House of Russell


Thomas D. Russell is an attorney, law professor, and historian. He teaches TortsContracts, Remedies, American Legal History, and a seminar called Personal Injury Law. For several years, he taught a seminar that was part clinic, part externship, and part incubator in which he litigated cases with students with an aim toward equipping them to open their own practices. He wants to teach that course again.

During the spring of 2023, Professor Russell is a visiting professor at Washington University in St. Louis. Professor Russell has visited or held a permanent appointment at many top law schools, including the University of Florida Levin College of Law (Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Fall 2023), Stanford Law School, Berkeley Law, and The University of Texas at Austin. 

Professor Russell has taught outside the United States. Ireland was Prof. Russell's home for the 2012-13 academic year when he was a visiting professor in the Department of Law at the National University of Ireland, MaynoothHe served as a Fulbright Senior Scholar in Trinidad & Tobago, where he taught Restorative Justice at the University of the West Indies—St. Augustine.

Prof. Russell holds a Ph.D. in History and a law degree from Stanford University and an undergraduate degree from Northwestern University. 

Prof. Russell is a lawyer licensed to practice law in Colorado and California. Prof. Russell was co-counsel on Colorado's first marriage equality lawsuit, which overturned statutory and constitutional bans on same-sex marriage.

In one way or another, much of his law practice has involved transportation.  Attorney Russell seeks justice for people injured in truck and car crashes as well as other motor vehicle accidents. Before 2013, he also represented startup taxi companies before the Colorado Public Utilities Commission. 

In January 2018, he performed the role of Plaintiff’s Counsel in Gilbert & Sullivan’s Trial by Jury as part of the Sturm Theatre’s inaugural production.

Prof. Russell’s current scholarly project, Frivolous Defenses, criticizes how insurance defense counsel answer personal injury complaints. As a legal historian, he has focused on race and law in the 19th and 20th centuries, particularly slavery and the desegregation and integration of American universities. (The Sweatt v. Painter Archive is included in this web site.) The legal history of torts and personal injury is also a specialty.  He is an archive rat and empirical legal scholar.  

The House of Russell includes all of Russell’s classes, his public talks, and his current and former students around the globe.

Russell is a frequent media commenter regarding legal issues. identified him as one of the most intriguing people for July 16, 2010. Russell once was a candidate for the Colorado House of Representatives and has been active in health-care reform. A native of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Russell splits time betwteen Gainesville, Florida; Denver, Colorado; and Oakland, California.

See Professor Russell’s cv.

© Thomas D. Russell 2024