It is our great pleasure to introduce our new IntLawGrrls contributor Lisa Davis! Lisa is an Associate Professor of Law and Co-Director of the Human Rights and Gender Justice Clinic (formerly named International Women’s Human Rights Clinic, founded by Prof. Rhonda Copelon). She has written and reported extensively on human rights and gender issues, including on women’s rights and LGBTIQ rights, with a focus on peace building and security issues in conflict and disaster settings. Lisa has testified before U.S. Congress, U.K. Parliament, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights and various international human rights bodies. In 2016, she was elected by her peers to deliver the civil society statement for the U.N. Security Council’s open debate on the use of sexual violence in conflict situations.
In the case Karen Atala and Daughters v Chile, Professor Davis co-authored the amicus curiae brief arguing that sexual orientation and gender identity are protected classes under international law. In 2012, the Inter-American Court of Human Rights issued a groundbreaking decision, providing for an explicit prohibition of discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity. In 2010, Professor Davis served as lead counsel for the Inter-American Commission petition on behalf of displaced Haitian women and girls, which resulted in the Commission’s first-ever precautionary measures decision recognizing state responsibility to prevent third-party gender-based violence. She was subsequently awarded the 2011 People’s Choice Gavel Award by her peers for the decision.
Prior to joining CUNY Law, she established the advocacy department at MADRE, an international women’s human rights organization, where she developed the legal advocacy platform to advance women’s human rights in peace-building and security issues. Lisa continues to serve as MADRE’s Senior Legal Advisor.