Professor of Law
College of Law
University of Idaho
P.O. Box 83720
Boise, ID 83720-0015
- J.D., 2001 (cum laude), Loyola University School of Law, New Orleans
- B.S., 1997, Trinity College, Hartford, CT
Shaakirrah R. Sanders became the first African-American and second person of color to achieve the rank of full professor at the University of Idaho College of Law in 2018. Professor Sanders teaches courses related to U.S. constitutional law and criminal procedure. She previously coached or co-coached the National Moot Court Competition teams in Boise and Moscow. She serves as faculty advisor for the ACS and ACLU Student Law Groups. She previously served as faculty advisor for the Idaho Critical Legal Studies Journal and the Public Interest Law Group.
Professor Sanders has published scholarship on felony sentencing reform; civil and criminal jury trial rights; religious freedom; and agriculture security or “ag-gag” legislation. Her work has or will appear in Cornell Law Review, Wake Forest Law Review, Irvine Law Review, Hastings Law Journal, William and Mary Bill of Rights Journal, and University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform among other publications. She also contributed commentary for edited collections, including Feminist Judgments: Rewritten Torts Opinions; The Contested Place of Religion in Family Law; Mass Communication Law in Idaho; and Feminist Judgments: Rewritten Opinions of the United States Supreme Court.
Professor Sanders enjoys presenting at legal scholarship conferences in her areas of law teaching. She occasionally testifies before the Idaho Legislature and regularly gives CLE, university, and public service presentations. She has appeared in Idaho related news stories in The New York Times, Washington Post, Associated Press, and Al Jazeera America. She has also provided legal commentary for Excited Utterance: The Evidence Law and Proof Podcast, as well many local and regional radio and television news broadcasts and publications.
Prior to joining the College of Law, Professor Sanders served as a judicial law clerk for the Honorable Ivan L.R. Lemelle in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana and the Honorable Lavenski R. Smith, current Chief Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit. She practiced in Seattle, Washington at K&L Gates and the Public Defender Association. She also practiced in New Orleans, Louisiana at Locke Lord.
Professor Sanders attended Loyola University New Orleans College of Law where she served as Index/Casenote Editor on the Loyola Law Review. She was named a William Crowe Scholar upon graduation. In 2004, she was named a Pegasus Scholar and participated in a legal exchange program between the United States and the United Kingdom. She received a B.S. in Psychology from Trinity College in Hartford, Connecticut and recently served a five-year term as president of her 20th Reunion Committee.
Professor Sanders has inactive bar admissions in Louisiana, New York, and Washington, as well as various federal district and circuit courts. She serves as a board officer for the ACLU of Idaho and the Richard C. Fields American Inns of Court. She formerly chaired the AALS Section on Constitutional Law (2018-19) and currently chairs the Idaho State Advisory Committee for the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights.
- Confrontation rights at felony sentencing
- Criminal and civil jury trial rights
- Equal protection: race, gender, and sexuality
- First Amendment: speech, press, association and religious freedom
- Substantive due process: marriage, family autonomy, and reproductive freedom
- Voting rights
Civil Jury Trial Right
- Rewritten Opinion of Simpkins v. Grace Brethren Church, in FEMINIST JUDGMENTS: REWRITTEN TORTS OPINIONS --- (Cambridge University Press, forthcoming 2019)
- Deconstructing Juryless Fact-Finding in Civil Cases, 25 Wm. & Mary Bill Rts. J. 235 (2016)
- Cited in Beason v. IE Miller Services, Inc., --- P.3d ---, 2019 WL 1772328, at *15 n.60 (Ok. 2019) (Edmondson, J., dissenting)
- Featured on Juries Blog
- Uncapping Compensation in the Gore Due Process Analysis, 24 Wm. & Mary Bill Rts. J. 37 (2015)
Felony Sentencing Procedure
- The Value of Confrontation as a Felony Sentencing Right, 25 Widener L.J. 103 (2016) (criminal sentencing symposium)
- Unbranding Confrontation as Only a Trial Right, 65 Hastings L.J. 1257 (2014)
- Making the Right Call for Confrontation at Felony Sentencing, 47 U. Mich. J.L. Reform 791 (2014)
The First Amendment
- The Corporate Privacy Proxy, 105 Cornell L. Rev. --- (forthcoming 2020)
- Invasion of Privacy, in MASS COMMUNICATION LAW IN IDAHO 165-96 (Rebecca Tallent et al eds., New Forums State Law Series 2017)
- Religious Healing Exemptions and the Jurisprudential Gap Between Substantive Due Process and Free Exercise Rights, 8 Irvine L. Rev. 633 (2018).
- By Faith Alone: When Religious Beliefs and Child Welfare Collide, in THE CONTESTED PLACE OF RELIGION IN FAMILY LAW 308 (Cambridge University Press 2018) (co-authored with Robin Fretwell Wilson)
- Ag-Gag Free Nation, 54 Wake Forest L. Rev. 491 (2019)
- Defamation and Libel, in MASS COMMUNICATION LAW IN IDAHO 51-83 (Rebecca Tallent et al eds., New Forums State Law Series 2017)
- Obscenity and Indecency, in MASS COMMUNICATION LAW IN IDAHO 83-96 (Rebecca Tallent et al eds., New Forums State Law Series 2017)
- Commercial Speech and Advertising, in MASS COMMUNICATION LAW IN IDAHO 153-63 (Rebecca Tallent et al eds., New Forums State Law Series 2017)
- Ag-Gag Free Detroit, 93 U. Det. Mercy L. Rev. 669 (2016) (centennial symposium on the past, present, and future of the City of Detroit)
- Commentary on United States v. Morrison, Feminist Judgments: Rewritten Opinions of the United States Supreme Court 447 (Cambridge University Press 2016)
- Michigan’s Duty to Provide Access to Health Care, 6 J.L. Soc’y 1 (2005)
- The Cyclical Nature of Divorce in the Western Legal Tradition, 50 Loy. L. Rev. 407 (2004)
- Twenty-Five Years of a Divided Court and Nation: Conflicting Views of Affirmative Action and Reverse Discrimination, 26 U. Ark. Little Rock L. Rev. 61 (2003)
- Note, Putting an End to the Speculative Jury: Louisiana v. Haddad, 45 Loy. L. Rev. 783 (1999)
- Idaho Law Review Faculty Advisor of the Year (2014)
- Loren Miller Bar Association Young Lawyer of the Year Award (2008)
- American Inn of Court/Honorable Society of the Inner Temple Pegasus Scholar (2004)
- Loyola University School of Law William Crowe Scholar (2001)
- Loyola Law Review Editorial Board Award for Outstanding Dedication and Service (1999-2000)
Recent Blog Posts
University of Idaho Law Faculty Present and Take on Leadership Roles at Association of American Law Schools Annual Meeting
Posted Tue, 08 Jan 2019 14:00:00 -0800
In early January 2019, College of Law faculty descended on New Orleans to attend the Association of American Law Schools Annual Meeting. Read more
Posted Tue, 11 Apr 2017 00:00:00 -0700
On April 6, 2017, the Wisconsin Supreme Court in State v. Zamzow cited scholarship by Professor Sanders entitled Unbranding Confrontation as Only a Trial Right, 65 Hastings L.J. 1257 (2014). Read more
Professor Shaakirrah R. Sanders Presents at Faculty Workshop Series at University of Toledo College of Law
Posted Tue, 11 Apr 2017 00:00:00 -0700
On Thursday, March 23, 2016, Professor Shaakirrah R. Sanders presented her recent work-in-progress, The Gay Divorcee, at University of Toledo College of Law. Read more