An American legal scholar, diplomat, and author, former Ambassador Douglas W. Kmiec holds the Caruso Family Chair. He has focused the chair toward constitutional and human rights law. The Ambassador’s work has won much acclaim, including prestigious fellowship and honorary degree. Ambassador Kmiec is a popular speaker at commencements and other university wide conclaves.
Ambassador Kmiec came to this position after serving several years as dean and St. Thomas More Professor of Law at The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C., and for nearly two decades, on the law faculty at the University of Notre Dame. As dean at Catholic University, Professor Kmiec did what many said would be impossible; he greatly increased academic quality and student selectivity at the same time he deepened the school’s religious commitment. During his tenure, the law school moved into the top one hundred law schools in the U.S. News ranking from tier three. At Notre Dame, he was director of Notre Dame’s Center on Law and Government, and the founder of its Journal of Law, Ethics & Public Policy. Beyond the university setting, Kmiec served Presidents Ronald Reagan and George Bush during 1985-89 as constitutional legal counsel (Assistant and Deputy Assistant Attorney General, Office of Legal Counsel, U.S. Department of Justice). He was nominated for foreign service by President Barack Obama and unanimously confirmed by the Senate.