Rebecca Bratspies

Rebecca Bratspies

Rebecca Bratspies

Visiting Professor


Law School Complex 20th Street, NW between G & H Streets, NW Washington DC 20052

Rebecca Bratspies is a visiting Professor at GW. She is ordinarily a Professor at CUNY School of Law, where she is the founding director of the Center for Urban Environmental Reform. A scholar of environmental justice, and human rights, Professor Bratspies has written scores of law review articles. Her most recent book Naming Gotham: The Villains, Rogues and Heroes Behind New York Place Names, won the New York Public Historians 2023 award for Excellence in Local History. Professor Bratspies co-authored the textbook Environmental Justice: Law Policy and Regulation is used in schools across the country. She is perhaps best known for the Environmental Justice Chronicles—her award-winning environmental-justice comic books Mayah’s Lot, Bina’s Plant, and Troop’s Run, made in collaboration with artist Charlie LaGreca-Velasco. EPA recognized this work with the 2023 Clean Air Act Award for Excellence in Education/Outreach.

Professor Bratspies serves on NYC’s Environmental Justice Advisory Board, is a scholar with the Center for Progressive Reform and a member of the NYC Bar Environmental Committee. She served two appointed terms on EPA’s Children’s Health Protection Advisory Committee, ABA-SEER honored her work with its 2021 Commitment to Diversity and Justice Award. She was named the Center for International Sustainable Development Law’s 2022 International Legal Specialist for Human Rights Award, and her environmental justice advocacy has been awarded the PSC-CUNY “In It Together” Award, and the Eastern’ Queens Alliance’s Snowy Egret Award. Professor Bratspies clerked for the Hon. C. Arlen Beam on the 8th Circuit and was a Luce Scholar in Taipei, Taiwan.

In the News

"Did NY Leaders Leave Residents Unprepared for the Air Quality Crisis?"

Professor Bratspies was quoted in the New York Times.

"Skepticism Builds About City Hall Push for Giant Cricket Stadium in the Bronx"

Professor Bratspies was quoted in the City.

Book It with CA | July 2023

BookIt, CUNY TV show interview about Naming Gotham


BA, Biology, Wesleyan University; JD, University of Pennsylvania

  • 6208 - Property
  • Urban Environmental Justice