Three extraordinary young scholars will join the University of Chicago Law School faculty as Assistant Professors of Law this July, marking a banner year in hiring and continuing the school’s strong tradition of landing the most promising entry-level candidates on the market.
The soon-to-be tenure-track faculty bring diverse interests and strong experience: John Rappaport, a rising star in criminal law and procedure who has clerked for US Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, and Genevieve Lakier, a former federal appellate clerk whose research focuses on the intersection between culture and law, are both finishing two-year engagements as Bigelow Teaching Fellows; Daniel Hemel, whose interests include taxation and administrative law, studied financial regulation as a Marshall Scholar at Oxford University and is currently clerking for US Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan.
“We are extraordinarily delighted to welcome Genevieve, John, and Daniel — three brilliant young scholars whose intellect, values, and energy are a wonderful fit for our faculty,” said Dean Michael H. Schill, Harry N. Wyatt Professor of Law. “This has been an incredibly productive year for our Faculty Appointments Committee co-chaired by Professors Daniel Abebe and Tom Miles, and we are immensely grateful for their hard work.”
Added Deputy Dean Tom Ginsburg, the Leo Spitz Professor of International Law: “I’m confident that these three will allow us to continue our tradition of launching superstars.”
Lakier, who earned a PhD in Anthropology from UChicago in 2014, brings what Ginsburg called a “distinctive perspective on the law.”
“Few scholars in American law schools have this kind of training, so she helps advance our goal of diversifying our set of methodological approaches,” Ginsburg said. “We’re really excited about her trajectory.”
Lakier has been working on two long-term projects: one exploring the cultural history of the First Amendment concept of speech, and the other exploring the changing role of the state in the regulation of sexuality and sex work.
Professor Daniel Abebe, Walter Mander Teaching Scholar and the chair of the entry-level Appointments Committee, called Lakier “a fantastic hire for the Law School.”
“We have been working hard to find an interdisciplinary scholar and teacher of constitutional law and, in Genevieve, we have found someone with both a great command of First Amendment doctrine and an excellent understanding of qualitative research methodologies. Genevieve’s unique skill set will hugely benefit our students in the classroom, and we are very happy to have her as a colleague."
Lakier earned her bachelor’s degree in Anthropology from Princeton University in 1997 and a master’s degree in Cultural Anthropology from UChicago in 2001. In 2011, she graduated from the New York University School of Law, where she was editor-in-chief of the NYU Review of Law & Social Change.
After law school, she clerked for judges Leonard B. Sand of the Southern District of New York and Martha Craig Daughtrey of the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals.
“I am thrilled to be joining such an intense and exciting intellectual community on a more permanent basis, and to continue to get to teach Chicago’s wonderful students,” Lakier said.
Hemel, whose research interests focus on the taxation and regulation of risk, has been praised by Law School faculty for his scholarship and deep intellect.
“Daniel is a brilliant addition to our faculty,” said Richard McAdams, the Bernard D. Meltzer Professor of Law and co-chair of the appointments committee that hired Hemel, who accepted his offer last year. “He has a wonderful curiosity and intellectual energy.”
Added co-chair Lee Fennell, the Max Pam Professor of Law: “Daniel is a tremendously innovative scholar with unlimited potential, and his broad range of interests and deep engagement with ideas make him a perfect fit for Chicago. We are excited to have him joining us.”
Hemel, whose teaching interests focus on tax and administrative law, is a 2012 graduate of Yale Law School, where he was editor-in-chief of the Yale Law Journal. As a law student, “this brilliant young scholar produced more papers than many faculty do before tenure,” Ginsburg said.
Hemel graduated from Harvard in 2007 with a bachelor’s degree in Social Sciences and earned a master’s degree in International Relations from Oxford in 2009. Before clerking for Justice Kagan, he also clerked for Judge Michael Boudin of the First Circuit Court of Appeals in Boston and Judge Sri Srinivasan of the District of Columbia Circuit Court of Appeals.
"I've been extraordinarily impressed by the creativity and engagement of the UChicago faculty and students,” Hemel said. “I can't imagine a more exciting intellectual environment."
Rappaport “brings a terrific background in practice and scholarship, and is going to be a major scholar of criminal law and procedure,” Ginsburg said. And Rappaport, like Lakier, has been a “terrific teacher for our students,” Schill said.
Abebe noted that the Law School had been hoping for some time to hire a teacher and scholar of criminal law and procedure.
“In John, we have found exactly what we’ve been looking for,” Abebe said. “John’s great combination of real world practice experience, outstanding clerkships, and a deep interest in the operation of the criminal justice system will make him a tremendous asset to our students. We are thrilled to welcome John to the faculty, and we are very excited to have him as a colleague as well.”
Rappaport graduated magna cum laude from Harvard Law School, where he served as co-chair of the Articles Committee of the Harvard Law Review. In addition to his Supreme Court clerkship, Rappaport has clerked for Judges Stephen Reinhardt and Paul Watford of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.
Rappaport has also worked as a litigator in private practice and in the Capital Habeas Unit of the Los Angeles Federal Public Defender’s office. He earned his undergraduate degree in mathematics, graduating with distinction from Stanford University.
“In two years as a Bigelow Fellow, I've grown so much,” Rappaport said. “I feel truly fortunate to have the opportunity to stick around and keep learning.”