University of Arizona Law Announces Nine New Faculty Hires

May 22, 2018

The University of Arizona James E. Rogers College of Law is pleased to welcome nine new faculty members. Their scholarship, teaching and advocacy span a wide range of areas, from the psychology behind legal decision-making to civil justice reform, from the management of natural resources to changing family law, and from the regulation of health care research and innovation to cybersecurity.

“We’re thrilled to add these exceptional teachers, scholars and practitioners to our faculty ranks,” said Dean Marc Miller. “They will further enrich the college’s intellectual core and animate the impact and importance of law and policy for our students.”

Albertina Antognini joins as an associate professor of law and will teach courses in Family Law, Property, Trusts and Estates as well as a seminar on the regulation of the modern family. Antognini’s research focuses on the regulation of nonmarital relationships. Her recent piece, “The Law of Nonmarriage,” was selected for the 2016 Harvard/Yale/Stanford Junior Faculty Forum. Prior to joining University of Arizona Law, she was an assistant professor at the University of Kentucky College of Law. Antognini received her JD from Harvard Law School.

Stacy Butler has been hired as director of innovation for justice, a new position that will focus on improving access to justice with the use of design theory, technology, and interdisciplinary collaboration. Butler has two decades of experience in community advocacy and expanding the reach of civil legal services for under-served populations. In 2017, she launched Step Up to Justice, a pro bono civil legal center that delivers free legal services to low-income families in Pima County. Butler created an Access to Justice course at University of Arizona Law in 2017, which provided students with an opportunity to design and launch real-world access to justice solutions. She is a 2002 University of Arizona Law JD alumna.

Christopher Griffin joins as a visiting professor of law, coming from Harvard Law School, where he is the research director for the Access to Justice Lab. He earned a B.S. in International Political Economy magna cum laude in 2002 from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service. During the next two years, he read for the MPhil in Economics at Brasenose College, Oxford as an Allbritton Scholar. Chris worked from 2004 to 2007 as a Yale Law School postgraduate fellow and at the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, focusing on empirical law & economics and the economics of higher education, respectively. In 2010, he graduated from the Yale Law School, where he was an Editor on the Yale Law Journal and Editor-in-Chief of the Yale Law & Policy Review. Chris then joined the Duke Law School faculty as a Visiting Assistant Professor and taught at William & Mary Law School from 2012 to 2016. 

Indigenous Peoples Law and Policy (IPLP) program alumna Akilah Kinnison returns to University of Arizona Law as an assistant professor and IPLP program graduate advisor. She will teach Critical Race Theory to our graduate students and Public International Law to our BA in Law and MLS students. Kinnison joins the college from Hobbs, Straus, Dean & Walker, LLP, a national law firm based in Washington D.C., dedicated to the practice of federal Indian law. Her practice areas include cultural and natural resource protection, health care and education, international repatriation, tribal gaming and government relations. Kinnison received both her JD and LLM from University of Arizona Law. 

Shefali Milczarek-Desai joins as Director of the Workers' Rights Clinic and Professor of Practice.  Previously, Shefali assisted in litigating Flores v. Arizona, a U.S. Supreme Court case concerning the rights of Arizona’s English Language Learner students, practiced at the DeConcini McDonald law firm where she was elected shareholder, and clerked for Vice-Chief Justice Ruth V. McGregor at the Arizona Supreme Court. Shefali is a Rhodes Scholarship Finalist, a Notre Dame Law School Feminist Jurisprudence award winner, and has authored numerous, widely-published articles and essays as well as a book-length manuscript that was selected as a finalist in an international competition.

Tara Sklar joins as a director of graduate health sciences programs. She will be based in the DC area, and will teach online courses in Clinical Research Ethics for Regulatory Science and Regulatory Aspects for Health Care Delivery. Sklar will also oversee development and administration of regulatory science and health law programs. She comes to University of Arizona Law from the University of Melbourne’s School of Population and Global Health, where she served as a fellow in the law and public health group and previously as director of aging programs. Sklar received her JD from the University of Houston Law Center and a master of public health degree from the University of Texas Health Sciences Center.

Bethany Sullivan, a 2011 University of Arizona Law JD graduate, returns to the college as the Lohse clinical director for the new Natural Resource Use and Management Clinic. Sullivan formerly served as an attorney-advisor at the Department of Interior, where she counseled the assistant secretary of Indian affairs on tribal lands and natural resources. She has worked on issues pertaining to tribal trust lands, reservation boundaries, leasing and rights-of-way, taxation and tribal jurisdiction, and environmental compliance in both the regulatory and federal civil litigation settings.

Tammi Walker is a new associate professor of law with a joint appointment as an associate professor in the Department of Psychology in the College of Science. She will be teaching courses in Juvenile Law. Walker was previously a visiting assistant professor at the University of Illinois College of Law, where she taught courses in Juvenile Law and Civil Procedure. She is an experienced litigator and a trained research psychologist with an interest in procedural fairness and the administration of justice. Walker uses psychological theory and empirical research methods to challenge the validity of commonly held beliefs that often support legal decision-making. Her research is designed to improve outcomes by combating bias in treatment and punishment decisions. Walker received a PhD from the University of Virginia and a JD from Columbia Law School.

Andrew Woods joins as associate professor of law. He will teach courses in Contracts and Technology Policy. Woods’ research interests include cybersecurity and the regulation of technology. He comes to University of Arizona Law after serving as an assistant professor of law at the University of Kentucky College of Law. He holds a JD from Harvard Law School and a PhD from the University of Cambridge.

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