Deborah L. Rhode
Deborah L. Rhode was one of the country’s leading scholars in the fields of legal ethics and gender, law, and public policy. An author of over 20 books, including The Beauty Bias, Women and Leadership and Moral Leadership, she was the nation’s most frequently cited scholar in legal ethics. She served as the director of the Stanford Center on the Legal Profession, which in 2022 was renamed the Deborah L. Rhode Center on the Legal Profession. She also was Founding President of the International Association of Legal Ethics.
Professor Rhode was the former president of the Association of American Law Schools, the former chair of the American Bar Association’s Commission on Women in the Profession, the founder and former director of Stanford’s Center on Ethics, and the former director of the Michelle R. Clayman Institute for Gender Research at Stanford. She also served as senior counsel to the minority members of the U.S. House Committee on the Judiciary on presidential impeachment issues during the Clinton administration.
She received the American Bar Association’s Michael Franck award for contributions to the field of professional responsibility; the American Bar Foundation’s W. M. Keck Foundation Award for distinguished scholarship on legal ethics; and the American Bar Association’s Pro Bono Publico Award for her work on expanding public service opportunities in law schools. She was a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and vice chair of the board of Legal Momentum (formerly the NOW Legal Defense and Education Fund). She served as a columnist for The National Law Journal and also published editorials in the The New York Times, Washington Post, Boston Globe, and Slate. Rhode died in early 2021.