About Thomas Russell


Thomas D. Russell is an American law professor, historian, and attorney.  In his teaching and practice, Professor Russell combines justice, investigation, and analysis.

Prof. Russell teaches TortsContracts, Remedies, and American Legal History.  His empirical scholarship concerns contemporary tort litigation, the history of institutional racism, the legal history of slavery, and the history of personal injury litigation. 

Prof. Russell teaches his students to link their classroom study of law with the world around them.  The best lawyers are good investigators, excellent observers, and humane listeners.  Being smart helps a lot.  Good lawyers listen to their business clients rather than scaring them. 

As a lawyer, Prof. Russell seeks justice for injured people.  The goal is to assist people who have been injured in car crashes, truck injuries, falls, or other accidents become whole again.  Professor Russell negotiates settlements with insurance companies and files lawsuits when necessary.

Prof. Russell has also represented taxi companies.  He has represented new companies that seek to expand the competition in existing markets.  In Colorado, he has represented startup cab companies before the Public Utilities Commission.  In particular, he has represented Ethiopian, Somalian, Eritrean, Nigerian, and other African drivers who believe in the American Dream.  On their behalf, he was co-counsel with the Institute for Justice on a successful challenge to the PUC's interpretation of law before the state's Supreme Court.  This Supreme Court win has led to the PUC's recommendation that Mile High Cab receive authority to operate a taxi company in Colorado.  One radio talk show host called Professor Russell a Taxicab Warrior.

Prof. Russell was also co-counsel on Brinkman & Burd v. Long, the first marriage equality suit in Colorado.  This lawsuit overturned Colorado's statutory and constitutional bans on same-gender marriage.

The House of Russell includes all of Professor Russell's current and former students, his courses, and all his public talks.  

Prof. Russell earned his law degree and Ph.D. at Stanford University.  He has taught at the National University of Ireland Maynooth; University of California--Berkeley's Boalt Hall School of Law; Stanford University; University of California--Hastings College of Law; and The University of Texas School of Law, where he was Professor of Law and History.  He was a Fulbright Senior Specialist in Trinidad & Tobago in 2004.

A native of Pittsburgh, Prof. Russell has lived in Chicago, Palo Alto, San Francisco, Austin, Denver, Oakland, Gainesville, and Maynooth, County Kildare, Ireland.

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