Our Public Interest Scholars work closely with faculty and staff at Penn Law to bring the theory and practice of public interest law together. Our faculty advisors have a depth and breadth of experience and expertise that enables them to mentor and support our scholars. Scholars engage with our faculty advisors, both formally and informally, throughout their time at Penn Law.
Our Faculty Advisors:
Sarah Paoletti - Practice Associate Professor of Law
Sarah Paoletti directs the Transnational Legal Clinic, the law school’s international human rights and immigration clinic. Students enrolled in the clinic represent individual and organizational clients in a myriad of cases and projects that require them to grapple with international and comparative legal norms in settings that cut across borders, legal systems, cultures, and languages. Paoletti’s research focuses on the intersection of human rights, migration, and labor law, and she has presented on this theme before the United Nations and the Organization of American States. She also works closely with advocates seeking application of international human rights norms in the United States. Her recent scholarship includes: “Transnational Approaches to Transnational Exploitation: A Proposal for Bi-National Migrant Rights Clinics,” 30 University of Pennsylvania Journal of International Law 1171 (Summer 2009), and “Redefining Human Rights Lawyering Through the Lens of Critical Theory: Lessons for Pedagogy and Practice,” 18 Georgetown Journal of Poverty Law & Policy 337 (2011) (co-author).
Sarah’s full profile can be found at https://www.law.upenn.edu/cf/faculty/paoletti/.
Wendell Pritchett - Presidential Professor of Law and Education
On July 1, 2014 Wendell Pritchett officially began his tenure as Interim Dean of the Law School and as a Presidential Professor at Penn. A Penn Law professor from 2001-09, Pritchett most recently served as Chancellor of Rutgers-Camden from 2009-14, and in 2008 served as Deputy Chief of Staff and Director of Policy for Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter, who also appointed him to the School Reform Commission, where he served from 2011-14. He has written two books, and his research examines the development of post-war urban policy, in particular urban renewal, housing finance and housing discrimination. Pritchett has specialized in real estate and housing law, representing nonprofit organizations involved in the development of affordable housing.
Pritchett, who holds a Ph.D. in history from Penn and is an award-winning urban historian, earned his law degree at Yale. He has held numerous leadership positions in nonprofit and government service, in addition to pursuing a distinguished academic career.
Wendell’s full profile can be found at https://www.law.upenn.edu/cf/faculty/pritchet/
David Rudovsky – Senior Fellow
David Rudovsky, one of the nation’s leading civil rights and criminal defense attorneys, practices public interest law with the firm of Kairys, Rudovsky, Messing & Feinberg. He became a Senior Fellow at Penn Law in 1988 and teaches courses in Criminal Law, Constitutional Criminal Procedure and Evidence. He is co-author (with Michael Avery and Karen Blum) of Police Misconduct: Law and Litigation (West, 2012, 3rd ed.) and The Law of Arrest, Search, and Seizure in Pennsylvania (6th ed. 2011, PBI Press).
In the classroom Rudovsky integrates doctrine and practice to give his students a comprehensive understanding of legal principles and their role and application in the courts. His awards include a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship and Award for Accomplishments in Civil Rights Law and Criminal Justice, the ACLU Civil Liberties Award, and most recently his fifth Harvey Levin Award for Excellence in Teaching at the Law School. He also won a University of Pennsylvania Lindback Award for Teaching Excellence in 1996.
David’s full profile can be found at https://www.law.upenn.edu/cf/faculty/drudovsk/.
Louis Rulli - Practice Professor of Law and Clinical Director
Louis Rulli possesses expertise in public interest law, legislation, litigation, and clinical legal education, and has written and lectured extensively on access to justice for the poor. In 2006, he received the university-wide Provost’s Award for Distinguished Teaching. Prior to joining the Penn Law faculty, Rulli was the executive director of Community Legal Services in Philadelphia. He is a past chairman of the Philadelphia Bar Association’s Commission on Judicial Selection and Retention and a member of the Pennsylvania Bar Association’s House of Delegates. As the Philadelphia Bar Association’s first Advisor to the Cabinet for Pro Bono and Delivery of Legal Services issues, he also sits on the Board of Governors of the Philadelphia Bar Association. He serves on Pennsylvania’s Judicial Ethics Ad Hoc Committee and is a member of the governance boards of Philadelphia Legal Assistance, Community Legal Services, and Friends of Farmworkers.
Rulli is only the second person to receive the Pennsylvania Bar Foundation’s Lifetime Achievement Award, presented to an individual who has demonstrated substantial leadership in the creation and continuation of pro bono programs.
Louis’ full profile can be found at https://www.law.upenn.edu/cf/faculty/lrulli/.