the National Association of Women Lawyers, 2008
  • Dukemenier Award for Sexual Orientation Scholarship, 2006 and 2004
  • Association of American Law Schools Outstanding Scholarly Paper Award, 2003
  • Co-Chair, University Commission on the Status of Women, 2012-present
  • Senior Staff Attorney, Skadden Fellow, Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund, 1991-1993
Professional Experience
  • Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund 1991-2000   
  • Senior staff attorney, Skadden Fellow, 1991-1993
  • Counsel in numerous lesbian and gay civil rights impact litigation cases involving constitutional, statutory and common law claims; responsible for all phases of trial-level and appellate litigation in state and federal courts, including in U.S. Supreme Court
  • Advised and oversaw attorneys and legal interns on litigation, legislative, and public policy analysis projects;
  • Advised employers on personnel matters, benefits and other employment issues.
  • Extensive public speaking, media relations, and authorship and editing of informational, advocacy and scholarly publications.
  • New Jersey Supreme Court 1990-1991
  • Judicial clerkship with Justice Marie Garibaldi
S. Advanced Civil Procedure: Scholarly and Lawyerly Perspectives
Sexuality and Gender Law Clinic
Sexuality and Gender Law Clinic - Project Work