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Friday, May 13, 2016
A Tribute to Michael Ratner
Michael Ratner, for decades President of the Center for Constitutional Rights in New York and a long-time faculty supervisor of the Allard K. Lowenstein International Human Rights Clinic at Yale Law School, passed away at age 72 on May 11, 2016. His New York Times obituary is here. Mr. Ratner helped found and guide the Lowenstein Clinic from its inception in 1990 until 1996, and mentored scores of Yale Law students to pursue careers and projects in social justice and human rights. He was one of the first lawyers to challenge the legality of detention of Haitian refugees on Guantanamo in 1991, and he continued that work, alongside many other human rights and civil liberties matters, until his death, helping to secure the Supreme Court's recognition of the right to habeas corpus on Guantanamo after 9/11. In a recent tribute, his longtime co-teacher, Sterling Professor of International Law Harold Hongju Koh, called him "the leading progressive lawyer of his generation."
Submit a tribute
There has been an outpouring of affection and gratitude in Michael's memory, and various memorials are being planned. The Lowenstein Clinic is gathering its own archive of memories of Michael Ratner. If you would like to contribute your own memories of Michael, please email your comments to the Lowenstein Clinic.
To view the list of tributes that the Lowenstein Clinic is posting, please visit this memorial page, which will continue to be updated.
*Photo credit Jonathan McIntosh