International Human Rights Expert Joins Clinical Law Program

The College of Law is pleased to announce that Gwynne Skinner will join the school’s Clinical Law Program as assistant professor of clinical law this fall. Skinner has considerable experience in the areas of international human rights, refugee law, civil rights, clinical practice and law school teaching.

A former criminal prosecutor and experienced civil litigator, Skinner practiced law for 12 years before leaving her litigation practice in 2003 to found the Seattle-based Public Interest Law Group PLLC, where she engaged in impact litigation in the areas of international human rights and civil rights. In 2005, she was named one of Seattle’s top civil rights lawyers. More recently, she served as a visiting professor at Seattle University School of Law, where she taught the international human rights clinic and significantly contributed to the development and growth of that new clinic.

Skinner holds a B.A. in political science from the University of Northern Iowa (summa cum laude), an M.A. in American studies and a J.D. from the University of Iowa (magna cum laude), and an M.St. (LL.M. equivalent) in international human rights law from the University of Oxford, where she earned Distinction.

Skinner will join Willamette in August and launch the law school’s first International Human Rights Law Clinic. This new clinic will complement the College of Law’s specialized Certificate Program in International & Comparative Law, which was designed to prepare students to meet the challenges of legal careers in an increasingly global profession.

“I am extremely pleased that Professor Skinner will join Willamette’s Clinical Law Program,” said Warren Binford, director of the program. “Professor Skinner has made a significant impact everywhere she has practiced law. We feel extremely fortunate to have her join our program and are looking forward to working with her as she continues to contribute to the advancement of human rights and clinical legal education for years to come.”