Northeastern Law’s LSSC/Legal Writing Program Welcomes Four New Faculty

Left to right: Elizabeth Knowles, Xander Meise, Andrew Haile and Rebecca Chapman.

07.29.21 — Northeastern Law’s Legal Skills in Social Context (LSSC) program is delighted to welcome four new faculty members: Elizabeth Knowles, Alexandra (Xander) Meise, Andrew Haile and Rebecca Chapman. Combining a wealth of both teaching and social justice experience, the group adds considerable strength to the innovative LSSC program, which teaches legal skills through a social justice lawyering lens, ensuring that graduates are prepared to use the law to address systemic oppression.

“We are thrilled to have this talented and committed group of thoughtful teachers, impactful legal scholars and social justice advocates joining the LSSC team,” said Professor Stephanie Hartung, who serves as the LSSC program administrator. “With diverse backgrounds including federal judicial clerkships, and public and private sector litigation and policy experience, this group of faculty comes prepared to deliver LSSC’s uniquely integrated approach to teaching the 21st-century lawyer. The LSSC course allows students to learn and develop fundamental lawyering skills while working in partnership with a nonprofit organization to address inequities in our legal system and advocate for social justice.”

Find out more about our new faculty:

Elizabeth Knowles
Associate Teaching Professor
San Diego State University, BA 2006
Thomas Jefferson School of Law, JD 2012

Elizabeth Knowles is an immigration and human rights advocate with a decade of experience helping immigrants successfully navigate our complex immigration system. Throughout her career, Knowles has assisted detained adults and children fleeing horrific persecution — experiences that fuel her desire to help bridge the access to justice gap that persists in our immigration system today. Knowles has practiced in both private and nonprofit settings, previously serving as executive director of the ABA Immigration Justice Project in San Diego, California, and most recently as director of the Immigration and Human Rights Clinic and clinical professor at the University of Akron School of Law, where she and her students represented detained non-citizens and successfully sought asylum for numerous individuals in removal proceedings.

Knowles has extensive experience defending individuals from deportation in immigration courts nationwide, before the Board of Immigration Appeals, and before the US Courts of Appeals. She earned her BA in fine arts from San Diego State University and her JD from Thomas Jefferson School of Law. Knowles serves on the board of directors for the ACLU of Ohio and is a member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association. She is a member of the State Bar of California and the US Courts of Appeals for the Sixth and the Ninth Circuit.

Alexandra (Xander) Meise
Associate Teaching Professor
Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs, MPA 2007
Georgetown University Law Center, 2007
Dartmouth College, AB 2001

Xander Meise researches the intersection of public and private international law, with a focus on the limits of sovereign power in emergency contexts. She is particularly interested in the contributions of democratic governance and economic development to rule of law and national security policy.

Meise comes to Northeastern from the University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School, where she served as a senior fellow to the school and its Center for Ethics and the Rule of Law. Previously, Meise spent over a decade in practice preventing and resolving international disputes, including in human rights litigation, in treaty-based international arbitrations and public international law disputes, and in designing and implementing legal reforms and human rights best practices. She continues to be very active in legal capacity building, especially in dispute resolution on the African continent through the Research Arbitration Africa initiative. In July 2021, she was named the Truman Center for National Policy's inaugural Visiting Senior Fellow for Climate and Energy Security.

Meise’s career has spanned five continents, including work for the Pre-Trial Chamber of the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia through the United Nations Assistance to the Khmer Rouge Trials (UNAKRT), for the US Department of State at posts in Europe, and in international development in countries such as Yemen and Bosnia. Meise has taught international human rights law at Georgetown University Law Center (GULC) and was a non-resident fellow of the Columbia Center on Sustainable Investment (a joint Center of Columbia Law School and The Earth Institute at Columbia University). She also clerked for the Honorable Jeffrey R. Howard on the US Court of Appeals for the First Circuit.

Meise is a political partner of the Truman National Security Project and a member of the Carnegie New Leaders program of the Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs. She holds degrees from Dartmouth College, Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs, and GULC, and was a Fulbright Fellow at the Akademia e Arteve in Albania (2001-02).

Andrew Haile
Visiting Assistant Professor
Middlebury College, BA 2007
Boston College Law School, JD 2015

Prior to joining Northeastern, Andrew Haile was an assistant attorney general in the Constitutional and Administrative Law Division of the Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey ’98. In that capacity, he litigated appeals in state and federal court on behalf of Massachusetts state agencies in a variety of subject areas. He first joined the Attorney General’s Office through its Honors Fellowship Program.

Haile received his JD magna cum laude from Boston College Law School and his BA from Middlebury College. He clerked for the Hon. Paul Barbadoro in the US District Court for New Hampshire. Prior to law school, he worked as a Peace Corps volunteer in Guinea, West Africa, and was an immigration counselor for immigrants and refugees at Elon Law School in Greensboro, North Carolina.

Rebecca Chapman
Social Justice Teaching Fellow
Cornell University, BA 2009
Columbia University, MA 2011
Harvard Law School, JD 2015

Rebecca Chapman is a criminal defense and civil rights advocate, with extensive experience defending against police and state abuses of power. Prior to starting her teaching career, Chapman worked as a staff attorney in the Criminal Defense Practice of the Bronx Defenders. As a public defender in the Bronx, she represented hundreds of clients facing felony and misdemeanor charges. She continued her criminal and civil rights advocacy practice with two Boston boutique law firms, Fick & Marx and J.W. Carney and Associates, and most recently at the Civil Liberties Defense Center.

Chapman received her JD from Harvard Law School in 2015. While at Harvard, Chapman was active in student organizations and clinics. She represented clients charged with crimes as a student attorney with the Criminal Justice Institute and was a member of the Harvard Defenders. Chapman was an editor of Unbound: Harvard Journal of the Legal Left and a co-founder of the Harvard Law School Feminist Collective. Chapman also has a MA in English and comparative literature from Columbia University.

About Northeastern University School of Law

The nation’s leader in experiential legal education since 1968, Northeastern University School of Law offers the longest-running, most extensive experience-based legal education program in the country and is a national leader in legal education reform. Founded with cooperative legal education as the cornerstone of its program, Northeastern guarantees its students unparalleled practical legal work experiences. All students participate in full-time legal placements, and can choose from the more than 1,500 employers worldwide participating in the school’s signature Cooperative Legal Education Program. The future of legal education since 1968, Northeastern University School of Law blends theory and practice, providing students with a unique set of skills and experience to successfully practice law.

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