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Doug Kendall (1964-2015)

Founder and President

Doug Kendall, Constitutional Accountability Center's Founder and first President, passed away on September 26, 2015. To read CAC's statement on Doug's life and work, click here.

Doug was a litigator, author, activist, and non-profit entrepreneur. Before he founded CAC, Doug founded Community Rights Counsel (CRC) and directed CRC for more than a decade before CAC’s launch. In 2011, the National Law Journal recognized Doug as a “legal visionary” for CAC’s success in “reclaiming the Constitution for the legal left.” 

Doug represented clients in state and federal appellate courts around the country and co-authored more than four dozen briefs filed before the U.S. Supreme Court, representing clients including the National Governors Association, the National League of Cities, the League of Women Voters, the American Judicature Society, and many of the nation’s preeminent constitutional scholars. 

Doug was regularly called on to speak as an expert on a wide range of legal topics.  He was quoted in more than 500 national news stories, appeared on television dozens of times, and been an on-air guest on NPR more than a dozen times. His commentary ran in The New Republic, Slate, and dozens of major papers, including The Washington Post, USA Today, and The Los Angeles Times. Doug contributed regularly to Huffington Post, where his commentary on legal developments was regularly featured on the site’s homepage. Doug was the co-author of three books, and the lead author of numerous book chapters, reports, and studies. His academic writings appeared in scholarly journals, including the Virginia Law Review. Doug received his undergraduate and law degrees from the University of Virginia.


Major Publications of Doug Kendall


GOOD NEWS ABOUT TAKINGS (APA 2006) (with Timothy Dowling and Jennifer Bradley).

REDEFINING FEDERALISM: LISTENING TO THE STATES IN SHAPING “OUR FEDERALISM” (ELI 2004) (Editor and co-author with Jay Austin, Jennifer Bradley, Timothy Dowling, James Ryan, and Jason Rylander).

TAKINGS LITIGATION HANDBOOK: DEFENDING TAKINGS CHALLENGES TO LAND USE REGULATIONS (American Legal Publishing 2000) (with Timothy Dowling & Andrew Schwartz).

Book Chapters

Rethinking the Federal Government’s Role in Important Environmental Problems, in Losing Ground ( ELI 2007).

U.S. Supreme Court Says All Executive Power Is Not Vested in the President, in What Limits Should Be Placed on Presidential Powers (Thomson Gale 2007) (Article paired with Federalist Society speech by Justice Alito).

Redefining Federalism, in Strategies for Environmental Success in an Uncertain Judicial Environment ( ELI 2006).

The Use/Value Debate and Tahoe, in Taking Sides on Takings Issues, The Impact of Tahoe Sierra (ABA 2003).

Defining the Lucas Box: Palazzolo, Tahoe and the Use/Value Debate, in Taking Sides on Takings Issues: The Public and Private Perspectives, (ABA 2001).

Law Journal Articles

Redefining Federalism, 35 Envtl. L. Rep. 10445, 10459 (2005). 

Tainted Justice: How Private Judicial Trips Undermine Public Confidence in the Judiciary,18 Geo. J. Legal Ethics 65 (2004) (with Jason Rylander).

Conservative Judicial Activism and the Environment: An Assessment of the Threat, 32 Envtl. L. Rep. 10,835, 10,842 (2002).

 Nothing For Free: How Private Judicial Seminars are Undermining Environmental Protections and Breaking the Public's Trust, 25 Harv. Envtl. L.J. 405 (2001) (with Eric Sorkin).

Choice of Forum and Finality Ripeness: The Unappreciated Hot Topics in Regulatory Takings Cases, 33 Urb. Law. 405 (2001) (with Timothy Dowling and Andrew Schwartz).

Preserving South Carolina's Beaches: The Role of Local Planning in Managing Growth in Coastal South Carolina, 9 S.C. Envtl. L.J. 61 (2000).

The Takings Project: A Critical Analysis and Assessment of the Progress So Far, 25 B.C. Envtl. Aff. L.J. 509 (1998) (with Charles P. Lord).

"Paying" for the Change: Using Eminent Domain to Secure Exactions and Sidestep Nollan and Dolan, 81 Va. L. Rev. 1801 (1995) (with James E. Ryan).

The Limits to Growth and the Limits to the Takings Clause , 11 Va. Envtl. L.J. 547 (1992).

Selected Op-eds

Fill the Bench Now, Slate, February 5, 2010

The Bench in Purgatory, Slate, October 26, 2009

Elections for Sale?, The Los Angeles Times, September 9, 2009

Oil Vey! Exxon's Capitol Hill Shaming, Huffington Post, July 25, 2008

Supreme Court Hands Exxon $2 Billion . . . and Progressives an Opening, Huffington Post, July 25, 2008

Constitutional Drift: Obama veers to the right, but does he need to take the Constitution with him? Slate, July 22, 2008 (with Dahlia Lithwick)

Cruel and Unusual Originalism, Huffington Post and ACS Blog, April 23, 2008

The Constitution at Constitution Hall, Huffington Post, April 18, 2008

Constitutionally Incorrect: Barack Obama is just the latest person to get the history of the Constitution wrong by ignoring the Reconstruction amendments, New Republic Online, March 26, 2008

Big Business's Big Term: Victories for the Chamber of Commerce at the Supreme Court, Slate March 5, 2008

Constitutional Craving: At long last, Democrats are finally trying to reclaim the Constitution, New Republic Online, December 24, 2007 (with Jennifer Bradley)  

The Supreme Court Plays Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon, Slate Magazine, December 3, 2007

Take the Constitutional Fight to the Conservatives, California Majority Report, September 24, 2007

The Legislature Thereof: California Voters can't Change the 2008 Election Rules on their own, Slate, September 13, 2007

How Liberals Can Take Back The Court, The New Republic, August 6, 2007 (with James E. Ryan)

The Faux Originalism of Justice Clarence Thomas, Slate Magazine, August 1, 2007 (with James E. Ryan)

Transforming the Global Warming Debate, The McClatchy-Tribune Information Services, April 25, 2007

Debate Framers, The New Republic Online, Dec. 1, 2006 (with Jennifer Bradley).

Show Me State, The New Republic Online, June 21, 2006 (with Jennifer Bradley).

What Makes Roberts Different , Washington Post, July 24, 2005.

In the Balance, The New Republic Online, July 5, 2005 (with Jennifer Bradley).

If Republicans look at Brown’s Record, They Will Vote Brown Down, Roll Call, June 7, 2005 (with Jennifer Bradley).

Learning to Love the Bomb, Roll Call, April 5, 2005 (with Jennifer Bradley).

Ouch! You're Hurting Us: How the Court is Stifling Innovation at the State Level , Washington Post, Nov. 14, 2004.

A Big Question about Clarence Thomas , Washington Post, Oct. 14, 2004.

When Judges Behave Badly, Legal Times, August 9, 2004.

Judicial Throwback, Washington Post, Sept. 19, 2003 (with Timothy Dowling).

No Loss, No Foul, Legal Times, Jan. 20, 2003 (with Timothy Dowling).

Conservative Bench Press , Louisville Courier-Journal, July 26, 2001.

Seizures Aid City Growth, USA Today, Mar. 21, 2001 (with Timothy Dowling).

Gale Norton is No James Watt, She’s Even Worse, L.A. Times, Jan. 9, 2001.

Election 2000 and the Federal Judiciary, San Diego Union Tribune, July 22, 1999.

The Right Can't Have It Both Ways, L.A. Times, Feb. 8, 1998 (with James. E. Ryan).

Selected Speeches, Television Appearances and Congressional Testimony

Congressional Testimony before the United States Committee on the Judiciary on We the People? Corporate Spending in American Elections after Citizens United, 111th Cong., March 2010.

Global Warming, Local Governments, and the Courts, speech at International Municipal Lawyers Association Annual Meeting, September 2006.

Good News About Takings, speech at American Planning Association National Conference, April 2006.

The Environmental Community and the Roberts’ Nomination, Kennedy School Panel on the Supreme Court Nomination and Confirmation Process, March 24, 2006 (broadcast on C-Span).

High Court, High Living, Power Trip, ABC News Nightline, January 27, 2006 (on-air commentator on issues of judicial ethics).

What Do Environmentalists Want from the Supreme Court, Environmental Law Institute Panel Discussion, July 2005 (broadcast on C-Span).

Can Federalism Be Progressive, Panel at American Constitution Society Annual Convention, July 2005.

How to Protect Environmental Protections, Center for American Progress/American Constitution Society Panel, March 2005.

Redefining Federalism, speech at National Conference of State Legislators Annual Conference, December 2004.

Redefining Federalism, speech at International Municipal Lawyers Association’s Annual Meeting, October 2003.

Wetlands Takings 2002, A Good Year in Review, speech at Association of State Wetlands Managers Annual Meeting, January 2003.

Congressional Testimony, Review of Judicial Misconduct Statutes: Oversight Hearing Before the House Judiciary Subcomm. on Courts, the Internet, and Intellectual Property, 107th Cong., November 2001.

"Property Rights Protection: Judicial Activism or a Return to First Principles?" Panel Discussion at Federalist Society Annual Convention, November 2001.

Judges are Wined and Dined at Seminars Paid for by Big Corporations, ABC News 20/20, April 6, 2001 (on-air commentator on issues of judicial ethics).