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Open-Rank Clinical Professor of Law and Legal Director, Center on Wrongful Convictions

Website Northwester Pritzker School of Law, Bluhm Legal Clinic

Northwestern Pritzker School of Law invites applications for a full-time clinical faculty member who will serve as legal director of the Center on Wrongful Convictions within the Bluhm Legal Clinic. The expected start date is July 1, 2024. The faculty appointment may be as a Clinical Professor of Law, Associate Clinical Professor of Law, or Assistant Clinical Professor of Law, at a level commensurate with experience and qualifications.

Founded in 1999, the Center on Wrongful Convictions is dedicated to identifying and rectifying wrongful convictions and other serious miscarriages of justice. To date, the Center has exonerated more than forty innocent men, women, and children from states around the country, and it receives thousands of inquiries a year. The CWC also houses some of the nation’s leading legal experts on false confessions and police interrogations and has helped exonerate more than twenty false confessors.

Role & Responsibilities

The Legal Director will report to the Associate Dean of Clinical Education. The Legal Director will set the vision for the Center on Wrongful Convictions. Setting the vision includes but is not limited to the following tasks:

Supervising students in their case work;

Teaching a weekly class on wrongful convictions;

Teaching about bias, cross-cultural competency and racism in the context of wrongful convictions;

Supervising co-teachers, staff and/or fellows in the Center on Wrongful Convictions;

Working with partner innocence and wrongful convictions organizations;

Developing advocacy projects involving wrongful convictions and unfair sentencing;

According to the Director’s vision, leading initiatives that offer students meaningful, practice-oriented learning experiences;

Participating in Bluhm Legal Clinic and Law School meetings, events and committee work;

Traveling as required for court appearances, depositions, meetings with clients and, when appropriate, donors;

Promoting the work of the Center to the Law School and to the community; and

Working with the Law School’s development and marketing teams for Center stewardship and promotion.



Required Experience and Qualifications:

J.D. degree from an ABA-accredited law school;

At least five years of relevant litigation and clemency experience;

Exceptional research, writing, and editing skills;

Ability to collaborate, a commitment to creating a working environment that is inclusive, equitable and welcoming, and a willingness to honor the diverse experiences and perspectives of Bluhm staff, students, and clients;

Desire to engage in and client-centered advocacy and lawyering, and a willingness to use the law creatively and strategically to seek criminal justice; and

Admission to the Illinois Bar.


LOCATION: Chicago, Illinois

COMPENSATION: The salary is competitive and includes an excellent benefits package through Northwestern University.  Salary will be commensurate with experience and based on years out of law school.

TO APPLY:  Applicants should submit a cover letter, curriculum vitae, a list of three professional references, and a recent legal writing sample through Northwestern’s online application system. Applicants are also invited to submit a statement addressing their past and/or potential contributions to enhancing diversity, equity, and/or inclusion through legal practice, teaching, personal experience and/or service.

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis and applicants are encouraged to apply as soon as possible and by February 15, 2024.

All applicants must have and be committed to the cultural competence required to work with clients and colleagues who come from different backgrounds and experiences.

Please read ALL instructions and make preparations before proceeding to the application page:

Applications will only be accepted via online submission.
Please prepare all documents in advance as Adobe PDF files, and please be sure all information is entered correctly and accurately (especially names and email addresses), as there will be no opportunity for online revision after your application has been submitted.
All required fields in the application form are marked with an asterisk and must be filled before clicking the “Submit” button.
Be aware that incomplete applications cannot be saved.

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