Law school hosts preeminent constitutional law expert as distinguished visiting scholar

July 10, 2023 · By David Sandler
Sullivan Hall building exterior
Sullivan Hall, Seattle University School of Law
Ronald Krotoszynski
Ronald J. Krotoszynski

Seattle University School of Law is hosting a renowned legal scholar and professor, Ronald J. Krotoszynski, as a Distinguished Visiting Scholar in Residence this summer. A faculty member at the University of Alabama School of Law, Krotoszynski is in Seattle to research and write a book titled, “Free Speech as Civic Structure: A Comparative Analysis of How Courts and Culture – Not Constitutional Text – Shape the Freedom of Speech.”

“We are honored that Professor Krotoszynski has joined us this summer. As one of the nation’s foremost legal theorists on constitutional law and the First Amendment, his presence in our law school and on the Seattle University campus will contribute significantly to our intellectual life,” said Dean Anthony E. Varona. “We are thrilled to host Professor Krotoszynski.”

“I’m really pleased to be back at Seattle U Law. This is my first time back since the pandemic, and it’s great to be part of the law school and university community. I feel welcomed and supported by the students, faculty, and staff, and it’s a great place to be,” Krotoszynski said.

Scheduled for publication by Oxford University Press in 2024, Krotoszynski’s book is a comparative law project that examines free speech rights in several countries – including the United States, Israel, Australia, the United Kingdom, and South Africa. He posits that the strength or weakness of such rights has more to do with rulings and interpretations by judges rather than source materials such as the text of laws and regulations.

Krotoszynski is no stranger to Seattle or the law school. While in law school, he was first introduced to the city while serving as a summer associate at Davis Wright Tremaine’s downtown office. He also used the city as a home base during a sabbatical year in 2010 and routinely spends his summers here.

“I appreciate what a dynamic and wonderful place this is,” he said. “And I have found that Seattle University School of Law is an excellent place to work because it possesses an engaged intellectual life. It’s also an open and welcoming place. I’ve been very productive during the time I’ve spent here, and when something works, I stick with it.”

Krotoszynski earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Emory University and JD and LLM degrees from Duke University School of Law, where he was articles editor for the Duke Law Journal and selected for Order of the Coif. He clerked for the Hon. Frank M. Johnson, Jr. of the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit and was an associate with Covington & Burling, D.C.

Prior to joining the faculty at the University of Alabama School of Law, Krotoszynski served on the law faculty at Washington and Lee University and, prior to that, on the law faculty of the Indiana University School of Law-Indianapolis. He also has taught as a visiting professor at Washington and Lee University School of Law, the Marshall-Wythe School of Law at the College of William and Mary, at Florida State University College of Law, and at Brooklyn Law School. Krotoszynski has held appointments as a visiting scholar in residence at University of Washington School of Law, Seattle University School of Law, and Lewis and Clark School of Law.

“I’m grateful to Dean Tony Varona and the faculty for facilitating my work, and for the law school having done so for many years,” he said.

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