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Newest Tulane professor a rising corporate law star

October 07, 2015

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Former litigator Ann Lipton, a prolific young scholar and Tulane Law School’s newest faculty member, says she hopes to teach students “why it’s important as a citizen to understand how businesses are organized, how they function and how they’re regulated.”

Photo by Tracie Morris Schaefer  

With four law review pieces slated for publication in 2015-16, two new law school courses and a weekly posting on a business law blog, former securities litigator Ann Lipton is one of corporate law’s fastest-rising scholars — and the newest member of the Tulane Law faculty. 

She brings to the classroom more than a decade of experience handling securities and corporate litigation in New York, including a short stint with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Her research and writing focus on how corporations can operate better.

A forthcoming Georgetown Law Journal article examines whether corporate or contract law governs company charter and bylaw clauses that require shareholder disputes to be resolved through arbitration. Lipton shared her research on that topic with fellow business law faculty at the Third Annual Workshop for Corporate & Securities Litigation hosted by Boston University School of Law Oct. 2-3. She’s set to present it again at the Southeast Junior-Senior Law Professor Workshop at the University of Alabama School of Law, which she’s attending with Shu-Yi Oei, Tulane’s Hoffman F. Fuller Associate Professor of Tax Law. 

In a paper set for publication in the Washington University Law Review, she proposes how federal civil rights law can help inform courts in determining corporate intent (and resulting liability) in securities fraud cases.

She also has written two pieces analyzing the Supreme Court’s recent application of the fraud-on-the-market doctrine: “Searching for Market Efficiency,” published in the Arizona Law Review, and “Halliburton and the Dog That Didn’t Bark,” forthcoming in the Duke Journal of Constitutional Law & Public Policy.

A graduate of Stanford University and Harvard Law School, Lipton clerked for the late Judge Edward Becker when he was chief of the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia and then for U.S. Supreme Court Justice David Souter in 2001-02. 

Lipton said that, as a law student, she initially imagined she’d become a civil rights lawyer, but she found corporations and how they exercise power “richer for analysis and more interesting” than other areas of law.

“Businesses increasingly take on public responsibilities, play a major role in our political system, structure the daily lives of most people and are increasingly deemed to have civil rights previously only granted to natural persons,” Lipton said. 

“For that reason,” she said, “it is critical to understand how they are governed and the structure of our system for regulating them.”

In a dynamic field, Lipton is an agile scholar. In blogging weekly for the Business Law Prof Blog, she joins top academics nationwide delving into contemporary legal issues. Her recent posts have covered corporate law-focused questions, such as the challenges plaintiffs face amending securities fraud lawsuits and issues in a Wal-Mart shareholder dispute over gun sales, but also general topics, including the influence of online research portal SSRN on legal scholarship and the impact of glass office doors on life in Big Law firms.

As a practitioner, Lipton primarily represented class-action plaintiffs in securities litigation against corporations including Citigroup, Sears and Merck. She taught at Duke Law School for two years before moving to New Orleans. 

At Tulane Law, she’s teaching business enterprises in fall 2015 and securities regulation in spring 2016. She also is helping lead an economic regulation course for undergraduate students through Tulane’s Murphy Institute, a multidisciplinary center that supports academic programs in political economy, ethics and public policy.

“My hope is to explain to everyone why they should care about business law,” Lipton said, “and why it’s important as a citizen to understand how businesses are organized, how they function and how they’re regulated.”


Tulane Lawyer Magazine  

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