Minnesota Law has a long history of welcoming global, state, and local leaders to speak to the Law School community and the public. Many of these events have been video recorded and are available for viewing (see links below).
Robert A. Stein Lecture
Professor Robert A. Stein ’61, dean of the Law School for 15 years and former executive director and chief operating officer of the American Bar Association, generously endowed this lecture series to enrich the Law School community by inviting leaders of the bench and bar and of the governments of the U.S. and other nations to deliver an annual lecture on a topic of national or international interest.
2013 Former U.S. Vice President Walter F. Mondale ‘56
John Dewey Lecture in the Philosophy of Law
This lecture honors John Dewey, American philosopher, educator, and scholar. A proponent of legal realism, Dewey’s philosophy of pragmatism related his conception of a moral life to a variety of contemporary social, economic, and political issues. Dewey lived from 1859 to 1952 and spent one year as a professor of philosophy at the University of Minnesota. The John Dewey Lecture in the Philosophy of Law is funded by a grant from the John Dewey Foundation and is sponsored by the University of Minnesota Law School to provide a forum for significant scholarly contributions to the development of jurisprudence.
The late Curtis B. Kellar ’40, established the Horatio Ellsworth Kellar Distinguished Visitors Program in memory of his father in 1996. This interdisciplinary lecture series at the Law School connects emerging issues in the law with other disciplines. Mr. Curtis Kellar served on the Board of Directors of the Law Alumni Association and the Board of Visitors of the Law School, retiring in 1981 as an Associate General Counsel of Mobil Oil Corp.
2018 Michael Posner, Director of NYU Stern Center for Business and Human Rights and Former U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor. Human Rights Milestones: Progress, Challenges, and the Way Forward
2017 Ari Melber, MSNBC’s chief legal correspondent and host of The Beat. First Amendment Freedom in the Trump Era
2016 Glenn Altschuler, Dean, School of Continuing Education and Summer Sessions; Thomas and Dorothy Litwin Professor of American Studies; Weiss Presidential Fellow, Cornell University. Justice Amidst a Media Frenzy: The McMartin Pre-School Sex Abuse Case
2013 Jonathan Haidt, Thomas Cooley Professor of Ethical Leadership, NYU-Stern School of Business. Moral Psychology and the Law: How Institutions Drive Reasoning, Judgement, and the Search for Evidence
2011 Mary Robinson, former President of Ireland. Law as an Instrument of Change
2010 Nicola Lacey, Professor of Criminal Law and Legal Theory, London School of Economics and Political Science. Could He Forgive Her? Gender, Agency, and Criminality in 19th Century Law and Literature
2009 Nadine Strossen, Professor, New York Law School. Current Challenges to Free Speech
2007 Linda Greenhouse, Supreme Court Correspondent, The New York Times. What Would Justice Powell Do? The "Alien Children" Case and the Meaning of Equal Protection
2007 Reed Hundt, Principal, Charles Ross Partners, LLC, A private investor and advisory service. In China's Shadow: The Crisis of American Entrepreneurship
2006 Scott Turow, Author. It's Only Words: Thoughts of a Lawyer & Novelist
2004 W. Richard West, Jr., Director, National Museum of the American Indian; Native America in the 21st Century. Out of the Mists and Beyond Myth
2004 Stephen L. Carter, William Nelson Cromwell Professor of Law, Yale Law School. The Star Wars Effect: Just War Theory in Popular Film
2002 Kathleen Hall Jamieson, Professor of Communications and Walter H. Annenberg Dean of the Annenberg School for Communications, University of Pennsylvania. The Demise of Fact in Political Debate
2001 Dr. David L. Goodstein, Vice Provost and Professor of Physics & Applied Physics, California Institute of Technology. What is Science?
2001 Lawrence Lessig, Professor, Stanford University Law School. Innovation and the Net
1999 Mr. I. Michael Heyman, Secretary, Smithsonian Institute and Former Chancellor of the University of California, Berkeley. Culture and Process: A Lawyer's View of the Smithsonian
1998 David Halberstam
MLK Convocation in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
In 2016, the University of Minnesota Law School and the Law School's Diversity and Belonging Committee launched our Annual MLK Convocation in an effort to bring all members of the Law School community together to honor Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy and reflect on the continued relevance of his work in our legal community.
2016Echoes of Birmingham featuring the Honorable Alan Page '78, Dr. Tracie Keesee, and the Honorable Mark Kappelhoff
William B. Lockhart Lecture
This lecture honors William B. Lockhart, dean of the University of Minnesota Law School from 1956-72. Instrumental in enriching the Law School curriculum and attracting highly qualified faculty and students, Dean Lockhart shared his gifts of teaching excellence and scholarly leadership with students and faculty. After 28 years as a professor at the Law School (1946-74), Dean Lockhart taught on the faculty of the University of California, Hastings College of Law (1974-94). He died in December 1995.