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About the Authors

Leslie Harris

Photo - Leslie Harris
J.D., University of New Mexico School of Law
B.A., New Mexico State University

Leslie Harris is the Dorothy Kliks Fones Professor of Law at the University of Oregon, where she teaches Family Law and other courses and directs the Oregon Child Advocacy Project, which provides education and assistance to attorneys advocating for the interests of children. She has written law review articles about the child welfare system, nontraditional families, family support duties, and property rights at divorce and is the co-author of textbooks on Family Law and Children and the Law which are widely used throughout the U.S. She is an elected member of the American Law Institute and serves on advisory boards for the Oregon Juvenile Court Improvement Project and several other organizations. She was one of the first recipients of the law school's Orlando John Hollis Faculty Teaching Award.


Tamar S. Birckhead

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Photo - Tamar S.  Birckhead

J.D. (cum laude), Harvard University
B.A., English Literature (cum laude), Yale University

Tamar Birckhead is an assistant professor of law at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where she teaches the Juvenile Justice Clinic and the criminal lawyering process. Her research interests focus on issues related to juvenile justice policy and reform, criminal law and procedure, and indigent criminal defense. Her scholarship appears in the Buffalo Law Review, North Carolina Law Review, Rutgers Law Review, Washington and Lee Law Review, and Washington University Law Review, among others. Her current projects include Juvenile Justice 2.0, forthcoming in Brooklyn Law School's Journal of Law and Policy and Delinquent by Reason of Indigency, forthcoming in Washington University's Journal of Law and Policy. She is a visiting assistant professor at Duke Law School this semester, teaching a course on juvenile courts and delinquency.

Prior to joining the UNC School of Law faculty in 2004, Professor Birckhead taught at Suffolk University Law School in the Suffolk Defenders Program, a year-long criminal defense clinic. After clerking for the late and the Hon. Edith Fine in the Massachusetts Appeals Court, she practiced for ten years as a public defender, representing indigent criminal defendants in the Massachusetts trial and appellate courts as a staff attorney with the Committee for Public Counsel Services and in federal district court in Boston as an assistant federal public defender. Professor Birckhead has defended clients in a wide variety of criminal cases, from violent felony offenses in state court to acts of terrorism in federal court. Among her clients was Richard Reid, the attempted "Shoe Bomber" prosecuted in the First Circuit under the U.S.A. Patriot Act.

Licensed to practice in North Carolina, New York and Massachusetts, Professor Birckhead has been a frequent lecturer at continuing legal education programs across the United States as well as a faculty member at the Trial Advocacy Workshop at Harvard Law School. She is vice president of the board for the North Carolina Center on Actual Innocence and has been appointed to the executive council of the Juvenile Justice and Children's Rights Section of the North Carolina Bar Association. She is also a member of the advisory board for the North Carolina Juvenile Defender as well as a member of the Criminal Defense Section and the Juvenile Defender Section of the North Carolina Academy of Trial Lawyers. Professor Birckhead received her B.A. degree in English literature with honors from Yale University and her J.D. with honors from Harvard Law School, where she served as Recent Developments Editor of the Harvard Women's Law Journal.