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Recent Updates Fordham offices remain staffed and operating remotely. The University has released its plan, Fordham Forward, to resume in-person teaching and learning for the Fall semester. Full Details

Center on Race, Law, and Justice

Activists gathered for peaceful rally for racial equality

The United States is in the midst of a national conversation about race and inequality unlike any seen in a generation.

Law, as it did in the civil rights struggles of the 1950s and 1960s, will play a central role in addressing the racial disparities and inequality that threaten our democracy and system of justice in the 21st century.

Fordham’s Center on Race, Law and Justice will engage domestic and global issues of race, law, and equity that will help identify, analyze, and create new solutions to the key civil rights challenges of our time.

The center will

  • examine the role of law in structuring racial inequality and disadvantage in the domestic and global contexts
  • intervene in current debates about race, citizenship, and democracy
  • promote critical, interdisciplinary, and methodologically innovative scholarship and approaches to understanding race and discrimination
  • generate insights and solutions necessary to achieve real and positive change on race issues
  • inform legal pedagogy and praxis concerning matters of race, diversity, and opportunity in legal institutions and programs
  • collaborate with law firms and other legal institutions to address issues of diversity and access in the legal profession

Law schools have an important role to play in the burgeoning new movement for civil rights. With its Center on Race, Law and Justice, Fordham will be positioned front and center.

Interdisciplinary Areas

The Center’s approach to race and law will incorporate fields such as history, sociology, and political science and will feature analytical tools drawn from

  • Critical Race Theory
  • Comparative Law
  • Empirical Methods
  • Structuralism and Institutional Reform
  • Legal History
  • Feminist Legal Theory

Courses / Areas of Law

  • Affirmative Action
  • Antidiscrimination
  • Civil Rights Advocacy
  • Criminal Law and Procedure
  • Community and Economic Development
  • Education
  • Employment
  • Environmental Justice
  • Family and Family Advocacy
  • Health and Biomedical Ethics
  • Housing
  • Human Rights
  • Immigration
  • International Development and Sustainability
  • Internet and Information Technologies
  • Legal Ethics
  • Legal History
  • Legislation
  • National Security
  • Poverty
  • Urban Studies
  • Voting Rights
  • Workers Rights and Solidarity


The Center will function as an incubator and a platform for advancing cutting-edge interdisciplinary scholarship on racial identity, cumulative disadvantage, and racial justice tools that are grounded in critical analyses, empirical methods, and comparative inquiry.

It will help generate original research and analysis of core civil rights and social justice issues.

It will promote innovations in legal pedagogy, practice, and professionalism in relation to issues of race, civil rights, and diversity.

Advisory Board

The Center on Race, Law & Justice is grateful to the members of its advisory board for providing invaluable guidance and support throughout the year.

Vivian M. Arias, Esq. ’07
Thompson & Knight, LLP

The Honorable Denny Chin ’78
United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Brenda L. Gill, Esq. ’95
Burgher Gray Jaffe LLP

Angelo R. Guisado, Esq. ’12
Staff Attorney
Center for Constitutional Rights

Noah S. Heller, Esq. ’00
Chief Executive Officer
Katten Muchin & Rosenman, LLP

Megan L. Hogan, Esq. ’06
Vice President, Human Capital Management
Goldman Sachs Group Inc.

Michelle Y. Johnson-Lewis, Esq. ’93
Senior Director Franchise Counsel
Celgene Corporation

Michael Kim, Esq. ’97
Of Counsel
Blank Rome LLP

Rachel M. Kleinman, Esq. ’05
Senior Counsel
NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc.

William Malpica, Esq. ’00
Martin LLP

Willajeanne F. McLean, Esq. ’86
Faculty, Law Instruction and Research
University of Connecticut

Anilu L. Vazquez-Ubarri, Esq. ’02
Chief Diversity Officer & Global Head of Talent Development
Goldman Sachs Group Inc.


Past Events

June 17, 2020
Black Lives Matter and the Criminal (In)Justice System: A Conversation with the Bench
Judge Theodore A. McKee, Judge, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit - Speaker
The Hon. Justice Dr. Willie Mutunga (Ret.), Former Chief Justice of Kenya and President of the Supreme Court of Kenya - Speaker

April 19, 2018
The Colloquium on Race and Ethnicity
Tracey Meares, Professor of Law, Yale University School of Law

March 15, 2018
The Colloquium on Race and Ethnicity
Yuko Miki, Professor, History Department & Latino Studies, Fordham University

February 26, 2018
Reading Race Book Club
Gilbert King, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Devil in the Grove

Thursday, 15 February 2018
Rethinking the Politics of Care Work
Premilla Nadasen, Professor, History Department, Barnard College

Tuesday, 23 January 2018
Ethno-racial Legislation in Peru: The Building Blocks for the Afroperuvian Political Subjectivity
Mariela Noles Cotito, Consultant to the Government of Peru; Teacher Assistant, Institute for the Study of Latin America and the Caribbean, University of South Florida

Thursday–Friday, 2-3 November 2017
Fifty Years of Loving v. Virginia and the Continued Pursuit of Racial Equality
The Fordham Law Review Symposium, presented in conjunction with the Center on Race, Law & Justice, marked the 50th anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Loving v. Virginia, 388 U.S. 1 (1967), and included a screening of excerpts of the HBO Documentary The Loving Story ;and roundtable discussions of the issues the decisin raises about interracial relationships, mixed-race children, and racial equality in the 21st Century.

Thursday, 26 October 2017
Contracting Our Way to Inequality: American Sperm Markets and the Sale of Racial Essence
Camille Gear Rich, Associate Provost for Faculty and Student Initiatives in the Social Sciences Professor of Law and Sociology, University of Southern California Gould School of Law

Tuesday, 11 April 2017
The Legal Barbarians: Comparative Law, Legal Identities and the Global South
Daniel Bonilla Maldonado, Associate Professor, Faculty of Law, University of Los Andes, Colombia

Tuesday, 24 January 2017
Criminal Procedure and the Good Citizen
I. Bennett Capers, Stanley A. August Professor of Law, Brooklyn Law School