Acting Assistant Professor of Law
Co-Director, Post-Conviction Innocence Clinic
Gaynor Cunningham joined New York Law School’s faculty as an Acting Assistant Professor of Law in 2022. She co-directs the Post-Conviction Innocence Clinic (PCIC) along with Distinguished Adjunct Professor Adele Bernhard. She initially joined NYLS in 2020 as an Associate Attorney pursuant to a Department of Justice partnership grant between the clinic and the Suffolk County District Attorney’s Conviction Integrity Bureau. Under this federal grant, Professor Cunningham and the clinic identified and investigated wrongful conviction claims stemming from Suffolk County. In addition to the grant work, Professor Cunningham and the clinic represent a number of clients on post-conviction claims of innocence.
Prior to joining NYLS, Professor Cunningham was a public defender at the Legal Aid Society, Criminal Defense Practice in the Bronx. During her 10 years as a public defender, she passionately represented clients charged with all classes of felonies and misdemeanors. At the Legal Aid Society, she litigated Fourth, Fifth, and Sixth Amendment issues; won dismissals in numerous cases through complex, substantive written motion practice; secured grand jury dismissals; conducted investigations; negotiated pleas; wrote mitigation reports; and tried numerous felony and misdemeanor jury trials. Professor Cunningham brings her significant litigation skills to the Post-Conviction Innocence Clinic and to Advocacy of Criminal Cases (ACC), which she co-teaches during the spring semester.