Sozi Tulante, the current City Solicitor of Philadelphia, will join the University of Pennsylvania Law School next month, where he will teach an upper-level course on prosecutorial ethics and will work to evaluate and expand the Law School’s student externship opportunities, particularly in the areas of federal, state, and local government.
Tulante, who announced will leave his post as City Solicitor on March 9, will also advise students and student groups on issues such as pathways to government and public service, diversity in the legal profession, and immigration law and policy. He will also have a role in some programs at Perry World House.
“We are very excited to welcome Sozi Tulante to Penn Law,” said Ted Ruger, Dean of the Law School and Bernard G. Segal Professor of Law. “With his impressive experience as a lawyer in both local and federal government, he will be an exceptional mentor and guide for our students pursuing careers in public service.”
As City Solicitor, Tulante has led Philadelphia’s Law Department for two years. During his tenure, he expanded the number of attorneys who represent abused and neglected children in the Department’s Child Welfare Unit, promoted diversity in hiring, and spearheaded the Department’s affirmative litigation practice, which filed major cases concerning discriminatory lending practices in the banking industry, as well as against the U.S. Department of Defense for failing to report information necessary for local law enforcement to keep guns from the hands of people who have military convictions or have been dishonorably discharged. He also successfully sued the Department of Justice to challenge its efforts to withhold critical federal funds based on Philadelphia’s status as a “sanctuary city.”
“I want to thank Dean Ruger for warmly welcoming me to the Penn Law community,” said Tulante. “I look forward to engaging with the students and advising them as they consider public service opportunities, and of course to continue teaching and learning from them.”
Prior to becoming City Solicitor, Tulante spent five years as an Assistant U.S. Attorney at the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Philadelphia, where he worked on narcotics and white-collar criminal investigations and prosecutions. Before joining government service, he was a partner at Hangley Aronchick Segal Pudlin & Schiller, an associate at Goodwin Procter in Boston, and a law clerk for the late Honorable Reginald C. Lindsay of the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts.
Tulante was born in Zaire (now the Democratic Republic of Congo). In 1983, his family came to Philadelphia as political refugees, and he learned English in Philadelphia’s public schools. In 1997, he received his A.B. cum laude from Harvard College, where he was the recipient of a John Harvard Scholarship. He graduated cum laude from Harvard Law School in 2001.
Penn Law traces its history to 1790 when James Wilson, a signer of the Declaration of Independence, framer of the Constitution, and member of the first U.S. Supreme Court, delivered the University of Pennsylvania’s first lectures in law to President George Washington and members of his Cabinet. Today the hallmarks of the Penn Law experience are a cross-disciplinary, globally-focused legal education, and vibrant intellectual community. Penn Law prepares graduates to navigate an increasingly complex world as leaders and influential decision-makers in the law and related fields.