Catherine J. Ross

Catherine Ross
Fred C. Stevenson Research Professor
2000 H Street, NW
Washington, District Of Columbia 20052

Catherine J. Ross specializes in constitutional law (with particular emphasis on the First Amendment), family law, and legal and policy issues concerning children. Her book, Lessons in Censorship: How Schools and Courts Subvert Students' First Amendment Rights (Harvard University Press, 2015) was named the Best Book on the First Amendment by Concurring Opinions’ First Amendment News, and won the Critics’ Choice Book Award from the American Education Studies Association. Professor Ross has been a co-author of Contemporary Family Law (Thomson/West) since the First Edition; the Fourth Edition was published in 2015. 

In 2015-2016, Professor Ross was a Visiting Scholar at the Harvard School of Education. She was a Member of the School of Social Science at the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton from 2008-2009. Professor Ross has taught as a visiting professor at the University of Pennsylvania, Boston College (where she held joint appointments in the School of Education and the History Department) and St. John’s School of Law in New York. 

An elected Fellow of the American Bar Foundation, Professor Ross is former chair of the ABA’s Steering Committee on the Unmet Legal Needs of Children, former chair of the Section on Law and Communitarianism of the Association of American Law Schools, and has served on a wide variety of ABA committees. She has served on the editorial boards of the Family Courts Review and the Family Law Quarterly.

Prior to entering legal academia, Professor Ross was a litigator at Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison in New York, where she won major impact litigation on behalf of the city’s homeless population. Before attending Yale Law School, Professor Ross was on the faculty of the Yale Child Study Center, and the Bush Center on Child Development and Social Policy at Yale. 

Professor Ross teaches Constitutional Law, Family Law, and Child, Family and State.

Curriculum Vitae     Publications


BA, PhD, JD, Yale University

In the News

"The Shadow of Dismissal" (In French)

January 21, 2018

Catherine J. Ross participates in a Q&A with La Presse about Donald Trump, impeachment motives against the president, and more. 

"Colleges Brace for Tumult in 2018 as White Supremacists Demand a Stage"

January 17, 2018

Catherine J. Ross is quoted in The New York Times about whether universities should allow controversial speakers to have a platform on campus.

"Tom Steyer on Impeachment Efforts"

December 06, 2017

Catherine J. Ross appeared on C-SPAN2 and spoke about the efforts to impeach President Trump.

"Is It 'Against the Law' For NFL Players to Kneel For the National Anthem, as Roy Moore Said? No"

October 19, 2017

Catherine J. Ross is quoted in PolitiFact about the First Amendment and whether NFL players have the right to kneel during the national anthem.

"Roy Moore Claims 'It's Against the Law' for Players to Kneel During National Anthem"

October 18, 2017

Catherine J. Ross is quoted by CBS News about whether there's any valid interpretation that it's illegal to kneel for the national anthem.