Suzanne Lachelier


United States
LLM Candidate ’24

Suzanne has specialized in criminal and humanitarian law, both as a federal public defender and a former Navy reserve lawyer. She has managed complex terrorism cases in Guantanamo, including a death penalty case.

As a Navy reservist, she was hand-picked for her fluency in French to lead a security cooperation mission in Mali, working with the Ministry of Defense and other Malian authorities to examine Malian criminal justice processes. She also conducted humanitarian law trainings in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Chad, and facilitated diplomatic visits of senior military justice delegations from the DRC and Mali.

Suzanne began her legal career on Capitol Hill, as legal counsel to a subcommittee of the U.S. House. She handled policy and legislative drafting under the Clean Air Act and Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, working with disparate groups to build coalitions. She helped design and deploy a campaign that yielded bi-partisan support for legislation passed in the House.

Suzanne received a JD from Boston University School of Law, and a BS in biology and political science from Union College, Schenectady, NY. She is Secretary on the board of Learning Life, a nonprofit that develops innovative learning communities aimed at widening and deepening participation in democracy and diplomacy. She is a citizen advocate for Mercy for Animals’ initiative to increase plant-based options for military personnel. Working with the Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries and the Animal Defense Partnership, she also has initiated a project to identify state laws and regulations affecting animal sanctuaries.

“I am especially interested in creative methods of collaboration for growing wildlife ecosystems, and also in finding ways to highlight for decisions-makers the connections between plant-based diets, climate change, and farm animal welfare. I am excited to use this unique LLM and my experience to advance these goals.”