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In Memoriam: Professor Brooke Overby

August 12, 2009

Brook OverbyThe faculty, students, and staff of the Law School mourn the loss of Professor Brooke Overby who passed away suddenly on August 5 in Florida.  Professor Overby was a stellar teacher, a prolific scholar and an active servant to the larger Tulane community.  We extend our deepest sympathy to her family.  A memorial service will take place at the Law School on Thursday, September 10 at 4 p.m. in Room 110.

Professor Overby grew up in Lake Forest, Illinois and attended Northwestern University, where she received a B.A. in Classics in 1982.  She received her J.D. with highest distinction from the University of Iowa College of Law in 1987, where she was an outstanding student, ranking first in her class every semester.  She received the John F. Murray Prize, served as Senior Articles Editor of the Iowa Law Review, and graduated Order of the Coif. 

Following law school, Professor Overby served as a clerk for Judge Richard J. Cardamone of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit and as an associate at Mayer, Brown & Platt in Chicago from 1988-1990.  She was a member of the Illinois Bar.

Professor Overby was an invaluable member of the faculty from the time she joined the Law School in July 1990.  She taught classes in contracts and commercial law with a genuine enthusiasm for the subject.  Professor Overby was a gifted teacher who received outstanding teaching evaluations.  She gave extraordinary time and energy to her students, and in return, she was beloved by many and deeply respected and admired by all.

Brooke OverbyProfessor Overby achieved tenure in 1996 and was promoted to full professor in 2002.  She was a visiting professor at Notre Dame Law School in spring 2002.  In her later career, she developed an interest in China, learning Mandarin and traveling as a Fulbright lecturer to the China University of Political Science and Law in Beijing.  She was an enthusiastic, intrepid world traveler, and, in addition to China, visited Africa, Thailand, Vietnam, Mongolia and Central Asia.

Brooke Overby was an active and energetic member of many Law School and University committees and authored a comprehensive report on the Law School's clinics in 1999.  She recently chaired the Law School's successful search to fill the John B. Breaux Chair.

Professor Overby wished more than anything to see her students succeed, but a close second to that was to see the intellectual and scholarly community of the Tulane Law faculty prosper. As chair of the School's Intellectual Life Committee, she worked hard to encourage and enrich a culture of scholarship. She mentored many of her colleagues, and her contribution to the intellectual life of the school will never be forgotten. 

Accordingly, at the suggestion of her colleagues and students, the Law School is establishing in Professor Overby's memory The Brooke Overby Faculty Research Fund, to be used to support faculty research and scholarship.  The Law School invites contributions from Professor Overby's colleagues, students and friends.  Donations in Brooke Overby's memory may be sent to Andrew Romero, Senior Director of Development, Tulane University Law School, 6329 Freret Street, Suite 210B, New Orleans, LA 70118, or may be made on-line at www.law.tulane.edu/giving.  Please indicate that your gift is intended for the "Brooke Overby Memorial Fund at Tulane Law School."  For questions or additional information about supporting the Overby Fund, contact Andrew Romero at 504.862.8559 or aromero@tulane.edu.

Professor Overby was a well-published scholar, and a list of her articles and presentations follows:


Allocation of Check Kiting Losses Under the UCC, Regulation CC, and the Bankruptcy Code: Reconciling the Standards, ___WAKE FOREST L. REV. (forthcoming 2009)

Mortgage Foreclosure in Post-Katrina New Orleans, 48 B. C. L. REV. 851 (2007)

Consumer Protection in China After Accession to the WTO, 33 SYR. J. INT’L L. & COM. 47-92 (2006)

Check Fraud in the Courts After the Revisions to UCC Articles 3 and 4, 57 ALA. L. REV. 351 (2005)

Our New Commercial Law Federalism, 76 TEMPLE L. REV. 2007 (2003)

Contract, in the Age of Sustainable Consumption, 27 J. CORP. L. 603 (2002) 

An Institutional Analysis of Consumer Law, 34 VAND. J. TRANS. L. 1219 (2001)

Will Cyber Law be Uniform? An Introduction to the UNCITRAL Model Law on Electronic Commerce, 7 TUL. J. INT'L & COMP. L. 219 (1999)

Modeling UCC Drafting, 29 LOY. L.A. L. REV. 645 (1996)

The Community Reinvestment Act Reconsidered, 143 U. PA. L. REV. 1431 (1995)

Bondage, Domination, and the Art of the Deal: An Assessment of Judicial Strategies in Lender Liability Good Faith Litigation, 61 FORDHAM L. REV. 963 (1993)

Arbitrability of Disputes under the Federal Arbitration Act, 71 IOWA L.REV. 1137 (1986)


Conference, “Teaching Consumer Law,” University of Houston Law Center, April 2002 (panelist on “What is Consumer Law?” and organizer/moderator of panel on Consumer Law Scholarship)

“Public Choice Theory” and “New Institutional Economics,” Tulane Law School, February 2001 (segments for mini-course on Law & Economics)

“Consumer Protection:  The United States and European Union Compared,” Tulane Law School, March 1996 (conference for Austrian notaries)

Symposium, “Shaping American Communities:  Segregation, Housing, and the Urban Poor,” University of Pennsylvania, February 1995 (presenter of main paper on panel addressing Community Reinvestment Act)

Eason-Weinmann Conference, “The Harmonization in Transnational Norms and Processes,” Tulane Law School, January 1994 (discussant on application of good faith and fair dealing in international transactions)



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