Howard University School of Law
Professor Aníbal Rosario Lebrón is a Puerto Rican professor, attorney, linguist, and photographer. He holds an LL.M. in Legal Theory from New York University and a J.D., a Post-Graduate Certificate in Linguistics, and a B.S. from the University of Puerto Rico. He currently teaches Legal Writing, Spanish for Lawyers, Family Law, and Gender, Sex and Sexuality & the Law at Howard University School of Law. In addition, Professor Rosario Lebrón has taught at Universidad de Puerto Rico, Hofstra University, University of Louisville, and Universidad Interamericana. He is a former member of the Board of Directors of LatCrit. His research examines the interconnection between Evidence, Family, Criminal, and Constitutional Law from a cross-disciplinary lens. Specifically, he studies how to reform the law to empower groups such as women, LGTBQ+ people, minors, and people of color in their pursuit of equality. Professor Rosario Lebrón is also committed to bridging the educational achievement gap and has worked in numerous pipeline initiatives.
Topic: The Rules that Bound White Supremacy
In order to dismantle white supremacy, legal reforms should look beyond substantive laws and reform the rules under which the legal system operates. Specifically, evidence rules should be reform to account for the use of informal or functional evidence by legal actors. The presentation will explore how we should revamp our evidentiary system to correct for the discounting that people of color experience vis a vis the credibility excess white people enjoy.
Jody David Armour
Professor, USC Gould School of Law
Jody David Armour is an author, playwright, and USC Professor of Law. A widely published scholar and popular lecturer, he is a Soros Justice Senior Fellow of The Open Society Institute’s Center on Crime, Communities and Culture. He has published an award-winning book, “Negrophobia and Reasonable Racism” and various law review articles. His latest works include a book, “N*gga Theory: Race, Language, Unequal Justice, and the Law” (LARB Books, August 2020), and article, “Law, Language and Politics” (University of Pennsylvania Journal of Constitutional Law, 2020). He teaches a diverse array of subjects, including Criminal Law, Torts, and Stereotypes.
Topic: Fighting White Supremacy in the Courts and Legislatures
Professor Amour will discuss the forces that have created racialized mass incarceration and over-policed black communities. He argues that changing the situation requires a revolution in consciousness in matters of blame and punishment, and the rejection of the prevailing carceral conception of justice and the acceptance of a radically new one. It requires a basic overhaul in our collective moral compass, a transformational shift away from retribution, retaliation, and revenge and toward restoration, rehabilitation, and redemption. Voters in many places are electing prosecutors, lawmakers, and judges who embrace this new conception of justice and moral framework. Professor Amrour will also discuss the racial implications of competing conceptions of justice and why judges, lawmakers, and prosecutors who care about addressing systemic racism must be willing to think about crime and punishment in a fundamentally new way.
Blaine G. Saito
Assistant Professor, Northeastern University School of Law
Blaine G. Saito, an expert in the field of taxation, joined the Northeastern faculty as Assistant Professor of Law in 2020. His research focuses on the intersection of tax rules, economics, tax administration, and social policy. His current research focuses on tax expenditures and their use in social policy and international tax issues. His work has been published in the Virginia Tax Review, Harvard Journal on Legislation, and Georgetown Journal of Law and Public Policy. Saito most recently served as a Climenko Fellow and Lecturer on Law at Harvard Law School. He graduated from Harvard College in 2004 with an A.B. in chemistry, and went on to earn a J.D. from Harvard Law School and an MPP from the Harvard Kennedy School.
Topic: Tax Allyship
The recent murder of George Floyd and other unarmed black people at the hands of the police have revitalized awareness and activism on dismantling white supremacy that filters through many systems in American society. The area of tax policy is no exception. Voices that sought to highlight the racial inequities in our tax laws and policies are finally getting voice within the field.
This essay seeks to build on this momentum. It continues the clarion call of those in the world of tax to continue to research and advocate for a more racially just tax system at all levels of government. It also urges those engaged in tax policy to reach out to communities of color to better understand their lived experiences and how various forms of taxation undermine the opportunity of equity.
The essay also calls on those who are advocates for civil rights and racial justice to engage more with the tax system. The unique views of these advocates can help alert tax experts to blind spots and can help to show the diversity of harms that different communities of color can face. It also encourages many more people who want to make racial justice to develop greater facility with the complexities of taxation.
Associate Professor of Communication and African and African Diaspora Studies, Boston College; Associate Professor of Law, Boston College Law School
Anjali Vats is interested in issues related to race, law, communication, and popular culture, with particular focus on intellectual property. Her book, The Color of Creatorship: Intellectual Property, Race and the Making of Americans (Stanford University Press, 2020), examines the relationship between copyright, patent, and trademark law, race, and national identity formation. Vats has been published in journals and law reviews, including the Quarterly Journal of Speech, Communication and Critical/Cultural Studies, Communication, Culture & Critique, and the Cardozo Arts & Entertainment Law Journal. In 2016-2017, as an AAUW Postdoctoral Fellow, Vats taught at UC Davis School of Law. She was previously a faculty member in the Department of Communication and Culture at Indiana University, where she was affiliated with the Center for Intellectual Property Research at the Maurer School of Law. Before becoming a professor, Vats served as law clerk to the now-retired Chief Justice A. William Maupin of the Supreme Court of Nevada.
Professor, Southern University Law Center
Deleso Alford is a Shreveport, Louisiana native and Professor of Law at Southern University Law Center. earned a B.S., magna cum laude at Southern University A&M College, a J.D. at Southern University Law Center, and an LL.M. at Georgetown University Law Center. She has a Certification in Clinical Bioethics from the Medical College of Wisconsin.
She is the Senior Editor and author of an Encyclopedia entry entitled “Medical Experimentation and Surgery, Enslaved Women in America: An Encyclopedia”, Editor in Chief, Daina Ramey Berry (Greenwood Press/ABC-CLIO). Professor Alford’s original scholarly research piece entitled, Critical Race Feminist Bioethics: Telling Stories in Law School and Medical School in Pursuit of “Cultural Competency,” 72 Alb. L. Rev. 961, is one of the featured excerpts that will supply lessons to advocates for social justice in the forthcoming textbook, Critical Justice: Systemic Advocacy in Law and Society
Francisco Valdes, Steven Bender, and Jennifer Hill (June 2021, West Academic).
She is a recognized thought leader in Critical Race Feminist theory. Her scholarship expertly weaves stories, events, and lessons from both law and medicine to produce new insights while demonstrating the power of her identity-inflected analysis.
Topic: Integrating HER-stories: Curriculum and Beyond
Professor Alford focuses on what she refers to as “HER stories”—the unique and particularized lived experiences of women of color generally, and black women specifically intersecting with health care and research.
Assistant Professor, LSU Law
Professor Clare Ryan is the Harry S. Redmon, Jr. Assistant Professor of Law at the LSU Law Center. She holds a J.D. and a Ph.D. in Law from Yale Law School. Prof. Ryan teaches International Human Rights Law and Family Law. Her scholarship focuses on children’s rights and the parent-child relationship. Prof. Ryan is honored to serve as one of the faculty advisors to the LSU Law Journal for Social Justice & Policy.