McGeorge School of Law

Leslie Gielow Jacobs appointed inaugural Justice Anthony M. Kennedy Professor of Law

September 12, 2019

Leslie Jacobs

Leslie Gielow Jacobs, Director of the Pacific McGeorge Capital Center for Law & Policy and inaugural Justice Anthony M. Kennedy Professor of Law

Leslie Gielow Jacobs has been appointed the inaugural Justice Anthony M. Kennedy Professor of Law at University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law. Professor Jacobs, who also serves as director of the school’s Capital Center for Law and Policy, has taught at McGeorge since 1993. She is regarded as an outstanding educator and leader who adopts best practices in her classrooms; she teaches constitutional law, remedies, and statutes and regulations.

“It is a great honor to be selected to occupy the Anthony M. Kennedy Endowed Chair,” Jacobs said. “Justice Kennedy has been on the Supreme Court during my entire career as a constitutional law professor, and the decisions in which his vote was crucial to form a majority and the opinions that he has written have figured prominently in my scholarship and teaching.”

The Anthony M. Kennedy Endowed Chair, named in honor of the retired U.S. Supreme Court justice and McGeorge adjunct professor, was created through a generous $1 million gift by the Tsakopoulos Family Foundation. The gift was doubled by Pacific's Powell Match Program.

Kennedy, who was appointed to the Supreme Court by President Ronald Reagan in 1988, began teaching constitutional law at McGeorge School of Law in 1965. Today, he is McGeorge's longest-serving faculty member.

The Tsakopoulos family established the Justice Anthony M. Kennedy Endowed Chair in honor of his retirement from the Supreme Court and his more than 50-year legacy at McGeorge. The purpose of the endowment is to provide resources to attract prominent faculty and advance legal thinking through scholarship and leadership in the legal community.

"McGeorge is where Kennedy has made an impact teaching many students, and this gift will continue his inspiration for decades," said Angelo Tsakopoulos.

Jacobs is a renowned constitutional law educator and scholar. She has authored a substantial and important body of scholarship on constitutional doctrine, governance and national security, with a particular emphasis on government speech. Jacobs graduated magna cum laude from the University of Michigan Law School and served as a law clerk to U.S. Supreme Court Justice Lewis F. Powell, Jr.

Her appointment reflects the impact of her work and ensures Justice Kennedy's legacy will shine brightly.