I am delighted to welcome Professor Janai S. Nelson who will be blogging with us this month. Janai is an Associate Professor of Law and the Associate Director of the Ronald H. Brown Center for Civil Rights and Economic Development at St. John’s University School of Law. Janai’s scholarship focuses on structural barriers to democratic participation, including voting rights issues, democratic theory, racial discrimination and disparate impact. Her recent research explores the intersection of the First Amendment and equal protection clause in reconsidering the constitutionality of felon disfranchisement. She teaches election law, comparative election law, and professional responsibility and, in addition to the Ronald H. Brown Center, is affiliated with St. John’s Center for International and Comparative Law.
Before joining St. John’s, Janai was a Fulbright Scholar at the Legal Resources Center in Accra, Ghana, where she researched the political disfranchisement of persons with criminal convictions. Prior to receiving the Fulbright award, Professor Nelson was the Director of Political Participation at the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. Professor Nelson began practicing law as a litigation associate at the law firm of Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson and was the 1998 recipient of the NAACP LDF/Fried Frank Fellowship. She received a B.A. from New York University and a J.D. from UCLA School of Law, where she was an Article Editor of the law review. Janai clerked for the Honorable Theodore McMillian on the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit and the Honorable David H. Coar on the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois.
Janai’s publications include:
The First Amendment, Equal Protection, and Felon Disfranchisement: A New Viewpoint, ___ Fla. L. Rev. ___ (forthcoming)
Fair Measure of the Right to Vote: A Comparative Perspective of Voting Rights Enforcement in a Maturing Democracy, 18 Cardozo J. Comp. & Int’l Law 425 (2010).
Defining Race: The Obama Phenomenon and the Voting Rights Act, 72 Alb. L. Rev. 899 (2009).
You can find Janai’s SSRN author page here.