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John Q. Barrett

Professor of Law

John Q. Barrett is a Professor of Law at St. John's University in New York City, where he teaches Constitutional Law, Criminal Procedure, and Legal History.  He also is the Elizabeth S. Lenna Fellow and a Board member at the Robert H. Jackson Center in Jamestown, New York.  He is a graduate of Georgetown University and Harvard Law School.

Work on Justice Jackson:  Professor Barrett is writing a biography of the late U.S. Supreme Court Justice and Nuremberg prosecutor Robert H. Jackson (1892-1954).  This work will include the first inside account of Justice Jackson's service, by appointment of President Truman, as the chief prosecutor at Nuremberg, Germany, of the principal surviving Nazi leaders following World War II.

The Jackson List: Professor Barrett regularly sends email to thousands of subscribers around the world who are interested in Justice Jackson and related topics. To read archived copies of past Jackson List posts, click here. To join the Jackson List, a one-way list that does not display recipient identities or email addresses, send a "subscribe" note to [email protected].

Justice Jackson's book That Man: Fifty years after Robert Jackson's death, Professor Barrett discovered and edited Jackson's previously unknown manuscript, now an acclaimed book, That Man:  An Insider's Portrait of Franklin D. Roosevelt (Oxford University Press). That Man, an eloquent memoir of FDR from Jackson first meeting him in 1911 through their close working relationship and friendship during the New Deal years, and World War II, is both FDR biography and Jackson autobiography.

Some recent activities:  On December 5, Professor Barrett gave a Grand Rounds lecture, “Robert H. Jackson on Immigration, Citizens, Power & Liberty,” at the City University of New York's School of Public Health.  On October 30, he lectured, on the U.S. Supreme Court, at the Queens County Bar Association.  On October 19, he lectured, on Justice Jackson and the Nuremberg trials, at the Third Circuit Judicial Conference.  On October 9, he gave his annual Supreme Court Review/Preview lecture at the Federal Bar Association meeting in Central Islip, NY.  On September 20, he delivered a Jackson-Nash Address in the Great Hall at the U.S. Department of Justice.  On July 25, he introduced Justice Rosalie Silberman Abella of Canada's Supreme Court, who then delivered Chautauqua Institution's 14th annual Jackson Lecture on the Supreme Court of the U.S. (video). Earlier in July, he was a lecturer, in Nuremberg, in Creighton University's "Nuremberg to The Hague" summer law program, and in Nuremberg he also spoke about U.S. Department of Justice Special Counsel Mueller's investigation, at the German-American Institute and at the Nuremberg Chamber of Commerce & Industry.  On June 1, Professor Barrett delivered a lecture, "Courthouse Memories: Treasury Counsel Robert H. Jackson & the Trial of Andrew W. Mellon," at the Bicentennial of the United States District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania, in Pittsburgh. On May 2, he spoke about two U.S. Supreme Court decisions, U.S. v. DiRe and Warth v. Seldin, in a program, "From the WDNY to the Supreme Court," in Rochester, New York. On April 30, he delivered the Steve Eisman Memorial Lecture, "Nuremberg, Nazis, and the Rule of Law," at the Nassau County Bar Association.  On April 13, he delivered a lecture, "Justice Jackson & the Holocaust," at a conference in Krakow, Poland, co-hosted by the International March of the Living and Rutgers University. On March 3, Professor Barrett lectured on "Justice Jackson, Trial Lawyer at Nuremberg," to the American College of Trial Lawyers. On November 21, he lectured, at the New Jersey Judicial College, on "The Prosecution of Adolf Eichmann."  (For more, see the c.v. link to the right and the video links below.)

Before joining the St. John's faculty, John Q. Barrett was Counselor to Inspector General Michael R. Bromwich, U.S. Department of Justice, from 1994-95.  From 1988-93, Barrett was Associate Counsel in the Office of Independent Counsel Lawrence E. Walsh (Iran/Contra).  From 1986-88, Barrett was a law clerk to Judge A. Leon Higginbotham, Jr., of the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit.

In addition to teaching Constitutional Law and Criminal Procedure, Professor Barrett has taught seminars on American Judicial Biography, the Hughes and Stone Courts (1930-46), and the Nuremberg Trial; Introduction to Law & the Legal Profession; Professional Responsibility; and White Collar Crime.  He also has taught Constitutional Law modules in St. John's Summer Prep Program for College Students and Nuremberg-related courses in summer programs at the University of Potsdam Law School in Germany, at ISDE/University of Barcelona in Spain, and in Nuremberg itself.

Professor Barrett speaks regularly about the U.S. Supreme Court, Justice Jackson, Nuremberg, FDR, and other legal and historical topics in public venues and to community, campus, religious, corporate, legal profession, and other audiences and groups throughout the United States and abroad. Professor Barrett also is a regular national media commentator on legal and historical issues.

Professor Barrett serves on the board of the Historical Society of the New York Courts.  He previously chaired the New York City Bar Association's Legal History Committee and served on the International Expert Advisory Council of the International Nuremberg Principles Academy.  At St. John's, he chairs the Student-Faculty Liaison Committee, serves on the Appointments Committee, the Strategic Planning & Budget Advisory Committe, and the University Committee on Investigation & Advice of Charges, is Faculty Coordinator of the St. Thomas More Scholarship Program, and is adviser to student chapters of the American Constitution Society (ACS) and the Historical Society of the New York Courts.

Last updated January 4, 2019.