J.D. 1976, Northeastern University Law School
Areas of Expertise
Carolyn Patty Blum oversees the Cardozo Law Institute in Holocaust and Human Rights. In addition she is the Director of the Human Rights and Atrocity Prevention Clinic at Cardozo.
Professor Blum is a Clinical Professor of Law Emerita at Berkely Law, University of California, where she founded and directed the International Human Rights Law Clinic. She practiced in a legal services agency serving immigrants and refugees for eight years prior to initiating the clinical program in immigration and asylum law at Berkeley Law, University of California in 1984. She also served as the supervisor of the law school's practitioner-supervised and judicial extern field placement programs. Professor Blum was the guiding force behind the creation of Boalt's International Human Rights Law Clinic, which opened in 1998 as part of the school's Center for Clinical Education. Professor Blum retired from Berkeley in 2002 to move to New York and now holds the title Clinical Professor of Law Emerita.
Professor Blum is a Visiting Fellow at Kellogg College, University of Oxford and supervises the preparation of the dissertation in the Oxford Masters in International Human Rights Law Program, among other duties.
Professor Blum also is as an independent human rights consultant to academic, philanthropic and human rights organizations. She currently serves as the Senior Legal Adviser to the Center for Justice and Accountability, a San Francisco-based NGO that seeks to bring human rights abusers to justice. Professor Blum has worked with CJA since its founding on all of its cases seeking justice and accountability for torture, massacres, and extra-judicial killings during the Salvadoran state terror of the 1980s, including three successful Alien Tort Statute/Torture Victim Protection Act cases against top military commanders and the Jesuit massacre case currently pending before the Spanish National Court. She has represented CJA clients in immigration proceedings for the removal of two former Ministers of Defense of El Salvador. In addition, Professor Blum has worked on CJA’s case against one of the perpetrators of the notorious “Caravan of Death” under Augusto Pinochet in Chile.
The recipient of two Ford Foundation research grants, Professor Blum has been involved in precedent-setting litigation involving Central American and Haitian refugees, as well as women refugees. She has received three prestigious professional awards: two from the National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild and one from the American Immigration Lawyers Association.
Professor Blum’s scholarship dovetails with the work described above, including a special emphasis on transitional justice, the use of national courts to achieve accountability, the role of media in human rights, the development of the doctrine of command responsibility, and U.S. refugee law. Her government service has included a stint on the Clinton-Gore Transition Team.
Carolyn Patty Blum in the news
- Jul 14, 2016 NY Times: 'Salvadoran Court Overturns Wartime Amnesty, Paving Way for Prosecutions'; Professor Carolyn Patty Blum Worked on Salvadoran Human Rights Cases
- Jun 9, 2016 Cardozo Law’s Human Rights and Atrocity Prevention Clinic Assists Win in European Court of Human Rights Nondiscrimination Case
- Feb 11, 2016 Cardozo School of Law and The International Center for Transitional Justice Partner on a Project on the Missing and Disappeared
- Feb 5, 2016 Judge - El Salvadoran Colonel Can Face Charges in Spain; Carolyn Patty Blum, Director of CLIHHR, Worked on the Case with the CJA
- Jun 12, 2015 Professor Carolyn Patty Blum Appointed Interim Director of the Cardozo Law Institute in Holocaust and Human Rights (CLIHHR)
- Jun 11, 2015 Cardozo Law Hosts 2015 Human Rights Clinicians Conference
- Mar 16, 2015 Professor Carolyn Patty Blum in the NY Times: General in El Salvador Killings in ’80s Can Be Deported, Court Rules
- Mar 13, 2015 Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law Launches Cardozo Law Institute in Holocaust and Human Rights