Leslie Kendrick is the White Burkett Miller Professor of Law and Public Affairs and the Elizabeth D. and Richard A. Merrill Professor of Law at the University of Virginia School of Law. She serves as special advisor to the UVA provost on free expression and inquiry, director of the Center for the First Amendment, and a fellow at the UVA Shannon Center for Advanced Studies.
Kendrick’s work focuses on torts and freedom of speech and has appeared in the Harvard Law Review, Yale Law Journal, Columbia Law Review, Michigan Law Review, Law & Philosophy, Legal Theory, and Philosophy & Public Affairs, among other journals. She is co-author of the casebook Tort Law: Responsibilities and Redress, with John C. P. Goldberg, Anthony J. Sebok and Benjamin C. Zipursky. Kendrick is a recipient of the University of Virginia’s All-University Teaching Award and the Law School’s Carl McFarland Prize for outstanding research by a junior faculty member.
Kendrick is a member of the American Law Institute and an adviser to the Restatement of the Law Third, Torts: Defamation and Privacy. She is past chair of the AALS Section on Torts and Compensation Systems. In 2021, she chaired the committee that produced the University’s Statement on Free Expression and Free Inquiry, which was endorsed by the president and adopted by the Board of Visitors.
A member of the Virginia State Bar and the Fourth Circuit Judicial Conference, Kendrick has served on the executive committee of the Charlottesville-Albemarle Bar Association and has recently litigated cases before the Supreme Court of Virginia, the Western District of Virginia and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.
Kendrick received a B.A. in classics and English as a Morehead Scholar at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She received her master’s and doctorate in English literature as a Rhodes Scholar at the University of Oxford. She received a J.D. as a Hardy Cross Dillard Scholar at UVA Law, where she served as essays development editor for the Virginia Law Review and received several academic awards, including the Margaret G. Hyde Award.
Before joining the faculty in 2008, Kendrick clerked for Judge J. Harvie Wilkinson III of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit and Justice David Hackett Souter of the Supreme Court of the United States. She has been a visiting professor at Columbia Law School, UCLA Law School and Harvard Law School.
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