Leventhal Symposium Honors Professor Peter L. Strauss
Strauss, Who Joined Columbia Law School Faculty in 1971, Is a Leading Authority on Administrative Law, Legal Methods, and Statutory Interpretation
New York, May 11, 2015—Scholars, students, and alumni gathered to honor the remarkable work of Columbia Law School Professor Peter L. Strauss at the Harold Leventhal Memorial Symposium on April 24. The gathering, held on the occasion of Strauss' 75th birthday, was sponsored by Columbia Law School's Center for Constitutional Governance (CCG) and the Columbia Law Review.
|Professor Peter L. Strauss' extensive scholarship on administrative law, statutory interpretation, and the administrative and regulatory state inspired this year's Harold Leventhal Memorial Symposium.|
A series of conversations examined Strauss’ influential scholarship on administrative law, statutory interpretation, and the administrative and regulatory state, and explored the implications of these increasingly contentious topics for the future of governance in the United States and around the world.
Strauss, the Betts Professor of Law, has been a member of the Columbia Law School faculty since 1971. In addition to teaching courses on administrative law, legal methods, and legislation, he has published extensively on issues including rulemaking, separation of powers, and statutory interpretation. Strauss is a longtime editor of the leading casebook on administrative law his mentor Walter Gellhorn established, Gellhorn and Byse's Administrative Law: Cases and Comments, along with Columbia Law School Professor and CCG faculty director Gillian E. Metzger '96 and administrative law professors Todd D. Rakoff and Cynthia R. Farina. Each spoke at the symposium. A graduate of Harvard College and Yale Law School, Strauss served as the first general counsel of the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission and has lectured widely around the world on U.S. administrative law.
|Professor Gillian E. Metzger '96, director of the Center for Constitutional Governance, speaks about|
Strauss' immense influence on administrative law.
The daylong celebration kicked off with remarks from Rakoff, a professor of administrative law at Harvard Law School, and Dennis Fan ’15 and Richard Cleary ’15, respectively the editor-in-chief and symposium editor of the Columbia Law Review.
Later panels delved into themes and threads from Strauss’ work. The first, concerning the political polarization of Congress and agencies, featured discussion of two co-written papers, one by Metzger and Cornell Law School’s Farina, and the other by Professor Abbe R. Gluck of Yale Law School and Professor Anne Joseph O’Connell of Berkeley Law School, who could not be present. A second panel exploring political control of agency processes included commentary from Professors Kevin M. Stack of Vanderbilt Law School and Wendy E. Wagner of the University of Texas at Austin Law School. After lunchtime remarks from Metzger, the attendees reconvened for a final panel on Congress, courts, and agencies with panelists John F. Manning of Harvard Law School and Michael E. Herz of the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law at Yeshiva University.
|Harvard Law Professor Todd Rakoff, a longtime colleague of Strauss', kicks off the symposium.|
Testimonials to Strauss’ immense influence were free flowing, as were personal tributes to Strauss from panelists who recalled how he had helped them in their careers or scholarship.
“This is a lot better than a memorial!” Strauss joked, when it was his turn to address the gathering.
Strauss remarked how touched he was that this event should be held as the Harold Leventhal Symposium, as he still regularly invokes the work of Judge Leventhal ‘36 with praise in his classes.
“Letting my students know how Columbians have contributed to the rule of law,” he said, “has been a constant theme of my teaching.”
The day concluded with a reception and remarks from Krystina Ho ’16 and John Goerlich ’16, the new editor-in-chief and symposium editor of the Review.
|Strauss converses with guests at the symposium.|