Former United States Attorney, Geoffrey Berman, to Teach Federal Criminal Law at Stanford Law School

Berman Will Also Join Stanford Rock Center for Corporate Governance as Visiting Fellow

Former United States Attorney, Geoffrey Berman, to Teach Federal Criminal Law at Stanford Law School

July 15, 2020 –  Stanford, CA – Today, Stanford Law School announced that Geoffrey Berman, former United States (U.S.) Attorney for the Southern District of New York, will be teaching at Stanford Law School for the fall 2020 term. Berman, who received his J.D. degree from Stanford Law in 1984, will return to his alma mater as the Edwin A. Heafey Jr. Visiting Professor of Law. Drawing on his experience as the head federal prosecutor in one of the nation’s most important jurisdictions, he will teach an elective course titled “Prosecutorial Discretion and Ethical Duties in the Enforcement of Federal Criminal Law.”

“We are pleased to welcome back Geoffrey to Stanford Law,” said Richard E. Lang Professor of Law and Stanford Law School Dean, Jenny Martinez. “Many of our students will go on to careers in criminal law, public interest, and government work and Geoff’s presence on our campus is a unique opportunity for our students to learn from a well-respected and accomplished public servant and professional.”

Stanford Law School instilled within me and a great many of my peers a passion and respect for public service, and I am thrilled to be given the opportunity to return to share my experiences as a prosecutor with a new generation of students,” said Berman.  

Berman will also join the Rock Center for Corporate Governance at Stanford University as a Visiting Fellow. At the Rock Center, a joint initiative of Stanford Law School and Stanford Graduate School of Business dedicated to advancing the practice and understanding of corporate governance, Mr. Berman will contribute to research, programs and teaching in areas relevant to the Rock Center’s core audience of corporate board members, executives and Stanford students. 

While at Stanford Law School, Berman was Note Editor of the Stanford Law Review. After graduating, he clerked on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit for The Honorable Leonard I. Garth. From 1987-1990, Berman served as an Associate Counsel for the Office of Independent Counsel during the Iran-Contra hearings. From 1990-1994, Berman was an Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York and, from 2018-2020, the U.S. Attorney for the same district.   

Prosecutorial Discretion and Ethical Duties in the Enforcement of Federal Criminal Law Course

The course will examine the distinct roles and responsibilities of U.S. Attorneys in the enforcement of federal criminal laws and the ways in which a federal prosecutor exercises discretion in deciding whether or not to charge, what crimes to charge, and what punishments to seek. The course will examine charging both individuals and corporate entities in the context of the priorities and policies of different administrations as well as the prosecutor’s individual ethical obligations. 

About Stanford Law School

Stanford Law School is one of the nation’s leading institutions for legal scholarship and education. Its alumni are among the most influential decision makers in law, politics, business, and high technology. Faculty members argue before the Supreme Court, testify before Congress, produce outstanding legal scholarship and empirical analysis, and contribute regularly to the nation’s press as legal and policy experts. Stanford Law School has established a model for legal education that provides rigorous interdisciplinary training, hands-on experience, global perspective and focus on public service, spearheading a movement for change.