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Law Faculty

Aliza Kaplan

Professor of Lawyering and Director, Criminal Justice Reform Clinic

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Erskine B. Wood Hall

Professor Aliza B. Kaplan teaches Lawyering and is the Director of the Criminal Justice Reform Clinic (CJRC) which operates in collaboration with the Oregon Justice Resource Center, an organization that uses an integrative advocacy approach to criminal justice reform. She is the co-founder of the Oregon Innocence Project, an organization that works to exonerate the wrongfully convicted. Kaplan regularly works on wrongful conviction cases, represents the Oregon Innocence Project in the community, and is an active board member of the Oregon Justice Resource Center. She is also a documentary film producer — the 2007 film she co-produced, My Country, My Country, was nominated for an Academy Award, and her 2010 film, The Oath, was nominated for two news Emmy Awards.

Prior to teaching at Lewis & Clark, Kaplan was an Associate Professor of Legal Skills at Brooklyn Law School. She was also the Deputy Director of the national Innocence Project and co-founded the New England Innocence Project. She was an associate at Testa, Hurwitz and Thibeault in Boston and served as a law clerk to the Honorable Judge Joseph E. Irenas of the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey.

Professor Kaplan was the 2015 recipient of the Leo Levenson Award for Excellence in Teaching. She gives presentations on and researches/writes in the areas of death penalty, wrongful convictions, asylum law and public interest lawyering.

Specialty Areas & Course Descriptions

Academic Credentials

  • B.A. 1991 The George Washington University
  • J.D. 1999 Northeastern University School of Law



  • Contemporary Perspectives on Wrongful Conviction: An Introduction to the 2015 Innocence Network Conference, Orlando, Florida, 3 Tex. A&M L. Rev. 179 (with Valena Beety and Robert Schehr) (Forthcoming 2015)
  •  Who Could it Be Now? Challenging the Reliability of First Time In-Court Identifications  After State v.  Henderson and State v. Lawson, J. Crim. L. & Criminology (with Janis Puracal) (Forthcoming Spring 2015).
  • How to Build a Public Interest Lawyer (And Help All Law Students Along the Way), 15 Loy. J. Pub. Int. L.153  (2013)
  • Oregon’s Death Penalty: The Practical Reality, 17 Lewis & Clark L. Rev. 1 (Spring 2013).
  • Disabled and Disserved: The Right to Counsel for Mentally Disabled Aliens in Removal Proceedings, 26 Geo. Immigr. L.J. 523 (Spring 2012)
  • Think [and Practice] Like a Lawyer: Research Instruction for the New Millennials, 8 Leg. Comm. & Rhetoric 153 (Fall 2011) (with Kathleen Darvil). (Awarded 2012 Outstanding Article by the Academic Law Libraries Special Interest Section (ALL-SIS) of the American Associations of Law Libraries (AALL)).
  • A New Approach to Ineffective Assistance of Counsel in Removal Proceedings, 62 Rutgers L. Rev. 345 (Winter 2010). 
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Aliza Kaplan’s office is located in room 136 of Wood Hall.


voice 503-768-6721

Aliza Kaplan Professor of Lawyering and Director, Criminal Justice Reform Clinic

Lewis & Clark Law School 10015 S.W. Terwilliger Boulevard MSC 51 Portland OR 97219 USA

45.452616658577; -122.67846637896