Law Links - January 2017

School of Law and Alumni Association select Gardner for its highest honor

Interim Dean James Gardner.

Interim Dean James Gardner

A longtime constitutional law scholar and professor, who currently serves as the University at Buffalo School of Law’s interim dean, has been chosen to receive the school and the Law Alumni Association’s highest honor, the Edwin F. Jaeckle Award.

James A. Gardner, who holds the title SUNY Distinguished Professor, is the Bridget and Thomas Black Professor at the School of Law. He has served as interim dean since December 2014, and during that time has led significant initiatives to strengthen the school’s administration, teaching and clinical education offerings.         

The Jaeckle Award is given annually to “an individual who has distinguished himself or herself and has made significant contributions to the School of Law and the legal profession.” As part of the school’s annual New York Alumni Luncheon, the presentation will take place at the Union League Club, 38 E. 37th St. in Manhattan, on Jan. 27.

A member of the law faculty since 2001, Gardner is a highly regarded specialist in constitutional and election law. His scholarly research and writing has focused on the workings of subnational governments, such as states and provinces, both in the United States and abroad. He has published six books as well as numerous book chapters, articles and review essays.

Gardner’s most recent publications include Election Law in the American Political System (Aspen), What Are Campaigns For? The Role of Persuasion in Electoral Law and Politics (Oxford University Press) and a new revision of his Legal Argument: The Structure and Language of Effective Advocacy (LexisNexis).

He recently was recognized as one of the 10 most frequently cited scholars in the field of election law by the Election Law blog.  

At UB School of Law, Gardner previously served as director of the Jaeckle Center for Law, Democracy and Governance. Before becoming interim dean, he was vice dean for academic affairs from 2005 to 2012. He also served as the elected chair of the School of Law’s ad hoc Strategic Planning Committee, which evaluated the current state of the school and identified strategies to preserve and enhance its strengths.

Gardner earned his B.A. from Yale University in 1980 and his J.D. from the University of Chicago in 1984. From 1984 to 1988, he practiced law in the Civil Division of the U.S. Department of Justice in Washington, D.C.