International Human Rights and Litigation Expert James Cavallaro Joins Stanford Law School Faculty

STANFORD, Calif., June 08, 2011—Stanford Law School today announced the appointment of international human rights law expert James Cavallaro as Professor of Law and director of the International Human Rights and Conflict Resolution Clinic of the Mills Legal Clinic. Cavallaro has extensive expertise in international human rights law and the human rights movement; human rights issues in Latin America and the developing world; and international human rights litigation, including litigation to promote economic, social and cultural rights. Prior to joining Stanford, Cavallaro held positions at Harvard Law School, most recently as clinical professor of law and executive director of the Human Rights Program there.

“Jim Cavallaro is one of the world’s most respected international human rights lawyers, as well as a prolific scholar and great teacher,” said Stanford Law School Dean Larry Kramer.  “Clinical education is a key part of the Stanford curriculum, and the Human Rights Clinic is central to our international program. With Jim at the helm, we can take both clinical and international teaching and research in new directions. There’s simply no one better.”

Cavallaro joins a truly path-breaking faculty who teach in the Mills Legal Clinic at Stanford Law School. Under the combined leadership of  Dean Larry Kramer and Professor Lawrence Marshall, associate dean for clinical education and David & Stephanie Mills Director of the Mills Legal Clinic, the law school has developed a clinical education program that is among the best and most innovative  in the country.

Stanford’s clinics expose students to a full range of legal practice models, including transactional work, policy work, and client advising, alongside trial and appellate litigation. The clinics operate in a wide array of substantive practice areas, from employment and housing disputes, to rights of immigrants, asylum seekers and victims of human trafficking; to juvenile justice and education law; to energy policy, natural resource conservation, and protection of endangered species and biodiversity; to entrepreneurship and sustainable enterprises, and contracts, transactions and corporate governance for nonprofit organizations; to prison reform, prisoners’ rights, Three Strikes sentencing appeals, and constitutional litigation;  to fair use and copyright claims; to protections of free speech and online privacy. Along with providing hands-on, supervised training for students, clinics enable students and faculty to provide pro bono legal services.

The International Human Rights and Conflict Resolution Clinic will allow students to advocate on behalf of, and provide supervised representation of, a broad range of victims and potential victims of rights abuse, including political detainees, other prisoners, victims of torture, and indigenous communities, among others.  The clinic will also engage students in structured conflict resolution, with a particular focus on societies emerging from periods of extreme violence.

“Not only have we endeavored to develop an extraordinary clinical education program in terms of pedagogy and breadth of course offerings,” said Professor Larry Marshall, “but we’re also trying to help reshape the model for how lawyers are educated.  Jim Cavallaro’s new clinic will enable us to provide fully supervised client advocacy training in an international legal practice setting.”

“I’m looking forward to launching the new clinic at Stanford Law School and to working with remarkable colleagues and clinic students,” said Professor James Cavallaro.

James Cavallaro received his BA from Harvard University and his JD from University of California at Berkeley School of Law, where he served on theCalifornia Law Review and graduated with Order of the Coif Honors.  Following law school, he served as a law clerk to Chief Judge Dolores K. Sloviter of the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit (1993-1994). Prior to teaching at Harvard Law School, Professor Cavallaro founded the Global Justice Center in 1999; it is now a leading Brazilian human rights non-governmental organization. In 1994, he opened a joint office for Human Rights Watch and the Center for Justice and International Law (CEJIL) in Rio de Janeiro, and served as director of the office, overseeing research, reporting and litigation against Brazil before the Inter-American system’s human rights bodies.  Early in his career, Cavallaro spent several years working with Central American refugees on the U.S.-Mexico border and with rights groups in Chile challenging abuses by the Pinochet government.  Among his recent scholarly works are: Reevaluating Regional Human Rights Litigation in the Twenty-First Century: the Case of the Inter-American Court (2008); Looking Backward to Address the Future?: Transitional Justice, Rising Crime and Nation-Building (2008); and Never Again?: The Legacy of the Argentine and Chilean Dictatorships for the Global Human Rights Regime (2008).

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 new model for legal education that provides rigorous interdisciplinary training, hands-on experience, global perspective and focus on public service, spearheading a movement for change.