President Biden Appoints Law Dean to Supreme Court History Committee

March 9, 2023
Dean Risa Goluboff smiling at the camera

Dean Risa Goluboff, a legal historian, has been appointed to serve an eight-year term on the U.S. Supreme Court History Committee. (Photo by Julia Davis, UVA School of Law)

Dean Risa Goluboff of the University of Virginia School of Law has been appointed to a federal committee that documents the history of the U.S. Supreme Court.

President Joe Biden announced Goluboff’s appointment to the Permanent Committee for the Oliver Wendell Holmes Devise on March 3.

According to a White House news release, the committee, within the Library of Congress, was established by Congress in 1955 after Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr. bequeathed a portion of his estate to the United States in 1935. Congress used the gift to establish the committee, which is charged with documenting and disseminating the history of the court, published in a series of volumes.

Comprising the librarian of Congress and four additional members appointed by the president for an eight-year term, the committee has published 11 volumes as of January 2022. UVA Law professor G. Edward White has also served as a member on the committee and co-wrote the third and fourth volumes, “The Marshall Court and Cultural Change, 1815-35.”

“This is a wonderful honor to accept. Many historians I admire have worked on the project and I look forward to helping to document the history of the Supreme Court through this important work,” Goluboff said.

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Goluboff is the 12th, and the first female dean of the UVA Law School. A renowned legal historian, her scholarship and teaching focuses on American constitutional and civil rights law, especially their historical development in the 20th century. She is the Arnold H. Leon Professor of Law and a professor of history at UVA.

Goluboff is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the American Law Institute. She clerked for Supreme Court Justice Stephen G. Breyer and Judge Guido Calabresi of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. She earned her doctorate and Master of Arts in history from Princeton University, her law degree from Yale and her undergraduate degree from Harvard University.

Goluboff hosts “Common Law,” a UVA Law School podcast.

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