Michelle J. Anderson

For the past decade, President Anderson has led the CUNY School of Law as a dean, overseeing a period of great renewal and transformation in development, facilities, programs, and recognition. Under Anderson’s tenure, CUNY Law strengthened its public interest mission, increased its academic standards, and obtained prestigious rankings that include: PreLaw Magazine’s “Best Public Interest Law School,” U.S. News & World Report’s top ten for “Best Clinical Training,” Princeton Review’s “Best Law Professors” and “Most Diverse Faculty.” In addition, CUNY Law launched a number of groundbreaking initiatives, including the Pipeline to Justice Program, Incubator Program, Community & Economic Development Clinic, and Center for Urban Environmental Reform, Center on Latino and Latina Rights & Equality, and Sorensen Center for International Peace and Justice.

Anderson was a member of the New York City Bar Association’s Task Force on New Lawyers in a Changing Profession, and has written about the importance of matching underemployed attorneys with low and moderate-income communities that have great need for affordable legal services. She is an adviser to the American Law Institute’s project to reform the Model Penal Code on sexual offenses and a consultant to its campus sexual misconduct project. Her research has been published in the Yale Law Journal, Boston University Law Review, George Washington Law Review, Hastings Law Journal, Rutgers Law Review, Southern California Law Review, and the University of Illinois Law Review, among others.

Prior to joining the CUNY School of Law, Anderson was a member of the Villanova University School of Law faculty. She holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of California, Santa Cruz, where she earned the Chancellor’s Award for outstanding academic achievement, and a J.D. from Yale Law School, where she was Notes Editor of the Yale Law Journal. Following law school, Dean Anderson clerked on the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit for Judge William A. Norris. She then worked at Georgetown University Law Center in the Appellate Litigation Program and Institute for Public Representation, where she earned an LL.M. in Advocacy.

Anderson is the recipient of numerous honors, including the New York City Bar Association’s “Diversity and Inclusion Champion Award” (2014) for her critical role in initiating and sustaining change within the CUNY School of Law and the New York legal community. She has also been honored by the Feminist Press with the “Susan Rosenberg Zalk Award” and by the Center for Women in Government and Civil Society at the University of Albany, with a “Public Service Leadership Award.”

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