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International Law, Immigration Experts Join W&L Law Faculty

Four new law professors have joined the permanent faculty at Washington and Lee University School of year this fall.

“We are so pleased to welcome this group of diverse, energetic, and innovative teachers and scholars to our faculty,” said Dean Nora V. Demleitner. “Each of them brings unique expertise and perspective to our educational program, but all share a commitment to cross-disciplinary work that is so crucial to an increasingly interdependent world.”

Prof. David Baluarte joins W&L from American University Washington College of Law, where he was Practitioner-in-Residence and Arbenz Fellow in the International Human Rights Law Clinic (IHRLC). Baluarte will direct the Immigrant Rights Clinic, a practical lawyering experience available to 3L students at W&L as part of the third-year curriculum. Through live representation of immigrant clients, Professor Baluarte will teach students substantive law and the lawyering skills, values, and knowledge necessary to succeed in the legal profession.

Baluarte’s past experience includes managing projects and consulting for the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and the Open Society Justice Initiative (OSJI). Before beginning his teaching career, Professor Baluarte served as a staff attorney in the Immigration Unit the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit and as a staff attorney at the Center for Justice and International Law (CEJIL). He received his J.D. from the American University Washington College of Law.

Prof. Margaret Hu joins W&L from Duke University, where she was Visiting Assistant Professor of Law. Hu’s research interests include the intersection of immigration policy, national security, cyber surveillance, and civil rights. Previously, she served as senior policy advisor for the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders.

Hu also served as special policy counsel in the Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices (OSC), Civil Rights Division, U. S. Department of Justice, in Washington, D.C. As Special Policy Counsel, Professor Hu managed a team of attorneys and investigators in the enforcement of the anti-discrimination provisions of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), and was responsible for federal immigration policy review and coordination for OSC. She received her J.D. from Duke Law School.

Prof. Victoria Shannon’s areas of teaching and scholarship include international arbitration, investment treaty arbitration, alternative dispute resolution (ADR), third-party funding of litigation and arbitration, ethics, civil procedure, and real estate transactions. Shannon served for five years as Deputy Director of Arbitration and ADR in North America for the International Court of Arbitration of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC). In this capacity, she advised government attorneys, in-house counsel and law firm attorneys on all phases of arbitration, mediation and ADR, including negotiating and drafting dispute resolution clauses, selecting neutrals and enforcing arbitral awards. Shannon previously served as an Adjunct Professor at Fordham Law School.

Prior to joining the ICC, Shannon served as an associate with Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP, where she specialized in complex tax credit and municipal bond financing arrangements for affordable housing and community development real estate transactions, as well as matters involving American Indian tribes. In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, she traveled to New Orleans in January 2006 to assist the Washington Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Fair Housing Project with two housing discrimination claims. She received her J.D. from Harvard Law School.

Prof. Kish Vinayagamoorthy teaches International Business Transactions, Transnational Law, and Corporate Social Responsibility. Her research interests relate to cross-border issues confronted by international companies, including global production networks, business ethics, dispute resolution, and transnational regulation. Her current research explores ways to transmit costs and benefits of corporate social responsibility along transnational supply chains. She is also exploring the ways that small firms rely upon relational values to manage risks when they exchange with foreign parties.

Before joining W&L, Vinayagamoorthy was a Visiting Assistant Professor at Villanova University School of Law where she taught Contracts and International Arbitration. Prior to entering the legal academy, she served as an associate with Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP where she practiced investment treaty arbitration and litigation. Professor Vinayagamoorthy specialized in international law with a Master of Philosophy in International Relations from the University of Cambridge, England and a LL.M. in International & Comparative Law from Duke Law School. She received her J.D. from Duke Law School.