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Laura E. Gómez


Issues Civil Rights, Gender & Sexuality

Professor, Law
UCLA School of Law

Laura E. Gómez is a Professor of Law at UCLA School of Law, with appointments in UCLA’s Departments of Sociology and Chicana and Chicano Studies. In recent years she has served as Interim Dean of the Division of Social Sciences in the College of Letters & Science and Vice Dean of UCLA School of Law. Her research focuses on the intersection of law, politics and inequality both today and in the distant past. Her books include the following: Misconceiving Mothers: Legislators, Prosecutors and the Politics of Prenatal Drug Exposure (1997), which is widely taught in law and society and gender studies courses; Mapping “Race”: Critical Approaches to Health Disparities Research (2013); and Manifest Destinies: The Making of the Mexican American Race (2007), which is widely taught in ethnic studies and history courses.

Professor Gómez is proud to have co-founded and served as the first co-director of UCLA School of Law’s Critical Race Studies Program. She served as the youngest and first women-of-color president of the Law and Society Association, a multi-disciplinary organization of scholars. She has served as an associate editor, a member of the editorial board, or a reviewer for a number of prominent scholarly journals, including the Law & Society Review, Law & Social Inquiry, Aztlan: A Journal of Chicano Studies, SIGNS: Journal of Women in Culture and Society, to name a few.

Prior to her career as a law professor, Professor Gómez clerked for Judge Dorothy W. Nelson on the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals and worked as a legislative aide to U.S. Senator Jeff Bingaman of New Mexico, focusing on Central American policy, South African policy, and Armed Services. She graduated with honors in Social Studies from Harvard as a Truman scholar. From Stanford, she received an M.A. and Ph.D. in Sociology, and a J.D.