Collaboration on Government Secrecy
American University Washington College of Law

November 18, 2009

Speaker Biographies


Since 1993, Danielle Brian has been the Executive Director of the Project on Government Oversight (POGO), a nonprofit government watchdog. She frequently testifies before Congress and appears in major national news outlets, including ABC, NBC, CBS, Fox News, Washington Post, New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, USA TODAY, and National Public Radio. Ms. Brian has led numerous investigations that have exposed wasteful government spending and helped precipitate policy reforms improving government programs. Under her watch, POGO prevailed in a lawsuit against then-Attorney General John Ashcroft for retroactively classifying FBI documents; forced the government to apply environmental standards to the super-secret Area 51 facility; forced the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to back down on its excessive secrecy regarding lax security at the Indian Point Nuclear Power Plant outside New York City; and has advocated for the rights of whistleblowers and other dissenters to have their voices heard. Before becoming executive director of POGO, Ms. Brian worked as a producer for television documentaries, as a policy analyst at the Arms Control and Foreign Policy Congressional Caucus, and as a research associate at POGO. Brian earned a master's degree in International Relations from the School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University in 1990.


Bobby Chesney is a national security law scholar, with a particular interest in problems associated with terrorism. He is a member of the Advisory Committee of the American Bar Association's Standing Committee on Law and National Security, a senior editor for the Journal of National Security Law & Policy, an associate member of the Intelligence Science Board, a term member of the Council on Foreign Relations, and a member of the American Law Institute. Professor Chesney has published extensively on topics ranging from detention and prosecution in the counterterrorism context to the states secrets privilege (testifying before the Senate Judiciary Committee regarding the latter). He has served previously as chair of the Section on National Security Law of the Association of American Law Schools and as editor of the National Security Law Report (published by the American Bar Association's Standing Committee on Law and National Security). His upcoming projects include a book (under contract with Oxford University Press) concerning the evolving judicial role in national security affairs. Professor Chesney recently served in the Justice Department in connection with the Detainee Policy Task Force created by Executive Order 13,493.


Laura Donohue is an Associate Professor of Law at Georgetown Law and a faculty affiliate of Georgetown's Center on National Security and the Law. She writes on the history of national security and counterterrorist law in the United States and the United Kingdom. Her most recent book, The Cost of Counterterrorism: Power, Politics, and Liberty (Cambridge University Press, April 2008), analyzes the impact of American and British counterterrorist law on life, liberty, property, privacy, and free speech. Professor Donohue has held fellowships at Stanford Law School's Center for Constitutional Law, Stanford University's Center for International Security and Cooperation, and Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government, where she was a Fellow in the International Security Program as well as in the Executive Session for Domestic Preparedness. In 2001, the Carnegie Corporation named her to its Scholars Program, funding the project Security and Freedom in the Face of Terrorism. She took up the award at Stanford, where she taught in the Departments of History and Political Science and directed a project for the United States Departments of Justice and State (and, later, Homeland Security) on mass-casualty terrorist incidents. During 2008–09 she clerked for Circuit Judge John T. Noonan of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Professor Donohue obtained her A.B. in Philosophy (with Honors) from Dartmouth College, her M.A. in Peace Studies (with Distinction) from the University of Ulster, Northern Ireland, her J.D. (with Distinction) from Stanford Law School, and her Ph.D. in History from the University of Cambridge, England. She is a Life Member of the Council on Foreign Relations.


Louis Fisher is Specialist in Constitutional Law with the Law Library of the Library of Congress, after working for the Congressional Research Service from 1970 to 2006. During his service with CRS, he was research director of the House Iran-Contra Committee in 1987, writing major sections of the final report. His books include President and Congress (1972), Presidential Spending Power (1975), The Constitution Between Friends (1978), The Politics of Shared Power (4th ed. 1998), Constitutional Conflicts Between Congress and the President (5th ed. 2007), Constitutional Dialogues (1988), American Constitutional Law (with Katy J. Harriger, 8th ed. 2009), Presidential War Power (2d ed. 2004), Political Dynamics of Constitutional Law (with Neal Devins, 4th ed. 2006), Congressional Abdication on War and Spending (2000), Religious Liberty in America: Political Safeguards (2002), Nazi Saboteurs on Trial: A Military Tribunal & American Law (2003; 2d ed. 2005), The Politics of Executive Privilege (2004), The Democratic Constitution (with Neal Devins, 2004), Military Tribunals and Presidential Power: American Revolution to the War on Terrorism (2005), In the Name of National Security: Unchecked Presidential Power and the Reynolds Case (2006), The Constitution and 9/11: Recurring Threats to America's Freedoms (2008), The Supreme Court and Congress: Rival Interpretations (2009), and On Appreciating Congress: The People's Branch (2010). His textbook in constitutional law is available in two paperbacks: Constitutional Structures: Separation of Powers and Federalism and Constitutional Rights: Civil Rights and Civil Liberties. With Leonard W. Levy he edited the four-volume Encyclopedia of the American Presidency (1994). He has twice won the Louis Brownlow Book Award (for Presidential Spending Power and Constitutional Dialogues), and the encyclopedia he co-edited was awarded the Dartmouth Medal. In 1995 he received the Aaron B. Wildavsky Award "For Lifetime Scholarly Achievement in Public Budgeting" from the Association for Budgeting and Financial Management. In 2006 he received the Neustadt Book Award for Military Tribunals and Presidential Power. He received his doctorate in political science from the New School for Social Research in 1967, and he has taught at Queens College, Georgetown University, American University, Catholic University, Indiana University, Johns Hopkins University, the College of William and Mary law school, and the Catholic University law school.

Dr. Fisher has been invited to testify before Congress on such issues as war powers, state secrets, NSA surveillance, executive spending discretion, presidential reorganization authority, Congress and the Constitution, the legislative veto, the item veto, the Gramm-Rudman-Hollings Act, executive privilege, executive lobbying, CIA whistleblowing, covert spending, the pocket veto, recess appointments, the budget process, the balanced budget amendment, biennial budgeting, and presidential impoundment powers. He has been active with CEELI (Central and East European Law Initiative) of the American Bar Association, traveling to Bulgaria, Albania, and Hungary to assist constitution-writers, participating in CEELI conferences in Washington, D.C. with delegations from Bosnia-Herzegovina, Lithuania, Romania, and Russia, serving on CEELI "working groups" on Armenia and Belarus, and assisting in constitutional amendments for the Kyrgyz Republic. As part of CRS delegations he traveled to Russia and Ukraine to assist on constitutional questions. For the International Bar Association, he helped analyze the draft Swaziland Constitution.

Dr. Fisher's specialties include constitutional law, war powers, budget policy, executive-legislative relations, and judicial-congressional relations. He is the author of more than 400 articles in law reviews, political science journals, encyclopedias, books, magazines, and newspapers. He has been invited to speak in Albania, Australia, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, China, the Czech Republic, England, France, Germany, Greece, Israel, Japan, Macedonia, Malaysia, Mexico, the Netherlands, Oman, the Philippines, Poland, Romania, Russia, Slovenia, South Korea, Taiwan, Ukraine, and the United Arab Emirates.


Sharon Bradford Franklin is Senior Counsel at The Constitution Project, an independent think tank that promotes and defends constitutional safeguards. She works principally with the Project's bipartisan Liberty and Security Committee, seeking to protect Americans' civil liberties as well as our nation's security post-September 11th. Previously, she served as a Trial Attorney in the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice; as a Special Counsel in the Office of General Counsel at the Federal Communications Commission; and as Executive Director of the Washington Council of Lawyers. She graduated from Harvard College and Yale Law School.


Amanda Frost joined the faculty of WCL in 2004. She specializes in the federal court system and federal jurisdiction, civil procedure, statutory interpretation, and transparency in government. Prior to coming to WCL, Professor Frost was a staff attorney for Public Citizen, where she litigated cases in the federal courts of appeals and the U.S. Supreme Court. Professor Frost clerked for Judge A. Raymond Randolph of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, and she has worked on the Senate Judiciary Committee. In the Fall of 2007, Professor Frost was a visiting professor at Harvard Law School.


Elizabeth (Liza) Goitein directs the Brennan Center's Liberty and National Security Project, which seeks to ensure that our government respects human rights and fundamental freedoms in conducting the fight against terrorism. Before coming to the Brennan Center, she served as counsel to Senator Russell Feingold, Chairman of the Constitution Subcommittee of the Senate Judiciary Committee. As counsel to Senator Feingold, she handled a variety of liberty and national security matters, with a particular focus on government secrecy and privacy rights. She also worked on matters involving immigration, juvenile justice, sentencing, and First Amendment issues. Previously, Liza was a trial attorney in the Federal Programs Branch of the Civil Division of the Department of Justice. She graduated from the Yale Law School in 1998 and clerked for the Honorable Michael Daly Hawkins on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.


Ken Gude is the Associate Director of the International Rights and Responsibility Program at the Center for American Progress (CAP). Prior to joining CAP, he was a policy analyst at the Center for National Security Studies, where he focused on post-September 11 civil liberties issues. He also had stints at the Council on Foreign Relations and with the British Labour Party in the U.K., where he served as a policy officer working the campaign against the privatization of British Rail. He has been published in the Los Angeles Times and contributed to the book, Protecting Democracy: International Responses.


Doug Letter earned a B.A. in American History from Columbia University in 1975, and a J.D. from the University of California -- Berkeley, Boalt Hall in 1978. He joined the Department of Justice's Civil Division under the Attorney General's Honors Program in 1978, was selected to serve on an Assistant Attorney General's advisory committee of young Civil Division attorneys in 1979, and entered the Senior Executive Service in 1992. During 1994-95, Doug served in the White House as an Associate Counsel to the President. In addition, in 1999, he was a Deputy Associate Attorney General. He is now Appellate Litigation Counsel in the Civil Division at the Department of Justice and also was appointed in March 2002 as the Terrorism Litigation Counsel.

Doug has represented the United States in courts around the United States in numerous significant cases. He has presented oral argument for the Federal Government in the Supreme Court and in all of the federal courts of appeals, as well as in various district courts, and he will be presenting an en banc oral argument before the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in the state secrets case of Mohamed v. Jeppesen Dataplan next month. His primary areas of expertise are antiterrorism, separation of powers and Presidential authority, national security and foreign affairs litigation, constitutional takings issues, First Amendment free speech claims, administrative law, False Claims Act enforcement, and criminal and civil enforcement of the consumer protection laws.

In 1987, Doug was appointed by the D.C. Circuit to its Advisory Committee on Procedures, and he acted for six years as the Chairman of that committee. He currently serves as the Department of Justice representative on the Judicial Conference's federal Advisory Committee on Appellate Rules. In June 2000, he was elected to the D.C. Bar Board of Governors, and was reelected in 2003. The Attorney General presented him with the John Marshall Award for Appellate Advocacy in 1988, and he received another Marshall Award in 2004 for his work in successfully defending the Bipartisan Campaign Finance Reform Act. He also was given the Younger Federal Lawyer Award by the Federal Bar Association in 1984, and he received the Justice Tom C. Clark Public Service Award in 2007. He also earned a Presidential Meritorious Rank Award in 2003. Doug has spoken and lectured extensively, both within and outside the government, on appellate advocacy and on the role of the government lawyer. He currently teaches a course on national security law as an adjunct professor at George Washington University Law School.


Dan Marcus joined the faculty of WCL in 2004. Previously, he was General Counsel of the 9-11 Commission. He was for many years a partner in the Washington law firm of Wilmer, Cutler & Pickering. During the Carter Administration, he was Deputy General Counsel of the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, and General Counsel of the Department of Agriculture. He returned to government service in 1998 as Senior Counsel in the White House Counsel's Office. From 1999 to 2001, he held several senior positions at the Department of Justice, including Associate Attorney General. He has also been a Visiting Professor at Georgetown University Law Center. He was a law clerk for Judge Harold Leventhal of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit.


Dan Metcalfe joined the faculty of the Washington College of Law in 2007 as a Faculty Fellow in Law and Government upon retiring from a career in government service that began at the Department of Justice in 1971. He now is both an adjunct professor at WCL and Executive Director of the school's Collaboration on Government Secrecy. A 1976 honors graduate of the National Law Center at George Washington University, where he was a law review editor and attended on a full academic scholarship, he worked at the Justice Department as both a teenage intern during college and a law clerk in the Office of the Attorney General during law school. In 1981, after a judicial clerkship and serving as a Justice Department trial attorney, he was appointed to the position of founding director of the Department's Office of Information and Privacy (OIP), one of the forty components of the Department. For more than a quarter-century in that position, he guided all federal agencies on the governmentwide administration of the Freedom of Information Act, directly supervised the defense of more than 500 FOIA and Privacy Act lawsuits in district and appellate courts, testified before Congress on FOIA legislation, and met with representatives of nearly 100 nations and international governing bodies as they considered the development and implementation of their own government transparency laws. He became a career member of the Senior Executive Service in 1984, the youngest Justice Department attorney then and since to hold such a position, and he also has been appointed as an Honorary Senior Research Fellow at University College London. He currently is writing a textbook on secrecy law together with WCL Professor Stephen I. Vladeck for publication by Carolina Academic Press and is the author of several publications, most recently The Nature of Government Secrecy, 26 Gov't Info. Quarterly 305 (2009), and Sunshine Not So Bright: FOIA Implementation Lags Behind, 34 Admin. & Reg. L. News 5 (Summer 2009).


Sean Moulton is Director of Information Policy at OMB Watch, where he focuses on increasing government transparency with special attention to environmental information and right-to-know issues. One of his first jobs was as Environmental Researcher and Data Manager for the Council on Economic Priorities (CEP), manipulating and analyzing environmental information that is disseminated under the policies he now advocates. Prior to joining OMB Watch, Sean honed his lobbying and policy analysis skills as the Tax Policy Analyst at Friends of the Earth. His work experience also includes several years as a research fellow with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in the Industry Sector Policy Division. Recent priority work at OMB Watch for Sean has included coordinating nationwide opposition to EPA's cutbacks to the Toxic Release Inventory and overseeing the development of, a groundbreaking new Web site that allows users to easily search and browse trillions of dollars in federal spending. For years, OMB Watch has also operated the Right to Know Network (RTK NET), a Web site that provides public access to almost a dozen environmental databases. Sean will be helping to bring lessons learned from to a redesign of the environmental database functions on RTK NET. He received a Masters of Public Policy degree from the University of Maryland and has a B.A. in Economics and English.


Congressman Jerrold Nadler represents New York's Eighth Congressional District, one of the most diverse districts in the nation, which includes Manhattan's West Side below 89th Street, Lower Manhattan, and areas of Brooklyn such as Borough Park, Coney Island, Brighton Beach, Sea Gate, Bay Ridge, and Bensonhurst. Congressman Nadler was first elected to the House of Representatives in 1992 after serving for sixteen years in the New York State Assembly. Throughout his career, he has championed civil rights, civil liberties, efficient transportation, and a host of progressive issues such as access to health care, support for the arts, and protection of the Social Security system. He is considered an unapologetic defender of those who might otherwise be forgotten by American law or the economy, and he is respected specifically for his creative and pragmatic legislative approaches.

In his roles as an Assistant Whip and a senior member of both the House Judiciary Committee and the House Transportation Committee, Congressman Nadler has the opportunity on a daily basis to craft and shape the major laws that govern our country. As Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee's Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties, he has introduced and advanced legislation aimed at reforming the state secrets privilege. From his leadership in response to the September 11th terrorist attacks on his district, to his insight and policymaking prominence on issues facing Israel and the Middle East, Congressman Nadler has constantly sought to be steadfast and responsive in his service to New York and the nation.


From March 2005 until January 2009, Carl Nichols worked as a political appointee at the United States Department of Justice, first as the Deputy Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Division's Federal Programs Branch and then as the Justice Department's Principal Deputy Associate Attorney General. Prior to joining the Justice Department, he was a partner at Boies, Schiller & Flexner, where he litigated complex commercial cases at the trial and appellate levels, with an emphasis on class actions, antitrust, and international arbitrations. As the Principal Deputy Associate Attorney General, he advised the Associate Attorney General, the Deputy Attorney General, and the Attorney General on a wide range of legislative, regulatory, policy, and litigation matters; assisted the Associate Attorney General in overseeing thirteen Justice Department components with approximately 2000 lawyers, including five litigating divisions (Antitrust, Civil, Civil Rights, Environment and Natural Resources, and Tax) and the Office of Information and Privacy (OIP); participated actively in the litigation of the United States' most important and high-profile civil cases, including those involving the invocation of the state secrets privilege; and presented congressional testimony on the subject of the state secrets privilege in 2008. During his Justice Department tenure, he also served as the government's lead counsel in a number of landmark lawsuits, including the House Judiciary Committee's lawsuit seeking to enforce subpoenas issued to senior White House officials (House Judiciary Comm. v. Miers), various suits filed against telecommunications companies following public disclosure of the initial form of the Terrorist Surveillance Program (In re Nat'l Security Agency Telecommunications Records Litig.), and several suits filed by the federal government to enjoin state investigations into alleged activities of the National Security Agency.

Mr. Nichols received his law degree from the University of Chicago Law School in 1996 (with high honors), and his B.A. from Dartmouth College in 1992 (with high honors in Philosophy). Following law school, he clerked for Circuit Judge Laurence H. Silberman of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit and Associate Justice Clarence Thomas of the Supreme Court of the United States. After spending the first six months of 2009 in Argentina with his wife and three children, Mr. Nichols now lives in Washington, D.C.


Kent Roach is a Professor of Law at the University of Toronto, where he holds the Prichard-Wilson Chair in Law and Public Policy. He is a graduate of the University of Toronto and Yale and a former law clerk to Justice Bertha Wilson of the Supreme Court of Canada. His books include Constitutional Remedies in Canada (winner of the 1997 Owen Prize for best law book), Due Process and Victims' Rights: The New Law and Politics of Criminal Justice (short-listed for the 1999 Donner Prize for best public policy book), The Supreme Court on Trial: Judicial Activism or Democratic Dialogue (short-listed for the 2001 Donner Prize), September 11: Consequences for Canada (named one of the five most significant books of 2003 by the Literary Review of Canada) and (with Robert J. Sharpe) Brian Dickson: A Judge's Journey (winner of the 2004 J.W. Dafoe Prize for best contribution to the understanding of Canada). Professor Roach's most recent books are Criminal Law 4th and (with Robert J. Sharpe) The Charter of Rights and Freedoms 4th edition, both published in 2009.

Since 1998, Professor Roach has been editor-in-chief of the Criminal Law Quarterly. He has appeared as counsel before the Supreme Court of Canada, including in landmark cases such as Latimer, Stillman, and Sauve. Much of his current research is devoted to the study of comparative anti-terrorism law, and his work on that subject has been published in Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, India, Singapore, South Africa, the United Kingdom, and the United States. He served on the research advisory committee of the Commission of Inquiry into the Activities of Canadian Officials in Relation to Maher Arar and as research director (legal studies) to the Inquiry into the Bombing of Air India Flight 182. He has also testified before Canadian Parliamentary and American congressional committees on terrorism related subjects.


Heather Sawyer is majority counsel for the House Committee on the Judiciary's Subcommittee on Constitution, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties, chaired by Congressman Jerrold Nadler, where her recent work has focused on many of the key national security and civil rights issues that have arisen in the wake of the September 11 terrorist attacks -- including extraordinary rendition, torture, military commissions, and the state secrets privilege. She is lead Judiciary Committee counsel on Chairman Nadler's State Secret Protection Act (H.R. 984 in the 111th Congress; approved by the House Judiciary Committee on Nov. 5, 2009), and she was lead Judiciary Committee counsel for the ADA Amendments Act of 2008 and the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009. Before joining the House Judiciary Committee staff in 2007, she was a visiting professor at Georgetown University Law Center from 2005-2007 and served as Senior Counsel for Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund from 1996-2005. A graduate of Dartmouth College and the University of Chicago Law School, she has received awards for her civil rights work from the ACLU of Illinois, the AIDS Foundation of Chicago, the AIDS Legal Council of Chicago, The Names Project Foundation, and the Howard Brown Health Center. Heather Sawyer is majority counsel for the House Committee on the Judiciary's Subcommittee on Constitution, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties, chaired by Congressman Jerrold Nadler, where her recent work has focused on many of the key national security and civil rights issues that have arisen in the wake of the September 11 terrorist attacks -- including extraordinary rendition, torture, military commissions, and the state secrets privilege. She is lead Judiciary Committee counsel on Chairman Nadler's State Secret Protection Act (H.R. 984 in the 111th Congress; approved by the House Judiciary Committee on Nov. 5, 2009), and she was lead Judiciary Committee counsel for the ADA Amendments Act of 2008 and the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009. Before joining the House Judiciary Committee staff in 2007, she was a visiting professor at Georgetown University Law Center from 2005-2007 and served as Senior Counsel for Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund from 1996-2005. A graduate of Dartmouth College and the University of Chicago Law School, she has received awards for her civil rights work from the ACLU of Illinois, the AIDS Foundation of Chicago, the AIDS Legal Council of Chicago, The Names Project Foundation, and the Howard Brown Health Center. November 18, 2009.


Don Verrilli serves as Associate Deputy Attorney General in the Department of Justice, where he is the Department's key official for the development of policies and procedures on the invocation of the state secrets privilege. Before joining the Justice Department in February 2009, he was Chair of the Appellate & Supreme Court Practice area at Jenner & Block and was a longtime member of its governing Policy Committee. He has argued numerous cases before the U.S. Supreme Court, including Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios, Inc. v. Grokster, Ltd., where he successfully argued that companies that build businesses on the illegal distribution of copyrighted material are liable for copyright infringement. He also successfully argued General Dynamics Land Systems v. Cline, a case in which the Court ruled that the Age Discrimination in Employment Act does not authorize "reverse discrimination" suits; FCC v. Next Wave Personal Communications, a case in which the Court returned to NextWave billions of dollars worth of wireless phone spectrum licenses that the FCC had sought to repossess from NextWave while it was in bankruptcy; and Verizon Communications v. FCC, the most important case arising out of the Telecommunications Act of 1996. Mr. Verrilli also has argued numerous cases before state and federal appellate courts throughout the country.

Mr. Verrilli has been repeatedly recognized by Chambers, Best Lawyers, and Super Lawyers as among the top attorneys in the country and he also has maintained an active pro bono practice throughout his career. In 2006, he was honored for his contributions to the equal justice community with the Equal Justice Award from the Southern Center for Human Rights, and in 2004 he received the Arthur von Briesen Award from the National Legal Aid and Defender Association for his volunteer contributions to the equal justice community. Mr. Verrilli received his J.D. with honors from Columbia University in 1983, where he was a James Kent Scholar and served as editor-in-chief of the Columbia Law Review. He received his B.A. cum laude with a Distinction in History from Yale University in 1979. He clerked for Associate Justice William J. Brennan, Jr., of the U.S. Supreme Court and Judge J. Skelly Wright of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.


Steve Vladeck is a Professor of Law at WCL, where his dynamic teaching and research focus on federal jurisdiction, national security law, constitutional law (especially the separation of powers), and international criminal law. A nationally recognized expert on the role of the federal courts in the war on terrorism, he was part of the legal team that successfully challenged the Bush Administration's use of military tribunals at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, in Hamdan v. Rumsfeld, 548 U.S. 557 (2006), and has co-authored amicus briefs in a host of other lawsuits challenging the U.S. government's surveillance and detention of terrorism suspects. He has also drafted reports on related issues for a number of organizations, including the First Amendment Center, the Constitution Project, and the ABA's Standing Committee on Law and National Security, and he is a senior editor of the peer-reviewed Journal of National Security Law and Policy.

Steve graduated from Yale Law School in 2004, after which he clerked for the Honorable Marsha S. Berzon on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, and the Honorable Rosemary Barkett on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit. While a law student, he was Executive Editor of the Yale Law Journal and also the Student Director of the Balancing Civil Liberties and National Security Post-9/11 Litigation Project, and he was awarded the Potter Stewart Prize for Best Team Performance in Moot Court and the Harlan Fiske Stone Prize for Outstanding Moot Court Oralist. He earned his B.A. summa cum laude in History and Mathematics from Amherst College in 2001, where he wrote his senior thesis on "Leipzig's Shadow: The War Crimes Trials of the First World War and Their Implications from Nuremberg to the Present."

Among other ongoing projects, Professor Vladeck currently is writing a textbook on secrecy law with Professor Metcalfe for Carolina Academic Press; he is a regular contributor to PrawfsBlawg, and National Security Advisors; and he is the Chair-Elect of the Association of American Law Schools' Sections on National Security Law and on New Law Professors. He is admitted to practice law in the State of New York, Third Department.


Ben Wizner has been a staff attorney at the ACLU since 2001, specializing in national security, human rights, and first amendment issues. He has litigated several post-9/11 civil liberties cases in which the government has invoked the state secrets privilege, including El-Masri v. United States (a challenge to the CIA's abduction, detention, and torture of an innocent German citizen); Mohamed v. Jeppesen Dataplan, Inc. (a suit against a private aviation services company for facilitating the CIA's rendition to torture of five Muslim men); and Edmonds v. Department of Justice (a whistleblower retaliation suit on behalf of an FBI translator fired for reporting serious misconduct). Ben was a law clerk to the Honorable Stephen Reinhardt of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and will be presenting an en banc oral argument before that court in Jeppesen next month. He is a graduate of Harvard College and New York University School of Law.


Bill Yeomans joined the faculty at WCL in 2009. From 2006 until 2009, he served as Senator Edward M. Kennedy's Chief Counsel on the Senate Judiciary Committee. He also has been Legal Director of the Alliance for Justice and the first Director of Programs for the American Constitution Society, where he spearheaded the launch of its two publications: the Harvard Law and Policy Review and Advance. Prior to that, he spent twenty-six years at the Department of Justice, where he litigated and supervised civil rights cases in the federal courts involving voting rights, school desegregation, discrimination, housing discrimination, hate crimes, police misconduct, abortion clinic violence, and human trafficking. He served as Deputy Assistant Attorney General, Chief of Staff, and Acting Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights. November 18, 2009.

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