Laura R. McNeal

Professor of Law


Professor Laura McNeal joined the University of Louisville Brandeis School of Law as tenure track faculty in Fall 2012. She was promoted to Associate Professor of Law with tenure in December 2017. She teaches civil procedure, education law and employment discrimination courses. Her scholarly interests examine issues of access and equity in employment and education law, with a particular emphasis on issues of access and equity for individuals from traditionally marginalized populations. Professor McNeal has contributed to the national debate on law, education policy, and race relations through op-eds and radio and television news features for CNN, CBS, NBC, NPR and various other news networks.

Professor McNeal has worked with the Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race and Justice at Harvard Law School since 2012 where she conducts national empirical legal studies that explore issues of access and equity in education, employment and criminal law. She also conducts implicit bias workshops for educators, lawyers, judges, non-profit organizations and various other sectors. Dr. McNeal is currently conducting a national prosecuting attorney study through her work with the Charles Hamilton Houston Institute that examines prosecutorial decision-making and incentive structures. Dr. McNeal has served as an invited speaker and panelist at several conferences such as the Law and Education Institute at Penn State University Dickenson School of Law, and Harvard Law School’s, Advocates for Education Conference. Recently, she served as an Expert Witness for the Indiana Advisory Committee to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights: Hearings on School-to-Prison Pipeline. She has received numerous fellowships, honors, and awards, including the Washington University Employment Law Achievement Award and a two-year Stafford Faculty Fellowship for the National Institute on Leadership, Disability and Students Placed at Risk. Lastly, Dr. McNeal was inducted into the Illinois State University Hall of Fame for her innovative work in the area of education law and policy. During the summer she serves as a Guest Lecturer at Columbia University where she teaches a Law and Ethics course.

Prior to teaching at the Brandeis School of Law, Professor McNeal served as an Assistant Professor of Urban Education in the highly recognized Department of Teacher Education and Educational Policy at Michigan State University. She also served on the faculty at Georgia State University where she taught education law, policy and leadership courses. While at these institutions, Professor McNeal helped develop the curriculum for a $5 million education pipeline program grant to help at risk students successfully matriculate into college. Additionally, during her career, she has contributed more than 35 peer reviewed articles, book chapters and presentations to the education field.