Charlotte Garden

Charlotte Garden

Co-Associate Dean for Research and Faculty Development Professor of Law

 Sullivan Hall 322


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  • Labor and Employment Law
  • Constitutional Law
  • Legislation & Regulation


  • B.A., with great distinction, McGill University, 2000
  • J.D., cum laude, New York University School of Law, 2003
  • LL.M., with distinction, Georgetown University Law Center, 2010


Charlotte Garden is an expert in labor & employment law. She is an Associate Professor (with tenure) at the Seattle University School of Law, where she teaches Labor Law, Employment Law, Constitutional Law, Appellate Litigation, and Legislation & Regulation. She occasionally teaches in the Civil Rights Amicus Clinic and is the Litigation Director at the School's Korematsu Center for Law & Equality. Since 2017, she has been the Law School’s Co-Associate Dean for Research & Faculty Development.

Professor Garden’s scholarship focuses on the intersection of work/labor/technology and the Constitution. Her articles have appeared in the Emory Law Journal, Boston University Law Review, George Washington Law Review, Fordham Law Review, William & Mary Law Review, the University of Chicago Legal Forum, and the Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review. She is a co-author of two leading labor & employment law casebooks:Modern Labor Law in the Private and Public Sectors, with Seth Harris, Anne Marie Lofaso, Joe Slater, and Dick Griffin, Jr.; and Employment Law Cases and Materials, with Mark Rothstein, Lance Liebman, Kimberly Yuracko, and Paul Secunda. In 2019, Cambridge University Press will publish her edited volume,The Cambridge Handbook of U.S. Labor Law (co-edited with Rick Bales).

In addition to her teaching and scholarship, Professor Garden’s external service includes serving as Chair-Elect of the Executive Committee of the AALS Section on Labor Relations and Employment Law, and co-chairing a working group of the Clean Slate Project at Harvard Law School’s Labor & Worklife Program. She is a co-editor of the Work Law section for the online legal journal JOTWELL, a Senior Contributor to OnLabor, and a Contributor to Take Care. She regularly authors amicus briefs in cases affecting unions and workers, including in Janus v. AFSCME, Chamber of Commerce v. City of Seattle, Vergara v. California, Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association, M&G Polymers USA, LLC v. Tackett, and Harris v. Quinn.

Professor Garden regularly writes opinion and analysis pieces for practitioners and non-academic audiences. She regularly publishes case previews and argument/opinion analysis for SCOTUSblog, and her opinion pieces have appeared in outlets such as The Atlantic, NBCThink, and the blog of the American Constitution Society. Her legal analysis is regularly featured in the mainstream media, on platforms such as the New York Times, NPR, Bloomberg, the Washington Post, The Nation, and Politico.

Prior to joining Seattle University, Professor Garden was a teaching fellow in the Appellate Litigation Clinic at Georgetown University Law Center, where she also received her LL.M. Professor Garden then clerked for Judge Thomas L. Ambro of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. She is graduate of NYU School of Law and McGill University.


Avoidance Creep(in progress)

Speech Inequality IND. L.J. – (in progress)

The Seattle Solution: Collective Bargaining by For-Hire Drivers & Prospects for Pro-Labor Federalism, HARV. L. & POL'Y REV. (2018)

Disrupting Work Law: Disrupting Work Law: Arbitration in the Gig Economy, 2017 CHI. L. FORUM (2018).

The Deregulatory First Amendment at Work, 51 HARV. C.R.-C.L. L. REV. 323 (2016).

Religious Employers & Labor Law: Bargaining in Good Faith?, 95 B.U. L. REV. 109 (2016)

Toward Politically Stable NLRB Lawmaking: Rulemaking vs. Adjudication, 64 EMORY L.J. 1467 (2015). Meta Rights, 83 FORDHAM L. REV. 855 (2014)Selected for peer review in JOTWELL, available here

Citizens United & the First Amendment of Labor Law,43 STETSON L. REV. 571 (2014).

Unions & Campaign Finance Litigation, 14 NEVADA L.J. 364 (2014).

"So Closely Intertwined": Labor Interests and Racial Solidarity, 81 GEO. WASH. L. REV. 1135 (2013) (with Nancy Leong).

Union Made: Labor's Litigation for Social Change, 88 TULANE L. REV. 193 (2013).

Teaching for America: Unions and Academic Freedom, 43 U. TOL. L. REV. 563 (2012).

Citizens, United and Citizens United: The Future of Labor Speech Rights?, 53 WM. & MARY L. REV. 1 (2011). Selected for peer review in JOTWELL, available here

Labor Values are First Amendment Values: Why Union Comprehensive Campaigns are Protected Speech, 79 FORDHAM L. REV. 2617 (2011). Cited in Cox et al., LABOR LAW, 572 (15th ed. 2011).


In the News

How companies use predictive analytics to get ahead of union drives, November 03, 2021 | Morning Brew

Professor Charlotte Garden's scholarship on employer surveillance is cited in this article.

Inside Nick Rolovich's downfall at Washington State over the COVID-19 vaccine, October 27, 2021 | ESPN

Professor Charlotte Garden analyzes a potential First Amendment defense for noncompliance with a vaccine mandate.

Washington State football coach Nick Rolovich's status unclear ahead of Monday vaccine deadline, October 16, 2021 |

Professor Charlotte Garden says applying the usual standards for religious belief accommodation is considerably more complicated with a vaccine mandate.

Be careful, getting fired over a vaccine mandate may cost you unemployment aid, August 05, 2021 | PolitiFact

Professor Charlotte Garden says workers could forfeit unemployment benefits if they're fired for refusing a vaccine.

Dems' Bid To Ban Workplace Arbitration Faces Uphill Fight, August 05, 2021 | Law360

Professor Charlotte Garden says arbitration makes it more difficult to resolve unsettled employment law issues.

Lawmakers Look to Spruce Up Gig Work Rather Than Replace It, March 18, 2021 | Bloomberg

Professor Charlotte Garden says the compromise measure in Connecticut has serious shortcomings.

The Tech Industry Is Abuzz About the PRO Act. What Is It?, March 18, 2021 | The Markup

Professor Charlotte Garden says the PRO Act wouldn't override other definitions of "employee."

Google Union's Future Likely Hinges on Tech Giant's Response, January 06, 2021 | Bloomberg Law

The union can work creatively to put pressure on Google, says Professor Charlotte Garden.

How to Counteract the Court, November 24, 2020 | The American Prospect

Congress hasn't had the political energy to override the U.S. Supreme Court, says Professor Charlotte Garden.