Two of Four Dean Search Finalists Announced at CUNY Law

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CUNY Law School has announced two of the four finalists in its dean search.  One of the finalists is Feminist Law Prof Lolita Buckner Inniss.  The other is the Honorable Fern Fisher.  (The two others have not yet been announced.)

Here is Dr. Inniss’ bio:

Dr. Lolita Buckner Inniss is a professor at Cleveland‐Marshall College of Law,Cleveland State University. She teaches several courses including property law, criminal law, comparative racism and the law and real estate transactions. She has served in a number of campus leadership positions, such as secretary of the University‐wide Faculty Senate, an elective position, and chair of the University‐wide Admissions and Standards committee.

She holds a Ph.D. in Law with a specialization in Comparative Equality Jurisprudence, African Diaspora Studies and Feminist Legal Theory from Osgoode Hall, York University. She also holds an LL.M. with Distinction from Osgoode Hall, York University, where one of her principal topics was African American reparations, a J.D. from the University of California, Los Angeles, where she was an extern for the Honorable Consuelo B. Marshall of the United States District Court for the Central District of California and an editor of the National Black Law Journal.

Dr. Inniss also holds an A.B. from Princeton University, where she majored in Romance Languages and Literature with certifications (minors) in African American and Latin American Studies. From 2012 to 2014 she held the Elihu Root Peace Fund Visiting Professorship in Women’s Studies, a distinguished visiting chair at Hamilton College in Clinton, New York, where she offered interdisciplinary gender, race and law courses to undergraduates.

Before coming to Cleveland‐Marshall, Dr. Inniss served as a clinic director at Seton Hall University Law School in New Jersey, where she led the Immigration Clinic. She also served as a clinic director at Widener University Law School in Delaware, where she founded and led an Immigration Clinic. Before joining the legal academy, Dr. Inniss was a founder and leader of two law practices in New Jersey where she focused on real estate transactions and litigation, immigration law, and criminal law. She was also a pro bono attorney for the National Lawyer’s Guild Immigration Project.

Her research addresses the geographic, historic and visual norms of law, especially in the context of comparative constitutionalism, gender and race. She is the author of dozens of articles, essays, book reviews and chapters that have appeared in Texas Law Review, Washington University Law Review, and many other distinguished publications in the United States and beyond. She has also been a contributor to the opinion pages of periodicals such as the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Chronicle of Higher Education and the Cleveland Plain Dealer.

Her current major research project is a book titled The Princeton Fugitive Slave: James Collins Johnson, a socio‐legal account of race, gender, slavery and the law at Princeton University. A portion of this book project was the basis of her selection as a fellow of the New York University‐Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique Memory Project.

Dr. Inniss is also one of the contributors to a volume titled International Law’s Objects (Oxford University Press), a work that addresses the legal, social and metaphoric aspects of various material objects and images in international law. In addition, Dr. Inniss is a chambers leader and author for the Feminist International Judgments book project. She is also a pro bono attorney with the American Bar Association/United Nations Development Program, where her most recent project was a legislative analysis report for the Government of Grenada.

Here is Justice Fisher’s bio:

Justice Fern Fisher serves as Deputy Chief Administrative Judge for New York City Courts and is also charged with state‐wide responsibility for access to justice issues. Justice Fisher’s career started in the Civil Court as a Legal Services attorney practicing in Manhattan Housing Court. Justice Fisher served as Deputy Director of Harlem Legal Services, Inc. and as an Assistant Attorney General of the New York State Department of Law. For four years, she provided pro bono legal services to Harlem‐based community organizations as a project director of the National Conference of Black Lawyers. In 1989, she was appointed Judge of the Housing Part of the Civil Court, and later, in 1990, was elected to the Civil Court where she served as Deputy Supervising Judge. Justice Fisher was elected in 1993 to the Supreme Court of the State of New York where she was assigned to the City and Matrimonial Parts. In December 1996, she was appointed Administrative Judge of the Civil Court of the City of New York where she served until March 2009 when she was appointed to her current position.

Justice Fisher contributes the views from the bench in Residential Landlord‐Tenant Law in New York, a practice guide by Lawyers Cooperative Publishing. She served as the host of a series of television shows on housing issues for Crosswalk’s, a public service cable show. Justice Fisher is a founding member of the Metropolitan Black Bar Association and is a member of Judicial Friends (an affiliate of the Judicial Council of the National Bar Association), the Association of the Bar of the City of New York and the New York County Lawyers Association. Justice Fisher also served as the Chair of the Housing Court (Judges) Disciplinary Committee and Chair of the Anti‐Bias Committee of the New York County Supreme Court. In 2006 she was the recipient of the Harvard Law School Gary Bellow Public Interest Award. She received her B.A. summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa in 1975 from Howard University and a J.D. in 1978 from Harvard Law School.

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