Brett Dignam To Join Columbia Law School

Brett Dignam To Join Columbia Law School
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September 12, 2008 (NEW YORK) – Brett Dignam has joined Columbia Law School, bringing the number to six of new full-time faculty hired over the past several months. The new professors bring expertise in civil rights, separation of powers, mediation, tax law, prisoner rights and constitutional law.
Columbia Law School has now hired 22 new faculty since David M. Schizer became dean in 2004. Through this robust growth in faculty, the Law School has broadened course offerings, reduced class size and further improved opportunities for mentorship between faculty and students. The six new hires this year come on the heels of a record seven new hires in 2007-08.
“This cohort of distinguished scholars enhances the breadth of the Law School’s research capabilities and curriculum and offers greater opportunities for interaction between faculty and students,” Schizer said. “Their addition to our outstanding faculty will ensure that the Law School successfully continues its mission to educate future leaders for a multitude of fields and that it has a vital, positive influence on the legal landscape.”
The six newest hires are:
Alexandra Carter ’03, an associate attorney with Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP and a mediator, who will teach in the Mediation Clinic.

Brett Dignam, a clinical professor of law and leading advocate for prisoners;
Michael J. Graetz, a leading expert on national and international tax law whose work has influenced U.S. tax policy for decades;
Jamal Greene, a constitutional law expert who examines how political framing affects constitutional practice;
Trevor W. Morrison ’98, an expert on separation of powers, federalism and executive branch legal interpretation;
Theodore M. Shaw ’79, one of America’s leading civil rights lawyers who had been the Director-Counsel and President of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund since 2004.
“Many of these new faculty work in public law in various ways, from constitutional law to civil rights to tax policy,” said Professor Richard Briffault, Chair of the Law School’s Lateral Appointments Committee. “Public law has traditionally been a very important field for us, and the addition of these professors builds on and renews our traditional strength in this area. And with the addition of two women and two African American faculty, we have reinforced our ongoing attention to faculty diversity.”
Professor Gillian Metzger, Chair of the Law School’s Entry-Level Appointments Committee, said the new additions are a healthy mix of well-known veterans and talented younger faculty. “This was a very strong recruiting year for us,” Metzger said.
Alexandra Carter
Carter, a 2003 Columbia Law School graduate, will be an associate clinical professor in the Law School’s Mediation Clinic. She has been at Cravath, Swaine & Moore since 2004, where she has served on a team defending against a multi-billion dollar securities class-action lawsuit related to Enron Corporation. She has also served as the senior antitrust associate on several multi-billion dollar mergers and worked on cases involving copyright law. Prior to joining Cravath, she clerked for the Hon. Mark L. Wolf of the United States District of Massachusetts.
Carter, who won the Jane Marks Murphy Prize for clinical advocacy while a student at Columbia Law School, has become a strong advocate of mediation as a valuable solution for many legal challenges. Through Safe Horizon, a New York-based non-profit that specializes in mediation, Carter has served as an approved mediator. She has also supervised student mediations in court-related programs at New York City Civil Court and Harlem Small Claims Court.
After working as a private equity analyst with Goldman Sachs, where she performed quantitative analysis of potential opportunities as well as fund performance, Carter
enrolled at Columbia Law School. She was accepted as a student in the Mediation Clinic, and then later worked as a teaching assistant in the clinic under Professor Carol Liebman. Carter also was articles editor for the Journal of Transnational Law.
Brett Dignam

Dignam has been on the faculty of Yale Law School since 1992, where she has led the Prison Legal Services, Complex Federal Litigation and Supreme Court Advocacy clinics. Her Columbia Law School appointment begins in 2010.

An award-winning teacher, Professor Dignam has supervised students in a broad range of litigation matters and has designed and overseen workshops conducted by students for prisoners at the Federal Correctional Institution in Danbury, Connecticut on issues including immigration, sexual assault, and exhaustion under the Prison Litigation Reform Act. She has participated in major litigation in more than 30 federal and state cases in the area of prisoners’ rights. 

Before entering the legal academy, Professor Dignam served as a law clerk for the Honorable William H. Orrick, U.S. District Court in San Francisco, California, and then developed a prison litigation practice in both federal and state courts. She also served as an attorney in the Criminal Appeals and Tax Enforcement Policy Section, Tax Division, in the Department of Justice, from 1990 to 1992.

Michael Graetz
Graetz, currently the Justus S. Hotchkiss Professor of Law at the Yale Law School, has made substantial contributions to virtually every aspect of tax law and policy including federal income tax, the corporate income tax, the estate tax, international taxation, budget policy, and the financing of Social Security and healthcare. He will join the faculty in 2009.
“Professor Graetz is a sensational addition to our intellectual community,” Dean Schizer said. “He brings extraordinary insight and eloquence to the most important and difficult problems in taxation, and his work has had profound impact on a broad audience, ranging from legal academics and economists to practicing lawyers, government officials, and lay readers.”
Graetz has long been involved in shaping public policy. He served in the United States Department of the Treasury early in his legal career and then again as Deputy Assistant Secretary (Tax Policy) and as Assistant to the Secretary and Special Counsel during the George H.W. Bush administration. He has also testified before Congress and presidential commissions numerous times, and has served as a reporter for the American Law Institute. 
Professor Graetz has written or edited numerous books, including 100 Million Unnecessary Returns: A Simple, Fair, and Competitive Tax Plan for the United States (Yale University Press 2007); Death by a Thousand Cuts: The Fight Over Taxing Inherited Wealth (with Ian Shapiro) (Princeton University Press 2005); and Foundations of International Income Taxation, (Foundation Press 2003).
Jamal Greene
Greene is a constitutional law expert who is as familiar with the clubhouses of pro baseball teams as with the halls of the U.S. Supreme Court. At Columbia he will teach courses related to constitutional law and the federal courts. His expertise is the political construction of constitutional law. He will continue his work on how political framing, such as the rhetoric associated with originalism, affects constitutional practice.
Greene earned his J.D. from Yale in 2005, and then clerked for the Hon. Guido Calabresi of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, in New Haven, for the 2005-06 term. He followed that by clerking for Justice John Paul Stevens at the U.S. Supreme Court during the 2006-07 term.
After graduating from Harvard in 1999, he worked as a reporter for three years at Sports Illustrated. He then enrolled at Yale Law School, where he was an articles editor for the Yale Law Journal and helped organize a 50th anniversary conference of Brown v. Board of Education. He turned his writing skills to legal scholarship, and won the Burton H. Brody Prize for best paper on constitutional privacy, the Smith-Doheny Legal Ethics Writing Prize and the Edgar M. Cullen Prize for the best paper by a first-year law student.
Trevor Morrison
Morrison’s current scholarship looks at how rules can be crafted to guide the executive branch to interpret its legal authority and role under the Constitution – an issue that has garnered headlines during the Bush presidency as the United States grapples with constitutional restraints in the face of the war on terror.
Morrison, a 1998 Columbia Law School graduate, returns to his alma mater after five years at Cornell Law School, where he was an assistant professor from 2003 to 2006 and an associate professor since 2006. Two of his recent articles, published in the Columbia Law Review, touch on issues very much in the public arena: “Constitutional Avoidance in the Executive Branch,” and “Suspension and the Extrajudicial Constitution.”
He clerked in the 1998-99 term for the Hon. Betty B. Fletcher of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in Washington, then spent 1999 to 2000 as a Bristow Fellow at the Office of the Solicitor General in the U.S. Justice Department. During the 2002-03 Term, Morrison clerked for U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg ’59. In 2000-01, Morrison was an attorney-advisor in the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel. In 2001 and 2002 Morrison was an associate at Wilmer, Cutler & Pickering (now WilmerHale).
Theodore Shaw
Shaw, a professor of professional practice, will teach classes in civil procedure and constitutional law. “Since his graduation in 1979, Ted Shaw has carried on a great Columbia Law School tradition of leadership in civil rights advocacy. We welcome him to the faculty where his broad experience and scholarship will add new depth to our public interest law programs,” said Dean Schizer.
Shaw was involved in a number of landmark cases at LDF. He was lead counsel in a coalition that represented African-American and Latino students in the University of Michigan undergraduate affirmative action admissions case. In 2003, the United States Supreme Court heard Grutter v. Bollinger and Gratz v. Bollinger, which challenged the use of affirmative action at the University of Michigan Law School. The Court ruled in favor of diversity as a compelling state interest.
Shaw worked as a trial attorney in the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice in Washington, D.C. from 1979 to1982, where he litigated civil rights cases throughout the country at the trial and appellate levels and at the U.S. Supreme Court. Shaw currently serves on the Legal Advisory Network of the European Roma Rights Council, based in Budapest, Hungary. He has served on both Columbia Law’s Board of Visitors and the Wesleyan University Board of Trustees.
Columbia Law School, founded in 1858, stands at the forefront of legal education and of the law in a global society. Columbia Law School joins traditional strengths in international and comparative law, constitutional law, administrative law, business law and human rights law with pioneering work in the areas of intellectual property, digital technology, sexuality and gender, and criminal law.