Lara Schwartz

Professorial Lecturer
Department of Government

  • Additional Positions at AU

    Adjunct professor: Washington College of Law (Statutory and Regulatory Process; Legal Research and Writing).
  • Lara Schwartz specializes in constitutional law, civil rights, politics, communications, and policy. With over a decade as a legislative lawyer, lobbyist, and communications strategist in leading civil rights organizations, Lara brings an advocate’s-eye view to her teaching. Prior to joining the SPA faculty, Lara served as Director of Strategic Engagement at the American Constitution Society for Law & Policy. Previously she served as Courts Matter director at Media Matters, Legal Director at the Human Rights Campaign, and Vice President of External Affairs at the American Association of People with Disabilities. Lara practiced securities litigation at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher, and Flom and Gilbert, Heintz, and Randolph. She also served as a law clerk to Judge Ronald Lee Gilman on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit. Lara has appeared on national and local radio and television programs and written op-eds published in national papers and local papers of record.
  • Degrees

    AB, English and American Literature, Brown University 1993
    JD, Harvard Law School 1998
  • Favorite Spot on Campus:


    Favorite Place in Washington DC:

    In the shade.

    Book Currently Reading:

    It's Even Worse Than it Looks: How the American Constitutional System Collided with the New Politics of Extremism

    Languages Spoken:

    English and Legalese

  • Tuesday 10:45-2:45

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  • Fall 2014

    • JLC-196 Selected Topics:Non-Recurring: PPL Scholars Washington Lab
    • Description
  • Spring 2015

Scholarly, Creative & Professional Activities

Media Appearances

Congressional Testimony

  • House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, Subcommittee on Federal Workforce, Postal Service, and District of Columbia. “Ensuring a merit-based employment system: an examination of the Merit Systems Protection Board and the Office of Special Counsel.”  July 12, 2007.

Selected Publications

  • “No Forsaking our Core Principles.” Legal Times, May 26, 2008.
  • "Straight Talk about Hate Crimes Bills: Anti-Gay, Anti-Transgender Bias Stalls Federal Hate Crimes Legislation," Georgetown Journal of Gender & the Law 7, 2006, p. 171-186.
  • Dozens of ghost-written op eds.


Professional Certifications

  • Member (inactive) of the bars of the District of Columbia, Maryland, and the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth and Fourth Circuits.