Frederick M. Lawrence
2011 to 2015
An accomplished scholar, teacher and attorney, Frederick M. Lawrence is one of the nation’s leading experts on civil rights, free expression and bias crimes.
Lawrence, who has written, lectured and testified widely on civil rights crimes, is the author of “Punishing Hate: Bias Crimes Under American Law” (Harvard University Press, 1999), which examines bias-motivated violence and the laws governing how such violence is punished in the United States. He has also written and edited numerous books and articles on constitutional law.
His accomplishments during his presidency included restoring fiscal stability to the university and overseeing record-setting increases in admissions applications, undergraduate financial aid and the university’s endowment. An acclaimed teacher, Lawrence taught an undergraduate seminar on punishment and crime that was one of the most popular undergraduate courses offered at Brandeis.
Lawrence was widely regarded as a champion of the fine arts. He revitalized the university’s Rose Art Museum, recruited and hired a dynamic new museum director and commissioned the Light of Reason sculpture, which serves as an inviting gateway to the museum and a dynamic outdoor space for the Brandeis community.
In 2015, Lawrence returned to Yale Law School as a distinguished research scholar. The following year, he was appointed secretary and chief executive officer of the Phi Beta Kappa Society, where he still serves.