Atiba R. Ellis
Associate Professor of Law (2009)
Associate Professor Atiba R. Ellis focuses his research and writing on the law of democracy with a specific interest in voting rights law, and the intersection of democratic theory with race, class, and other critical legal perspectives. Before coming to WVU, Professor Ellis taught Legal Writing at the Howard University School of Law where he also co-directed the school’s Alternative Spring Break service-learning project which provided volunteer legal services in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
Prior to entering the academy, Professor Ellis clerked for Judge James A. Beaty, Jr. of the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina. He then clerked for Judge Theodore A. McKee of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. Professor Ellis practiced in the general litigation section of Akin Gump Strauss Hauer and Feld, LLP, where he focused on antitrust litigation. While at Akin Gump, Professor Ellis regularly practiced pro bono in the Landlord-Tenant Division of the Superior Court of the District of Columbia and assisted pro bono in the drafting comments on the 2004 Georgia voter identification law which were filed with the Voting Rights Section of the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice. more...
Duke University School of Law
Juris Doctor, May 2000
- William Louis-Dreyfus Scholar
Duke University, Graduate School of Arts and Sciences
Masters of Arts, History, May 2000
- Master’s Thesis: The Veil of Neutrality: The Poll Tax in Virginia 1903-1966
Duke University, Trinity College of Arts and Sciences
Bachelors of Arts, cum laude, with Distinction in History, May 1996
- Honor’s Thesis: The Rhetoric of Liberty: John Wesley and the Political Rhetoric of the American Revolution
The Honorable Theodore A. McKee
United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
Sept. 2001-September 2002
The Honorable James A. Beaty, Jr.
United States District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina
Sept. 2000-July 2001
- The Cost of the Vote: Poll Taxes, Voter Identification Laws, and the Price of Democracy, 86 DENVER U. L. REV. 1023 (2009)
- Speaking for Our Community: An Empirical Analysis of How Felon Disenfranchisement Laws Impact Political Participation by Gender in the African American Community (work in progress)
- Star Trek and the Law: Reflections on a Special Enrichment Class for the First-Year Curriculum (with Okainer Christian Dark and Andrew W. Taslitz) (work in progress)
Teaching & Professional Experience
Howard University School of Law, Washington, D.C.
- Legal Writing Instructor, 2006 to 2009
Akin, Gump, Stmuss, Hauer & Feld, LLC Washington, D.C.
- Associate, October 2002 to May 2006
- Summer Associate, May 1999 to August 1999
Operation Understanding D.C., Washington, D.C.
- President of Board of Directors, Sept. 2006 to Sept. 2008
- Member, Board of Directors, May 2003 to May 2009.