DLP Program Now Part of NEU Graduate School of Education

The Doctor of Law and Policy Program is now a part of the CPS Graduate School of Education.

What does this mean?

The DLP program has, until now, been stand-alone within the College of Professional Studies.  That independence has offered certain advantages over the years.  They key advantage has been program autonomy from other CPS programs.

Yet, with advantages come some downsides.  One of the key downsides, in my view, has been that the DLP program hasn’t been able to access the  greater resources assigned to larger doctoral programs in CPS, in this case the Graduate School of Education.  Additionally, doctoral programs in the same college, but isolated from others in the same college may have varying standards.

I am a DLP graduate of the program during the standalone days.  I’ve also been a DLP program instructor under the standalone model and now under the GSE model. I’m happy to report that…so far…operating as a program of the GSE has proven to be a good move.  With greater access to seasoned GSE teaching and administrative professionals, along with the legacy DLP leadership which is now a part of GSE, the DLP program is now better-supported than before, and better-poised to grow.


Long overdue update

It’s been a while since I updated this blog.  Bad me.  Bad, bad, bad me.  So what’s new? I’ve been teaching in the College of Professional Studies for the last three quarters.

Masters level teaching…

I’ve been teaching in the College of Professional Studies for the last three quarters.  I’ve spent two quarters teaching in the Food Safety program (Masters level).  My focus, not surprisingly, has been on law and policy issues related to food safety, and mostly what happens when food safety is not the first priority. 

Doctoral level teaching…

I’m in the middle(ish) of teaching Constitutional Law and Policy in the Doctor of Law and Policy program.  I’m teaching the Seattle Cohort 2 of the very same program from where I earned my own doctorate back in 2016.  I have to thank JD LaRock for making my job so much easier by allowing me to adopt his syllabus…really his prior program framework…giving me a big leg up.    My students are great, and as usual, I learn from them as they learn from me.

I’ll be teaching in the Seattle section of the DLP program next quarter.  Then I’ll be teaching advance legal reasoning concepts to Seattle Cohort 1.  Are they in for fun or what?!  (Or what!)

Doctoral Thesis Supervision

I’m delighted to report that I’ve been appointed as chair of Laura Singletary’s thesis committee.  That means that I am her direct supervisor as she goes through the toughest part of the DLP program…her thesis.  I’m extremely lucky to have Dr. Ron Leatherbarrow as Laur’a Second Reader (and my First Advisor) as we jointly support Laura through her forest of research and writing.

That’s the update!


Opeoluwa Sotonwa, DLP Cohort X, Makes his Mark!

Almost Dr. Ope’ Sotonwa

I took great pleasure in reading about a milestone accomplishment by my DLP program mentee, Opeoluwa Sotonwa.  Ope’, as he’s known to his friends, is a doctoral candidate in the current DLP cohort, Cohort X.

Subject: Impact of my research in Missouri

The DLP program has impressed it on me that as a scholar-practitioner, we do not have to wait for the end of our research before fixing problems we found but could be attended with immediate alacrity.

When I collected my data in December, some key issues immediately jumped out of the box. It is about how law enforcement officers can properly identify Missourians who are deaf or hard of hearing. Based on my data, I drafted a bill to change Missouri Law to make it easier for law enforcement officers to identify DHH.

I am happy to share the news that the bill not only passed in the two chambers but is now a law in Missouri. Former Missouri Governor Eric Greitens signed the bill into law before he resigned yesterday. Here is a link to the press release from my office https://mcdhh.mo.gov/release-governor-signs-two-bills-for-deaf-and-hard-of-hearing-missourians/


Opeoluwa Sotonwa, DLP Class 2018

I’m so very proud of Ope’ and what he’s already accomplished even before being hooded as Dr. Sotonwa!


Three Docs and a Pink ’61 Cadillac

NEU Cohort VIII Doctors of Law and Policy Keenan Davis, Darin Detwiler, and yours truly met for brunch a few weeks ago in Portland, Oregon. We dined at the Cadillac Cafe, a well-known local spot (outstanding French Toast, by the way).

I flew up planning to spend the entire day with my brothers, but because of flight cancellations, I had to re-book my return flight to leave 4 hours sooner than planned.

Even through I only spent a fraction of the time I hoped to spend with these two indescribable guys, it was 157% worth it.


Teaching at NEU? It just might happen.

I’ve received a preliminary but strong invitation to teach one or two courses at Northeastern University related to regulatory law and policy development.

I happen to know a thing or three about those topics.

If the appointment goes through, it’s likely that I’ll start teaching in the Fall 2018 term.

I’m really jazzed about the possibility…I hope it becomes a reality.  More when I know.

DLP Program to Expand to NEU Seattle Campus

I just learned that the Doctor of Law and Policy program will be expanding to NEU’s Seattle Campus starting next year.  This is outstanding for a few reasons (off the top of my head).

More Accessible

First, this program will be far more accessible to mid-west and western students.  They will be able to fly in to Seattle the morning of the first day of each monthly intensive meeting rather than having to fly in to Boston the night before.  This will save something north of 20 hotel nights and two meals.  Let’s see…20 saved hotel nights x $225 = $4,500ish saved plus 40 meals on the road x $20 = $800ish saved = north of $5,000 saved for mid-west and western students who elect to attend the Seattle section rather than the Boston section.

More Exchanges

Second, and far more important in my mind, is that the opening of a second section allows for a broader cohort for the exchange of ideas and mutual support.

I am very excited to see how this second section plays out!  I hope to support it in whatever way best serves the program.


Congratulations to Doctor of Law and Policy Cohorts IX, X, and XI

Dear Cohort IX,

You have now completed your Doctor of Law and Policy studies at Northeastern University, and many of you have already defended your dissertations. The rest of you will do so shortly. On behalf of Cohort VIII, we congratulate every one of you.

Dear Cohort X,

Well, now you’re the seniors. You’ve already started your core writing, and there is an end in sight, albeit a bit blurred right now. Sit down, strap in, and drive forward. You can and will do it, and know that you’re doing it for the right reasons.

Dear Cohort XI,

You’ll soon be asking yourselves what you gotten yourselves into. That’s okay. You’ll figure it out by the end of this year. Hang in there. Enjoy the ride, if not the hard work needed to power the ride. In a few years you’ll realize just how important the program is for you professionally, and personally.

I strongly advise you to actively engage with the members of Cohort X. You’ll learn more, faster about the program from them than from any other source. Don’t isolate yourselves at mealtimes and break times. Sit at the tables with the members of Cohort X, ask them questions, and listen to their answers. You’ll be better off if you do.

To all of you in all three Cohorts, CONGRATULATIONS and full steam ahead!

Dr. Jonathan L. Kramer (Cohort VIII, ’16)

DLP Update From my Mentee, Opéoluwa Sotonwa

Opeoluwa Sotonwa, Member of DLP Cohort X

Opé Sotonwa
Member of DLP Cohort X

I have the great privilege of being the mentor of Opéoluwa Sotonwa, a member of NEU Doctor of Law and Policy program.  Opé is a member of Cohort X.  He is an advocate for the deaf and hearing impaired in a position that can truly make a difference; an accomplished attorney; a published author; and a particularly thoughtful individual.

I just finished a call with Opé during which he described his own progress through the DLP program, and recent and upcoming events. Frankly, I’m a bit envious of my young squire.

Okay, first some background. The DLP program has never been static.  It has continued to evolve in coursework, presentation, and faculty oversight over the past decade, arguably becoming something better with every passing year.

When I went through the program, which is taught in Boston, we spent two of our cohort “intensives” meetings in Washington D.C.  The D.C. trips focused on visits with law and policy leaders, including a meeting with a U.S. Senator, visits to policy think tanks, a visit to the U.S. Supreme Court, seminars with national and international law and policy leaders, and the like.

Okay, why am I envious of Opé?  Last month, during Cohort X’s visit to Washington D.C., they spent one-on-one quality time with Associate Justice Clarence Thomas.  How cool is that!  Reading the opinions then getting to Q&A with the man.  What a highlight!

Coming up last this year–to continue to make me envious of Opé–is the Cohort’s planned trip to London, England.  Heck, Cohort VIII never left the east coast, much less the continent.

Okay, I’m really happy for Opé and his mates in Cohort X.  I have got to figure out some way to get invited by the DLP program leaders to lecture in London to the Cohort about international telecommunications policy, which was the subject of my LL.M from Strathclyde University in Glasgow.  Perhaps they just need a chaperone. 

I’m donning my thinking cap right now!


Ted Johnson, DLP to Participate in the Election Postmortem at UCLA/Hammer 1/17/17

Dr. Ted Johnson

UCLA Hammer Forum
Election Postmortem
Tuesday Jan 17, 2017 7:30PM PST

“Reflecting on the 2016 presidential election, UCLA political scientist Lynn Vavreck looks at the effectiveness of campaign ads, public policy scholar Theodore R. Johnson discusses the changing role of the black electorate, and University of California, Irvine, political scientist Michael Tesler examines the connection between economic anxiety and racial resentment. Moderated by Ian S. Masters, journalist, documentary filmmaker, and KPFK 90.7 FM radio host.”

For more information visit: https://hammer.ucla.edu/programs-events/2017/01/election-postmortem/

I’ll be there.  Will you?

PS: There will be a live stream of the event.  See more at the link above.

Dr. Rachel A. Meidl

All of us in Cohort 8 are incredibly happy on hearing the news that Dr. Rachel A. Meidl has been nominated by President Obama to serve a 5-year term as a Member of the Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board.

rachaelhoodingRachel receiving her doctoral hood, September 28, 2016. (Photo credit: Northeastern University.)

Dr. Meidl is an outstanding candidate, with a tremendous background that will make her an invaluable member on the Board.