McGeorge School of Law

Don Doernberg

Adjunct Faculty of Law
Don Doernberg

BA, Yale University
JD, Columbia University School of Law


Professor Don L. Doernberg joined the faculty of Pace Law School in January 1979. From 1984 to 1986, he was a visiting professor at Hastings College of the Law and Santa Clara School of Law in California. He then returned to Pace and taught through the spring 2016 semester, taking emeritus status on August 2, 2016. He now teaches Civil Procedure as an adjunct professor at University of the Pacific McGeorge School of Law. While at Pace, he taught Civil Procedure, Conflict of Laws, Constitutional Law, Criminal Procedure: Investigation, Federal Courts and Torts. Carolina Academic Press published his book Sovereign Immunity or the Rule of Law: The New Federalism's Choice in March, 2005. The fifth edition of his casebook Federal Courts—A Contemporary Approach was published in October, 2013 as part of West’s Interactive Casebook Series. More recently, he wrote the fifth edition of West's Federal Courts Nutshell (2016) and the fourth edition of West's Federal Courts Black Letter Outline (2017). He has also written Identity Crisis: Federal Courts in a Psychological Wilderness, published in 2001, and is co-editor of Civil Procedure Anthology (1998). He has written extensively concerning the subject matter jurisdiction of the federal courts, the law of standing, the propriety of the federal courts creating common law and the historical and philosophical illegitimacy of the doctrines of sovereign immunity and official immunity in the United States. He has chaired the Association of American Law Schools' Section on Federal Courts and continues to serve as Secretary of the Section. He is a member of the American Law Institute. Before entering law teaching, Professor Doernberg taught seriously disturbed children for a year after law school and practiced law for nine years, first in private practice and then as Staff Attorney and Director of Special Litigation for the Criminal Defense Division of The Legal Aid Society in New York City.

Professor Doernberg served as James D. Hopkins Chair in Law during the 2001–2003 academic years.