David B. Wilkins, the Kirkland & Ellis Professor of Law and the Director of the Program on the Legal Profession at Harvard Law School, will deliver a speech February 5 on black Chicago lawyers and the social structure of the black corporate bar at this year's Pope & John Lecture on Professionalism at Northwestern University School of Law, 357 E. Chicago Ave. The lecture will take place at noon in Rubloff 140 and is free and open to the public.
Professor Wilkins is also a Visiting Senior Research Fellow of the American Bar Foundation and a Faculty Associate of the Harvard University Center for Ethics and the Professions.
Since joining the Harvard faculty in 1986, Professor Wilkins has written extensively on the legal profession, with an emphasis on the experiences of black lawyers in corporate law firms. He is co-author (along with his Harvard Law School colleague Andrew Kaufman) of Problems in Professional Responsibility for a Changing Profession, Carolina Academic Press (4th ed. 2002) as well as numerous articles on legal ethics, law firms, and the legal profession.
His upcoming scholarship on black lawyers includes: The Black Bar: The Legacy of Brown v. Board of Education and the Future of Race and the American Legal Profession (Oxford University Press); From “Separate is Inherently Unequal” to “Diversity is Good for Business”: Consumerism, Competition, and Conscience in the Careers of Black Corporate Lawyers (Harvard Law Review); and Doing Well by Doing Good? The Role of Public Service in the Careers of Black Corporate Lawyers (U of Houston Law Review).
Currently, Professor Wilkins is working on a project titled After the JD, a nationwide longitudinal study of lawyers’ careers, and an empirical investigation into how corporations purchase legal services.
Professor Wilkins is a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School. He has served as a law clerk to Justice Thurgood Marshall of the Supreme Court and Judge Wilfred Feinberg of the United States Court of Appeals. Prior to joining Harvard’s faculty, Professor Wilkins was an associate at the law firm of Nussbaum Owen & Webster in Washington, D.C.
In 1991 the Chicago firm of Pope & John Ltd. established a lecture series at Northwestern Law. Each year the Pope & John Lecture on Professionalism focuses on the many dimensions of a lawyer's professional responsibility, including legal ethics, public service, professional civility, pro bono representation, and standards of conduct. The series is part of the Law School's Program on Advocacy and Professionalism and is directed by Professor Steven Lubet.