Integrating Doctrine & Diversity Speaker Series: Making Space, Taking Space

- Virtual ProgramOpen to the PublicRegistration Required

This event is co-sponsored by Roger Williams University School of Law and City University of New York School of Law.

Drawing upon the experience of faculty from across the country, Integrating Doctrine and Diversity is a collection of essays with practical advice, written by faculty for faculty, on specific ways to integrate diversity, equity and inclusion into the law school curriculum. Chapters will focus on subjects traditionally taught in the first-year curriculum (Civil Procedure, Constitutional Law, Contracts, Legal Writing, Legal Research, Property, Torts) and each chapter will also include a short annotated bibliography curated by a law librarian. With submissions from over 40 scholars, the collection is the first of its kind to offer reflections, advice and specific instruction on how to integrate issues of diversity and inclusions into first-year doctrinal courses.

Part of the Integrating Doctrine and Diversity Speaker Series, this session will be a discussion among book contributors about how to create space for all students in the classroom and how to create spaces which are not just safe, but brave.

Meet the Speakers


Deborah Ahrens is a Professor of Law at Seattle University School of Law who teaches and writes about criminal law, criminal procedure, and evidence. Professor Ahrens has served as the law school’s William C. Oltman Professor of Teaching Excellence.  Professor Ahrens is currently visiting at the University of San Francisco School of Law. 

Professor Ahrens' scholarship focuses on the cultural significance of contemporary policing practices and criminal sanctioning regimes, with particular emphasis on drug policy, on the regulation of student speech and conduct, and on the reforms necessary to ameliorate the consequences of our failed experiment with mass incarceration and a hyper-punitive war on drugs. She is frequent media commentator on questions related to criminal law and criminal justice policy and presents at academic and professional events on a wide variety of criminal procedure, evidence, and sentencing issues.  She is also engaged in the Washington State legal community as a board member for the Inn of Court; a member of the Washington State Pattern Jury Instruction Committee; and through service to Washington State and King County bar committees.

Gabby Benjamin

Gabrielle B. Benjamin is a third-year student at RWU School of Law who works as a Teaching Assistant for Professor Jenna Wims Hashway's Legal Practice course and the pilot course, Race & Foundations of American Law. Before attending RWUSOL, Gabrielle received her B.A. in Art History from Pennsylvania State University. Since enrolling at RWUSOL, she has been a Sea Grant Law Fellow, an American Bar Association JIOP Intern at the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, and an extern for the Arts & Business Council of Greater Boston. Her academic interests broadly lay in legal research and administrative law. Gabrielle is an active member of the RWUSOL Black Law Students Association and has served on its Executive Board for the past two school years. She enjoys engaging pro bono work that focuses on either the arts and culture sector or environmental justice in her spare time. 


Kali Murray is a Professor of Law at Marquette University Law School. Professor Murray's research agenda is focused on the "politics of participation" in patent, property, and administrative law. In patent law, Professor Murray is interested in how the doctrinal formation of patent law is impacted by different administrative, political, and social structures. Among her works, she has published a book, The Politics of Patent Law: Crafting the Participatory Patent Bargain, as a part of the Routledge Research Series in Intellectual Property Law in 2013.   Her current work, Infrostructure(s), focuses on how public rights in information are constructed.  In property law, Professor Murray is interested in the impact of race, ethnicity, and culture on the development of property law. She is a co-author with Alfred Brophy and Alberto Lopez, Integrating Spaces: Cases and Materials on Race and Property Law (1st Ed. 2012), and is currently working with Interim Dean Rose Cuison-Villazor on Integrating Spaces: Property Law and Identity, which will expand the focus of the first edition, to social identities such as race, gender, disability, citizenship status, and sexual orientation. 


Nicole P. Dyszlewski

Nicole P. Dyszlewski is one of the editors of Integrating Doctrine and Diversity: Inclusion and Equity in the Law School Classroom. She currently serves as the Head of Reference, Instruction, and Engagement at the RWU Law Library and as an adjunct professor. She received a B.A. from Hofstra University, a J.D. from Boston University School of Law, and an M.L.I.S. from the University of Rhode Island Graduate School of Library and Information Studies. She is a member of the Massachusetts State Bar and the Rhode Island State Bar. Her areas of interest are mass incarceration, access to justice, and systems of race and gender inequality in law. Nicole was the 2020 recipient of the American Association of Law Libraries (AALL) Volunteer Service Award and the 2015 recipient of the AALL Emerging Leader Award.

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View The First Program In This Series Here