Matthew Diller

Dean, School of Law

Matthew Diller

Matthew Diller is dean of Fordham Law School and the Paul Fuller Professor of Law. He is one of the nation’s leading voices on access to justice issues and a prominent scholar of social welfare law and policy.

Prior to being appointed dean of Fordham Law in 2015, Dean Diller served as dean of the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law from 2009 to 2015. He began his teaching career at Fordham Law in 1993 and was named the Cooper Family Professor of Law and co-director of the Louis Stein Center for Law and Ethics. From 2003 to 2008, he served as the associate dean for academic affairs. Dean Diller worked as a staff attorney in the civil appeals and law reform unit of The Legal Aid Society from 1986 to 1993 and was a law clerk to the Honorable Walter R. Mansfield of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. He earned his A.B. and J.D. degrees, both magna cum laude, from Harvard University,

Dean Diller has lectured and written extensively on the legal dimensions of social welfare policy, including public assistance, Social Security, and disability programs, and on disability law and policy. His articles have appeared in the The Yale Law Journal, UCLA Law Review, NYU Law Review, Fordham Law Review, Texas Law Review, and Michigan Law Review, among other publications, and he is widely cited as an expert by the media, including The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, and National Law Journal. He has taught a range of law school classes, including Civil Procedure, Administrative Law, Social Welfare Law, and Public Interest Law.

In addition to his work as an administrator and scholar, Dean Diller is a member of the New York State Permanent Commission on Access to Justice and is chair of the commission’s Committee on Law School Involvement. He has served on the boards of The Legal Aid Society of New York, Legal Services NYC, the National Center for Law and Economic Justice, and Volunteers of Legal Service. He has also served as vice president and a member of the executive committee of the New York City Bar Association and was co-chair of the Association’s Council on the Profession. Dean Diller is a member of the New York State Judicial Institute on Professionalism in the Law and is a fellow of the American Bar Foundation.

Widely recognized by the legal community and beyond, Dean Diller has received numerous awards for his work and scholarship. In 2021, he delivered the Charles Evans Hughes Lecture at the New York County Lawyers Association. In 2014, the AALS Section on Pro Bono and Public Service Opportunities awarded him the Deborah L. Rhode Award for his leadership in legal education and public service. In 1991, the New York City Bar Association honored him with a legal services award. At Fordham Law School, he has been recognized with the Louis J. Lefkowitz Award for the Advancement of Urban Law from the Fordham Urban Law Journal (2000), the Eugene J. Keefe Award for outstanding contributions to the Law School (2002), and the Dean’s Medal of Achievement (2009).