Northeastern Law Receives AALS Award for LGBTQ+ Inclusive Excellence


11.02.22 — Northeastern University School of Law is the recipient of the 2022 LGBTQ+ Inclusive Excellence Institutional Award from the Association of American Law Schools (AALS) Section on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Issues (SOGII). This award recognizes innovative contributions to the inclusion of LGBTQ+ people in the legal academy and the legal profession more broadly.   

“We are thrilled with this recognition,” said Dean James Hackney. “Inclusiveness has always been at the heart of our law school and there is a good reason that many years ago, our students put up a banner in our commons that reads, ‘Queerest Law School in the Nation.’ We are so thankful that the AALS SOGII section recognizes both the need to celebrate and recognize our LGBTQ+ colleagues and students in the legal academy and to bestow this award on our community.” 

According to the AALS Section on SOGII, Northeastern earned this honor because of its “long legacy of inclusion, expanding access and breaking barriers as well as its well-deserved reputation as the premiere training ground for LGBTQ+ law students who enter practice and change the world for LGBTQ+ people.” This fall, 30 percent of incoming JD and FlexJD students at Northeastern Law self-identified as LGBTQ+. 

Northeastern’s students and graduates are well known for their LGBTQ+ advocacy. Graduates of the law school include: 

  • Mary Bonauto ’87, Civil Rights Project Director, GLAD; considered the “architect” of gay marriage, she argued Obergefell v. Hodges before the U.S. Supreme Court
  • Richard Burns ’83, former Executive Director, The LGBT Community Center, New York
  • Kevin Cathcart ’82, former Executive Director, Lambda Legal
  • Maura Healey ’98, Attorney General, Massachusetts; Democratic Party candidate for Massachusetts governor 
  • Chase Strangio ’10, Deputy Director for Transgender Justice, ACLU LGBT & HIV Project; one of the nation’s leading transgender rights advocates 
  • Urvashi Vaid ’83, author, Virtual Equality; legendary leader and visionary who passed away this year 

The award will be presented during the AALS annual meeting in San Diego in January 2023.

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. Northeastern guarantees its students unparalleled practical legal work experiences through its signature Cooperative Legal Education Program. More than 1,000 employers worldwide in a wide range of legal, government, nonprofit and business organizations participate in the program. With a focus on social justice and innovation, Northeastern University School of Law blends theory and practice, providing students with a unique set of skills and experiences to successfully practice law.

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