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Pepperdine | Caruso School of Law

The Nootbaar Institute Religious Liberty Clinic

Our Work

The Religious Liberty Clinic is designed to provide students with practical, firsthand experience as well as support the provision of high-quality legal services to clients in religious liberties litigation. Working in pairs, students participate in amicus briefs, appeals, and advocacy to advance religious liberty.

Student Experience

Students in the clinic will attend a seminar-style class that will explore enduring questions relating to how civil governments treat the religious beliefs, expressions, and institutions of their citizens.. The clinic is led by visiting professor Eric Rassbach, vice president and senior counsel at the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, and the course will be co-taught by Professor Rassbach and Caruso Law Professor Michael Helfand. Students will also work under the supervision of Jones Day attorneys.

Interested 2L and 3L students can apply to the clinic by sending the following to Michael Martinez (michael.martinez3@pepperdine.edu): (1) resume and (2) short statement explaining interest in the clinic.


 

  Eric Rassbach Bio

Professor Eric Rassbach is vice president and senior counsel at the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty where he has served since 2003. He has led or been a part of Becket litigation teams in each of Becket's pathbreaking victories at the United States Supreme Court, including Hosanna-Tabor, Burwell v. Hobby Lobby, Holt v. Hobbs, Zubik v. Burwell, and Fulton v. Philadelphia. In 2020, he argued the sixth telephonic oral argument ever to the United States Supreme Court in Our Lady of Guadalupe School v. Morrissey-Berru, prevailing by a 7-2 vote.

Professor Rassbach frequently comments on church-state issues in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, and other major press outlets. His academic articles have appeared in the Tennessee Law Review, the Illinois Law Review, the Cato Supreme Court Review, and other legal journals, and often speaks to law school audiences.

Before joining Becket, Professor Rassbach worked at Baker Botts LLP in Houston, where he worked in international project finance. He also served as a law clerk to United States District Court Judge Lee Rosenthal in Houston, Texas. He graduated from Haverford College with a degree in Comparative Literature, is a member of Fitzwilliam College, University of Cambridge, and is a graduate of Harvard Law School. In addition, he was a 2012-2013 Wasserstein Public Interest Fellow at Harvard Law School. He is admitted in Texas, Washington, DC, and California.