The 2017 ALWD Conference Program Committee is pleased to announce that our program will include presentations by Rachel Godsil, Tom Romero, Russell McClain, and Erin Kelly.  

Professor Godsil's presentation, Addressing the Effects of Implicit Bias and Racial Anxiety in Law School Dynamics, will introduce the concept of implicit bias which is a primary focus of this year’s conference. Professor Romero will speak on the issue of creating an inclusive curriculum. In his presentation, Maximizing Student Potential by Focusing on Hidden Barriers to Success, Professor McClain will speak on stereotype threat. And Professor Kelly’s presentation, Encouraging Diversity and Creating Community: Research and Reflections, will focus on issues of organizational diversity.  

Rachel Godsil

Rachel Godsil Professor Godsil's teaching and research interests include civil rights, constitutional law, property, land use, environmental justice, and education. 

Professor Godsil is a co-founder and director of research for the Perception Institute, a national consortium of social scientists, law professors, and advocates focusing on the role of the mind sciences in law, policy, and institutional practices. She collaborates with social scientists on empirical research to identify the efficacy of interventions to address implicit bias and racial anxiety. She regularly provides trainings and lectures to a wide range of private and public institutions seeking to address the role of bias and anxiety associated with race, ethnicity, religion, and gender and provided trainings on implicit bias to state judges across the country on behalf of the National Association of State Judges. Godsil is a lead author of the report: "The Science of Equality Volume 1: Addressing Implicit Bias, Racial Anxiety, and Stereotype Threat in Education and Healthcare" (2014) and A Tale of Two Neighborhoods: Implicit Bias in Environmental Decision-Making, in Implicit Racial Bias in the Law (Cambridge University Press 2011).

Professor Godsil also co-authored amicus briefs on behalf of empirical social psychologists in Fisher v. Texas and the National Parent Teacher Association in the Parents Involved in Community Schools v. Seattle School District litigation at the Supreme Court. She is the co-editor of Awakening From the Dream: Civil Rights Under Siege and the New Struggle for Equal Justice (Carolina Academic Press, 2005).

Her recent property work focuses on gentrification, the mortgage crisis and eminent domain, as well as the intersection of race, poverty, and land use decisions. In 2014, Godsil was appointed Chair of the New York City Rent Guidelines Board by Mayor Bill de Blasio. After serving as the convener for the Obama campaign's Urban and Metropolitan Policy Committee and an advisor to the Department of Housing and Urban Development transition team, Professor Godsil co-directed a report to HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan entitled "Retooling HUD for a Catalytic  Federal Government."

During law school, Professor Godsil served as the Executive Article Editor of the Michigan Law Review, was awarded the Henry M. Bates Memorial Award, and elected to the Order of the Coif. After graduation, she clerked for John M. Walker of the Second Circuit Court of Appeals.  Professor Godsil was an Assistant United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York. She was an Associate Counsel at the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, focusing on environmental justice, as well as an associate with Berle, Kass & Case and Arnold & Porter in New York City.

She joined Seton Hall University School of Law in 2000 and has been recognized for her teaching by being nominated for Professor of the Year in 2011, 2002 and 2003. In 2003-2004, she was awarded the Researcher of the Year in Law by Seton Hall University. During fall of 2007, Professor Godsil was a Visiting Professor at the University of Pennsylvania Law School and she taught property at New York University Law School in spring 2009.

Tom Romero

Tom RomeroProfessor Romero is an Associate Professor of Law and is Affiliated Faculty with the Department of History. He teaches and researches in the areas of the legal history of the American West, Latinos and the law, school desegregation in multiracial contexts, property, land use, water law, and urban development and local government in the United States and Latin America. His work on such topics have appeared in the Colorado Law Review, the Utah Law Review, the New Mexico Law Review, the Albany Law Review, the Journal of Gender, Race, and Justice, the Temple Political and Civil Rights Law Review, the Seattle Journal for Social Justice, the Oregon Review of International Law, and the Chicano-Latino Law Review, among others. A native Denverite and undergraduate alum of the University of Denver, Dr. Romero is graduate of the University of Michigan where he received his J.D. and Ph.D. in history.

Prior to joining the faculty of the University of Denver Sturm College of Law in 2010, Dr. Romero was a Professor of Law and History at Hamline University School of Law. From 2000-2003, he also served as the Western Legal Studies Fellow at the University of Colorado at Boulder’s Center of the American West, Law School and Department of History. There, he completed a statewide survey of resources related to the legal history of Colorado and wrote a regular “historical perspective” column for the state bar journal, The Colorado Lawyer.

At the University of Michigan, Dr. Romero acted as a contributing editor of the Michigan Journal of Race and Law, worked with the legal counsel of the student interveners in Gratz v. Bollinger, 539 US 244 (2003), and spent time in Lima, Peru as a consultant on 19th century American property law for Hernando De Soto in his book: The Mystery of Capital: Why Capitalism Triumphs in the West and Fails Everywhere Else. As part of this project, Dr. Romero also collaborated with Peruvian civil lawyers and their work in formalizing title to property that is occupied by families and individuals possessing tracts of land.

Currently, Dr. Romero is revising a book manuscript on multiracial formation and the law in post-World War II Denver, Colorado; where among other aspect of the analysis, he extensively explores Keyes v. School Board No. One, 413 US 189 (1973) (the first non-Southern school desegregation case to reach the United States Supreme Court). In collaboration with the Denver Law Review, Dr. Romero has helped to put together a special symposium analyzing the impact and importance of the Keyes case since it was decided in 1973. As Assistant Vice-Provost for IE Research and Curriculum Initiatives for the larger university, Tom will be working to make the University of Denver one of the premier institutions in the country for the rigorous study of social and institutional inequality through the University’s IRISE initiative.

Dr. Romero is on the Board of Directors of the Colorado Latino Leadership Advocacy & Research Organization (CLLARO) and is an active member of LatCrit, Inc., Law and Society, the American Studies Association, the Western History Association, and the Hispanic National Bar Association.

Russell McClain

Russell McClainLaw School Associate Professor and Associate Dean Russell McClain graduated Order of the Coif from the University of Maryland School of Law in 1995. From 1995 until 2005, Professor McClain was a civil litigator in Los Angeles, California, where his cases involved commercial, entertainment, consumer, and bankruptcy litigation. Professor McClain began teaching in the fall of 2005 as a legal writing instructor at Howard University School of Law. Professor McClain began teaching at the University of Maryland School of Law in 2006, and he received a full-time appointment to the faculty in 2007. Since then, he has worked as the Director of the law school’s Academic Achievement Program, which focuses on assisting with the academic development of law students. In 2016, Professor McClain was promoted to law school associate professor, and he was appointed by the law school Dean to the position of Associate Dean for Diversity and Inclusion.

Professor McClain’s scholarly interest is in the psychological factors that affect academic performance, including stereotype threat and implicit bias. In summary, this research explores whether stereotype threat (the fear of confirming negative group stereotypes) and implicit bias (subconscious categorizations that are biased against racial/ethnic minorities and women) work together to suppress the performance of these groups in higher education, including in law school. See Russell A. McClain, Helping Our Students Reach Their Full Potential: The Insidious Consequences of Ignoring Stereotype Threat, 17 Rutgers Race & L. Rev. 1 (2016). Professor McClain has made numerous presentations to law schools and other professional groups on the topics of stereotype threat and implicit bias. Professor McClain is also developing a guide to academic success for minority law students.

Professor McClain is the Vice President for Diversity for the Association of Academic Support Educators. He has served as a member of the Law School Admissions Council’s Diversity Committee. Professor McClain was honored by the University of Maryland Chapter of the Black Law Students Association as the 2006-2007 Alumnus of the Year. In 2011, the BLSA chapter named him Professor of the Year.

Professor McClain has lived in Hawaii, Nebraska, Guam, Maryland, California, and Virginia. In addition to his scholarly interests, he also enjoys singing and songwriting.

Erin Kelly

Erin KellyErin L. Kelly is a Professor in Work and Organization Studies at the MIT Sloan School of Management and affiliated with the Institute for Work and Employment Research.

Erin’s research investigates the adoption, implementation, and consequences of work-family and anti-discrimination policies in U.S. workplaces. She is part of the Work, Family and Health Network, which was supported by the National Institutes of Health and Centers for Disease Control. Kelly has also investigated non-compliance with the Family and Medical Leave Act, how U.S. companies manage flexible work arrangements, and the effects of corporate affirmative action, diversity, and family policies on the representation of white women, women of color, and men of color in managerial and professional positions.

Kelly received the Rosabeth Moss Kanter Award for Work-Family Research and has published articles in leading journals including the American Sociological Review and the American Journal of Sociology.

Prior to her appointment at MIT Sloan, Erin held the Martindale Chair in Sociology at the University of Minnesota and was an affiliate of the Minnesota Population Center and the Life Course Center.  She was also a member of the graduate faculty at the Carlson School of Management.

She received her BA in sociology from Rice University and her MA and PhD in sociology from Princeton University.


Mark Your Calendar

April 21, 2017
   Early bird registration last day

June 26, 2017
   Hotel reservation due

July 19-21, 2017
   ALWD 2017 Conference