July 11, 2012
The Harvard Law School faculty has voted to promote Benjamin Sachs, a specialist in labor and workplace law, from assistant professor to professor of law – a tenured faculty position.
Said HLS Dean Martha Minow: “Ben’s inventive and vigorous scholarship breathes new life into crucial issues affecting employment and labor relations. With his imaginative scholarship, compelling teaching, and leadership of the ‘Law and Social Change’ program of study, he has become a vital contributor not only to Harvard Law School, but to the larger world.”
“Harvard is an exceptional community of scholars, students and staff, and the opportunity to write and teach here is a remarkable one,” Sachs said. “I am delighted and honored by the promotion.”
Sachs teaches labor law, employment law, and HLS’s workshop on law and social change. Prior to joining the HLS faculty in 2008, he served as the Joseph Goldstein Fellow at Yale Law School, where he was awarded the 2007 Yale Law School Teaching Award and taught emerging trends in labor law.
Before teaching at Yale, Sachs served as assistant general counsel of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) in Washington, D.C., from 2002 to 2006. A Skadden Fellow, he previously served as a staff attorney at the Workplace Justice Project, a membership-based community organization in Brooklyn, N.Y., and as a law clerk for the Hon. Judge Stephen Reinhardt of the U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit. He also served as co-chair of the Immigration Committee of the American Bar Association Section on Labor and Employment Law from 2004 to 2006.
He is the author of numerous scholarly publications in leading law journals. His most recent scholarship includes “Unions, Corporations, and Political Opt-Out Rights After Citizens United” (Columbia Law Review, 2012), “Despite Preemption: Making Labor Law in Cities and States” (Harvard Law Review, 2011), “Enabling Employee Choice: A Structural Approach to the Rules of Union Organizing” (Harvard Law Review, 2010), and “Reinhardt at Work” (Yale Law Journal, 2010). His writing also has appeared in the Harvard Law and Policy Review, and several labor and employment law publications.
Sachs holds a B.A. from Oberlin College, where he was a Truman Scholar and Phi Beta Kappa, and a J.D. from Yale Law School, where he won the Hon. William E. Miller Prize for Paper Concerning the Bill of Rights for his piece “Residential Picketing and the First Amendment.”
Before obtaining his law degree, Sachs worked at the U.S. Department of Labor and in the Employment Division of Northeast Ohio Legal Services. He has also spent time as a summer associate at Bredhoff & Kaiser in Washington, D.C.