Stephen H. Legomsky

Visiting Professor

Dr. Stephen H. Legomsky is the John S. Lehmann University Professor Emeritus at the Washington University School of Law in St. Louis.  Professor Legomsky took a leave of absence from 2011 to 2013 to serve as Chief Counsel of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, the immigration services agency in the Department of Homeland Security. After retiring in July 2015, he returned to Washington to serve as Senior Counselor to Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson.  He has testified before Congress many times while in the private sector, most recently in 2015 before both the House and the Senate Judiciary Committees on the legality of President Obama’s immigration executive actions. He has served as a consultant to the transition teams of Presidents Clinton and Obama, the first President Bush’s Commissioner of Immigration, the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees in Geneva, and several foreign governments, on immigration and refugee policies. His book "Immigration and Refugee Law and Policy," now in its sixth edition, has been the required text at 185 law schools since its inception. His other scholarly books, published by the Oxford University Press, include Immigration and the Judiciary – Law and Politics in Britain and America, and Specialized Justice.  Professor Legomsky has just published a science fiction novel, THE PICOBE DILEMMA, which explores what it means to be "living" and whether there are hazards in pursuing eternal life in a laboratory.  It is available at and on all the usual online bookstores. A former actuary, he graduated first in his class at the University of San Diego School of Law (Day Division) before earning the degree of Doctor of Philosophy from Oxford University.  Professor Legomsky has been appointed to visiting positions at Oxford University, Cambridge University, and other universities in the U.S., Mexico, New Zealand, Switzerland, Germany, Italy, Austria, Australia, Suriname, Singapore, Israel, and Portugal.  He clerked for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and headed a division of the Ninth Circuit central legal staff.  He has won several awards, including the American Immigration Lawyers Association’s annual award, given to one US immigration law professor, and Washington University’s Arthur Holly Compton Award, given annually to one university faculty member for career accomplishments. An elected member of the American Law Institute, he was the founding director of the law school’s Whitney Harris World Law Institute, founded and chaired the Immigration Law Section of the Association of American Law Schools, and has chaired the American Immigration Lawyers Association’s Law Professor’s Committee and the Refugee Committee of the American Branch of the International Law Association. In the past three years he has appeared several times on the PBS News Hour, NPR, Al Jazeera, foreign national news broadcasts, and several local NPR and other stations, and has been quoted in the NY Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, CNN, USA Today, US News & World Report, Associated Press, Reuters, Voice of America, Huffington Post, Politico, ABC News, NBC news, the Los Angeles Times, Bloomberg News, the National Law Journal, Foreign Policy Magazine, and other major news outlets.