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Law School adds new faculty for 2021-2022

August 18, 2021

Lisa Fairfax, Jasmine Harris, Sandra Mayson, and Jennifer Rothman join the standing faculty, and three practitioners, including two Law School alums, join the Legal Practice Skills faculty.

The University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School welcomes four distinguished scholars and teachers to the standing faculty, with Lisa Fairfax, Jasmine Harris, Sandra Mayson, and Jennifer Rothman bringing their diverse intellectual pursuits to the Law School.

These new hires are in addition to the ten standing faculty members who have joined the Law School in the previous five years. They each bring a wealth of scholarly and experiential expertise and embody a range of diverse perspectives and methodologies in their teaching and research.

Additionally, three practitioners have been appointed to the Legal Practice Skills (LPS) faculty to enhance academic programs and educate and mentor Penn Law students.

Standing Faculty

Lisa Fairfax

Lisa M. Fairfax joins the University of Pennsylvania as a Presidential Professor and co-director of the Institute for Law & Economics, teaching Corporations along with other business law courses at the Law School.

Before coming to Penn Law, Professor Fairfax was the Alexander Hamilton Professor of Business Law at George Washington University Law School, where she taught courses in the business arena, including Corporations, Contracts, and seminars covering topics in securities law, corporate transactions, and corporate governance. Additionally, she was the Director of the GW Corporate Law and Governance Initiative.

Fairfax’s scholarly interests include corporate governance matters, fiduciary obligations, board-shareholder engagement, board composition and diversity, shareholder activism, affinity fraud, and securities fraud. Her book, Shareholder Democracy: A Primer on Shareholder Activism and Participation, is a seminal work on shareholder activism. Additionally, Foundation Press referred to Fairfax’s new textbook, Business Organizations: An Integrated Approach, as an “especially big hit.” She is also the author of many law review articles, including one of the ten best corporate and securities articles of 2019, “The Securities Law Implications of Financial Illiteracy.”

Fairfax is a former member of the Investor Advisory Committee of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), and a former member of both the National Adjudicatory Council of the Financial Industry Regulation Authority (FINRA) and FINRA’s NASDAQ Market Regulation Committee. She is a current member of the American Law Institute (ALI) as well as a member of the Advisory Group for the ALI Restatement of Law, Corporate Governance. Fairfax serves on the boards of the Institute for Law and Economic Policy (ILEP), the SEC Historical Society, and DirectWomen, an organization aimed at increasing board diversity at public companies.

Prior to joining the GW Law faculty, Fairfax was a Professor of Law and Director of the Business Law Program at the University of Maryland School of Law. Before joining academia, she practiced corporate and securities law with Ropes & Gray LLP in Boston and Washington, D.C. She graduated with honors from Harvard College and earned her JD, with honors, at Harvard Law School.

Jasmine Harris

Jasmine E. Harris will teach Disability Law and Evidence, among other courses, at the Law School.

Previously, Harris was a Professor of Law and the Martin Luther King, Jr. Hall Research Scholar at the University of California-Davis School of Law. She specializes in disability law, antidiscrimination law, education law, civil rights law, and evidence. A law and equality scholar, Harris’ work on disability appears in leading law reviews and journals including the University of Pennsylvania Law Review, Columbia Law Review, New York University Law Review, Yale Law Journal Forum, and Cornell Law Review Online. She recently joined leading evidence scholars as a co-author of the preeminent evidence treatise, McCormick on Evidence.

Harris is a frequent media commentator on issues of disability law and policy for major media outlets such as National Public Radio, The New York Times, The Washington Post, TIME Magazine, USA Today, Forbes, and The Chronicle of Higher Education. Her opinion writing has appeared in The New York Times, The San Francisco Chronicle, Ms. Magazine, and the Tribune Wire, as well as in various academic and popular blogs.

Harris clerked for the late Harold Baer, Jr., United States District Judge for the Southern District of New York, and has worked in both private and public interest law. She practiced complex commercial litigation, securities, and government investigations as a Senior Associate with WilmerHale. She served as a staff attorney with the Advancement Project, where she built grassroots advocacy campaigns around racial injustice in education and juvenile matters.

Harris graduated magna cum laude from Dartmouth College with a bachelor’s degree in Latin American & Caribbean Studies and received her JD from Yale Law School.

Sandra Mayson

Sandra G. “Sandy” Mayson will teach Criminal Law, Evidence, and seminars on related topics.

Mayson’s scholarship explores intersections between criminal law, constitutional law, and legal theory, with a focus on the role of risk assessment and preventive restraint in the criminal justice system. Her scholarship has appeared in the Yale Law Journal, Stanford Law Review, Virginia Law Review, Duke Law Journal, Boston University Law Review, Boston College Law Review, Notre Dame Law Review, Georgia Law Review, and Criminal Law and Philosophy. Mayson is active in pretrial law reform. She has served as the Associate Reporter for the Uniform Law Commission’s Pretrial Release and Detention Act, co-authors amicus briefs in significant lawsuits challenging money-bail systems, and regularly advises public and private stakeholders on pretrial reform initiatives.

Mayson was previously Assistant Visiting Professor of Law at the Law School (2020-21) and Assistant Professor of Law at the University of Georgia School of Law, where she received the C. Ronald Ellington Award for Excellence in Teaching, the John C. O’Byrne Memorial Award for Significant Contributions Furthering Student-Faculty Relations, and designation as a Faculty Marshal. She began her academic career as a Furman Fellow at the New York University School of Law and a Research Fellow with the Quattrone Center for the Fair Administration of Justice at Penn.

Before entering academia, Mayson practiced as a trial attorney and Equal Justice Works Fellow at Orleans Public Defenders in New Orleans. She clerked for Judge Dolores K. Sloviter L’56 on the U.S. Third Circuit Court of Appeals and for U.S. District Court Judge L. Felipe Restrepo in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. Mayson received her BA in comparative literature summa cum laude from Yale University and her JD magna cum laude from New York University School of Law.

Jennifer E. Rothman

Jennifer E. Rothman joins the Law School as the Nicholas F. Gallicchio Professor of Law, where she will teach Trademarks, Introduction to Intellectual Property, Copyright, and First Amendment, as well as a seminar on the Right of Publicity.

Rothman is nationally recognized for her scholarship in the intellectual property and constitutional law fields and is a leading expert on the right of publicity. Her book, The Right of Publicity: Privacy Reimagined for a Public World, has been described in reviews as “indispensable” and the “definitive biography of the right of publicity.” Rothman’s essays and articles regularly appear in top law reviews and journals. Her forthcoming article, “Navigating the Identity Thicket: Trademark’s Lost Theory of Personality,” will be published in the Harvard Law Review and her most recent publication, “The First Amendment and the Right(s) of Publicity” appeared in the Yale Law Journal.

She also created “Rothman’s Roadmap to the Right of Publicity,” the go-to website for right-of-publicity laws and commentary.

Before coming to Penn, Rothman was the William G. Coskran Professor of Law at LMU Loyola Law School in Los Angeles. She is the 2019-2020 recipient of the David P. Leonard Faculty Service Award for outstanding teaching and service, an elected member of the American Law Institute (ALI), and an adviser on the Restatement of the Law (Third) of Torts: Defamation and Privacy project from ALI.

She is also an affiliated fellow at the Yale Information Society Project at Yale Law School. Rothman joined Loyola after serving on the faculty at the Washington University in St. Louis School of Law. She previously clerked for the Honorable Marsha S. Berzon of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in San Francisco and also worked in the film industry, including a position in feature production at Paramount Pictures and as an entertainment and intellectual property litigator in Los Angeles.

Rothman received her AB from Princeton University, where she earned the Asher Hinds Book Prize and the Grace May Tilton Prize. She also received an MFA in film production from the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts, where she directed an award-winning documentary. Rothman received her JD from UCLA, where she graduated first in her class and won the Jerry Pacht Memorial Constitutional Law Award for her scholarship in that field.

Legal Practice Skills Faculty

Sylvia Diaz L’ 08

Silvia Diaz received both her BA in Economics and English and her MA in English at Lehigh University. She then earned an MA in secondary education from Pace University and her JD from the University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School.

Diaz has worked for Goodwin Procter LLP and Wisler Pearlstine, LLP. Before joining the Law School, she used her years of legal experience as Senior Counsel at Pearson, Inc., where she advised on student rights, labor and employment matters, litigation, and data privacy compliance.

Matthew Duncan L’03

Before joining the Law School, Matthew Duncan’s practice focused on all aspects of complex litigation, class action, and antitrust. Duncan received his BS in Civil Engineering from Bucknell University and his JD from the Law School at Penn.

After clerking for the Honorable Anthony J. Scirica of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, he joined Fine, Kaplan and Black, R.P.C. in Philadelphia. He is an elected member of the American Law Institute and in 2014 received the American Antitrust Institute’s award for “Outstanding Antitrust Litigation Achievement by a Young Lawyer” for his role in Steel Antitrust Litigation. Duncan continues his pro bono work, representing children in Philadelphia family court proceedings. Prior to this appointment as a Senior Lecturer, he taught in the LPS program for the last three years as a Visiting Lecturer.

Karen Lindell

Karen U. Lindell received her BA in history at the University of Georgia and her JD from Vanderbilt University Law School. After clerking for Judge Kent A. Jordan on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit and Judge Eduardo C. Robreno on the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, Lindell joined the Juvenile Law Center as a Skadden Fellow.

She continued her work as Senior Attorney at the Juvenile Law Center after her fellowship, where she focused on assisting youths aged 14-21 transition smoothly from juvenile support services to long-term adult services.

Learn more about the prominent legal scholars and practitioners on our faculty.