David J. Gottlieb

Professor Emeritus of Law
Primary office:


David Gottlieb, a graduate of the Georgetown University Law Center, joined the KU Law faculty in 1979. He served as director of the Paul E. Wilson Defender Project, 1979-1999, and as director of clinical programs, 1995-1999. He taught International Human Rights, Professional Responsibility, Criminal Procedure, and Refugee and Asylum Law. Gottlieb has written extensively on guideline sentencing and the death penalty. He is also nationally recognized for his leadership in clinical legal education and has served as a consultant on clinical legal education in the United States and abroad, most recently in the Ukraine, Bulgaria and Turkey. He was named a 2009 Legal Leader by the Kansas City Daily Record for his role as a legal scholar. The award honors faculty or staff at area law schools who demonstrate leadership through their work with the justice system, research or scholarship, or teaching and inspiring others. Gottlieb retired in 2014.

Courses Taught:

  • Special Topics: Refugee and Asylum Law 


J.D., Georgetown, 1974, Georgetown Law Journal; B.A., Oberlin College, 1969


Clinical legal education, international human rights, criminal procedure


Kansas 1979, New York 1975

Career History

Associate Appellate Attorney, Legal Aid Society, Criminal Appeal Bureau, New York City 1974-76; Associate Appellate Attorney, Legal Aid Society, Federal Defender Appeals Unit, New York City 1976-79; Associate Professor, Kansas 1979-84; Professor since 1984; Visiting Professor, American University 1989-90; Visiting Professor, California Western School of Law 1996-97 Visiting Professor, Howard University 2000-01; Director, Paul E. Wilson Defender Project 1979-99; Director of Clinical Programs, Kansas 1995-99.


Member, Sentencing Commission Practitioner Advisory Group; Courtesy Faculty, Department of Russian and East European Studies; Legal Specialist and Consultant, ABA Central and East European Law Initiative.

Selected Publications

  • "Criminal Trials as Culture Wars: Southern Honor and the Acquittal of Frank James," 51 Kansas Law Review 409 (2003)
  • Practice Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines (with Bamberger, et al.) (4th ed. 2001 & supps.)
  • Contemporary Federal Criminal Practice (with George) (2nd ed. 1992 & supp.)
  • "The Sentencing Commission's Administrative Reforms: Two Cheers and Some Suggestions," 9 Federal Sentencing Review 71 (1996)
  • "Drug Testing, Collective Suspicion and a Fourth Amendment out of Balance," 6 Kansas Journal of Law & Public Policy 27 (Winter 1997)
  • "The Death Penalty in the Legislature: Some Thoughts About Money, Myth, and Morality," 37 Kansas Law Review 443 (1989)