David Codell, Nationally Recognized Attorney, Joins Williams Institute as Visiting Senior Legal Scholar

For Immediate Distribution
November 27, 2012

Contact: Laura Rodriguez, lrodriguez@rabengroup.com, (310) 956-2425

Codell Brings a Wealth of Legal Expertise to Nation’s Leading Research Center on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Law and Policy

LOS ANGELES—The Williams Institute today named David Codell Visiting Arnold D. Kassoy Senior Scholar of Law and Legal Director.  While maintaining his law practice in Los Angeles, Codell will also oversee the Institute’s legal programs, including submission of amicus briefs in key court cases, research on state and federal anti-discrimination policies and education programs for judges, lawyers and law students.

“David is a nationally recognized expert in civil rights and constitutional law, and a seasoned litigator.   We’ve been drawing upon his expertise and experience for years as an advisor and speaker, and we’re thrilled he’s joining the Institute,” said Brad Sears, Williams Institute Executive Director and Roberta A. Conroy Scholar of Law and Policy.

Codell brings years of experience advancing groundbreaking legal theories in constitutional law regarding sexual orientation and gender identity discrimination. His prior litigation includes representing plaintiffs in In re Marriage Cases, which resulted in California extending marriage to same-sex couples in 2008.  He also submitted an amicus brief in Perry v. Brown, the federal challenge to California’s subsequent ban on same-sex marriage, which the U.S. Supreme Court may decide whether or not to hear as early as this week.

“As the Supreme Court heads into what could be the most important term in history for LGBT legal issues, it is especially important for Williams to have a lawyer with David’s talents and experience, said Nan Hunter, Williams Institute Legal Scholarship Director and Associate Dean at Georgetown Law School.   “We are adding a superstar lawyer to what is already a dream team of researchers at the Williams Institute.”

A graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School, Codell went on to clerk for Judge David S. Tatel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit and Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg of the U.S. Supreme Court. Before opening his own law office in 2003, Mr. Codell practiced constitutional law in association with Laurence H. Tribe in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and was a partner at Irell & Manella LLP in Los Angeles. He is a frequent speaker on LGBT and constitutional law issues and has been the recipient of numerous awards from national legal and community organizations.

“David Codell is one of the foremost legal minds of his generation. The Williams Institute is fortunate to have his acumen and experience,” said Kenji Yoshino, Chief Justice Earl Warren Professor of Constitutional Law at New York University School of Law and Williams Institute Faculty Advisory Committee Member.

Click here for more information about David Codell, incoming Visiting Arnold D. Kassoy Senior Scholar of Law and Legal Director.