Erika L. Wood

Professor of Law

Erika L. Wood

Erika L. Wood joined NYLS in 2011. Previously, she was a Deputy Director at the Brennan Center for Justice where she designed and launched major reform campaigns around the country and provided legal counsel and strategic guidance to advocates, legislators, and policymakers nationwide. She created the Brennan Center Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice Advisory Council as well as the Center’s Communities of Faith Initiative.

Professor Wood has litigated complex civil rights cases in the areas of   employment discrimination, voting rights and health privacy.   She is a frequent speaker and commentator on voting rights, criminal justice reform and racial justice issues. Her work has been featured in numerous media outlets across the country, including The New York Times, Newsweek, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and National Public Radio.

In 2012, Professor Wood was recognized as one of the “most accomplished and innovative campaign and elections experts in the country” by the website  In 2009, Professor Wood was awarded the Eric. R. Neisser Public Interest Award by Rutgers Law School in recognition of her efforts to carry forward the law school’s mission of providing liberty and justice for all.

Professor Wood previously taught as an adjunct professor in the Public Policy Advocacy Clinic at New York University School of Law.  She was also an attorney with the Legal Action Center where she worked on HIV/AIDS discrimination and privacy issues as well as criminal justice policy.  She served as a law clerk for the Honorable Stephen Skillman, Presiding Judge of the New Jersey Appellate Division.

Democracy Restoration Act, Chapter in Debating Reform: Conflicting Perspectives on How to Fix the American Political System (CQ Press 2013)

Florida. How Soon We Forget. (NEW YORK TIMES, Campaign Stops, April 5, 2012)

Who Gets to Vote? (NEW YORK TIMES, Campaign Stops, Nov. 7, 2011)

A Media Guide to Redistricting (2011)

Know Your Lines: Redistricting and Why It Matters (Making Policy Public 2010) (in collaboration with the Center for Urban Pedagogy and WHP Design)

A Citizen’s Guide to Redistricting (Foreword & editor) (2010)

Jim Crow in New York (2010)

44 Years after Landmark Act, Voting Rights Still Needed (The Grio, August 2009)

De Facto Disenfranchisement (Brennan Center & ACLU 2008)


Restoring the Right to Vote (2d edition 2009)

The Modern Day Poll Tax (CLEARINGHOUSE REVIEW May/June 2007)

Surviving Title VII: Defending Municipal Residency Requirements in Minority Communities, 1 RUTGERS RACE & THE LAW REVIEW 427 (1999)