Scott Bauries will teach Federal Courts, Civil Procedure, and Conflict of Laws. In future academic years he hopes to add State Constitutional Law and potentially Complex Litigation to his list of courses.
“My main scholarly interests lie in judicial decision making, including theories of interpretation and then judicial role,” says Bauries. “My recent work develops a fiduciary theory of state constitutions and examines the implications of such a theory for some common constitutional interpretation and judicial decision-making problems.”
Bauries has long been interested in education, beginning his career in academia as a middle and high school teacher in Florida. In order to become a school administrator, he was required to get a Master’s in Educational Leadership. One of the required courses for the degree was School Law, and taking it changed the course of his future.
“I was hooked,” says Bauries. “I applied to the Ph.D. program at the University of Florida, and the man who became my doctoral Chair convinced me to become the “test subject” for a joint J.D./Ph.D. program… I initially intended to teach in a college of education, but I found that I had a real interest in and aptitude for legal thinking, so I changed my focus to legal academia.”
Bauries spent the last 14 years teaching at the University of Kentucky College of Law, but he is no stranger to the Palmetto State. In college he spent several months selling educational books door-to-door in and around Myrtle Beach, an experience he found both enriching and humbling.
Now, back in South Carolina, he looks forward to being closer to family, connecting with faculty, and empowering students.
“I am mindful of what a great privilege it is to be able to do what I do for a living,” says Bauries. “I am extremely grateful that I now get to do this job at South Carolina Law.”
Mitchell Willoughby Distinguished Professor
Kevin Brown joins the university faculty as the first Mitchell Willoughby Distinguished Professor of Advocacy and Public Justice. The professorship was made possible by a transformative gift from Mitchell Willoughy ’75.
Brown will teach Torts; Race, American Society, and the Law; and a Seminar on Transnational Inequality. Previously, he was the Richard S. Melvin Professor at Indiana University Maurer School of Law where he was a faculty member for 35 years.
“Both of my parents were public school teachers in segregated Indianapolis public schools. I attended segregated public schools until I reached the fifth grade. As a result, I have always had a strong interest in race and education,” says Brown. “When I decided to join academia, I was primarily motivated by a desire to figure out how education could make our society a more just one.”
Brown’s accomplishments centering equity are plentiful, among them creating one of the first Race and Law courses in the legal academy and an essay arguing international boarding schools in Ghana are a potential solution to the educational issues facing African Americans.
But he considers his greatest accomplishment being the lead author in the first law review article to address whether U.S. employment discrimination law covers caste discrimination.
“This article came out of my work with Dalits (formerly known as ‘outcastes’ or ‘untouchables’) for the past two decades,” says Brown. “The article argues that U.S. employment discrimination law would recognize caste discrimination based on untouchability as a form of race, national origin, or religious discrimination.”
For Brown, justice is a recurring theme and a constant goal, inspiring others at home and abroad.
“More recently, I have spent a lot of time studying and writing about the international impact of the African-American struggle,” says Brown. “Several groups throughout the world who are struggling against oppression and subordination in their country look to the African-American struggle for inspiration in their struggle as well as for policies and programs that they can institute.”
Cassandra Jones Havard
Cassandra Jones Havard joins South Carolina Law from the University of Baltimore School of Law where she taught for 18 years. She will teach Banking Law: Sales and Leases; Secured Transactions; Venture Capital Financing; and Entrepreneurship Law.
“Banking regulation is a fascinating field because it intersects with many other disciplines,” says Havard. “Unlike other businesses, however, banks are heavily regulated because they have access to the public fisc in times of economic crisis and use consumers’ deposits to operate daily.”
Her most recent scholarship focuses on economic inclusion that ensures consumers can safely access affordable financial products and services. But Havard’s desire for equity extends beyond her scholarship; she co-created The Charles Hamilton Houston Scholars Program at the University of Baltimore, a pipeline for undergraduates of under-represented groups in the legal profession.
“[Houston] is often described as 'the man who killed Jim Crow’ because of his brilliant legal strategies. Over the years, I have had the good fortune of sharing the Houston story as a motivating influence encouraging and teaching young scholars how to thrive as they prepare for law school and a career in the legal profession and watching them develop into outstanding attorneys.”
Havard has long been fascinated by the impact of law in creating a just society. While working on the Black Law Journal in her third year as a student at the University of Pennsylvania, she discovered a love of researching and writing that helped her understand the interplay of policy and law. When she began teaching, she was intentional about sharing that same lesson with her students.
“Broadening that conversation leads to a discussion of why full and fair economic participation is essential to a capitalist society,” says Havard. “More awareness of the need for a more stringent legal framework is crucial to assure basic economic rights, a core value of democratic citizenship.”
Laura Lane-Steele will teach Problems in Professional Responsibility; Parents, Children, and the State; Civil Rights; and a seminar on sex and the law.
Lane-Steele taught high school before attending Harvard Law School with the goal of learning more about the legal system and its impact on individuals and society at large. During her time at Harvard, she developed a love for law and a particular interest in discrimination and inequality.
“My scholarship explores how law disciplines and regulates our identities and relationships,” says Lane-Steele. “I focus primarily on questions of sex identity and inequality, but I also examine other forms of identity-based discrimination and their relationship to sex discrimination.”
After graduating law school, she worked in Washington, D.C. with Steptoe and Johnson LLP before returning to the classroom as a Forrester Fellow at Tulane Law School.
“I went into academia because I wanted to continue exploring the issues I first encountered in these classes,” says Lane-Steele. “I hope to show my students how law is a tool through which to achieve various goals — from marshalling social change to helping individual clients during some of the most difficult times of their lives.”
Lane-Steele knows that a strong support system is crucial to success and is confident that South Carolina Law creates an environment that helps faculty and students thrive.
“The professors here are brilliant scholars as well as kind people,” says Lane-Steele. “The students [are] enthusiastic and curious — they also confirmed what I had suspected: that the school had a collegial and warm culture where they felt both challenged and supported.”
But it’s more than academics that has Lane-Steele eager to be in the capitol city.
“I actually grew up right here in Columbia. I’ve been a Gamecock fan my whole life (women’s basketball in particular),” says Lane-Steele. “I am ecstatic to be back.”