Harper Jean Tobin

Welcome to my online CV.
Links to publications are below.


Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH
J.D., cum laude, 2007
Concentration in International Law
M.S.S.A. (M.S.W. equivalent), 2007
Concentration in Children, Youth & Families

CALI/Book Awards: Reproductive Rights Seminar, Journal Seminar, Property

Case Western Reserve Journal of International Law – Note Editor
International War Crimes Research Lab (produced a research memorandum for the Prosecutor's Office of the Special Court for Sierra Leone)

Oberlin College, Oberlin, OH
B.A. in Sociology & English, 2003
Magna cum laude in Sociology
Minors in Women’s Studies & English

Comfort Starr Award in Sociology

Student Senate, 2002-03
Peer educator, Oberlin Sexual Information Center, 2000-03

Bar admissions
Maryland, 2007
U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, 2008

Legal Work Experience

National Senior Citizens Law Center, Washington, DC
Staff Attorney, Federal Rights Project August 2007-Present
Provide technical assistance to attorneys through publications, advising on litigation, and running a listserv with commentary and analysis of current court developments. Promote access to justice through policy research and analysis, articles and op-eds in print and online media, and federal lobbying.

Servicemembers Legal Defense Network, Washington, DC
Law Fellow August 2007
Conducted research on military regulations affecting lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender servicemembers.

Lambda Legal, Atlanta, GA
Law Fellow May-August 2006
Responsible for legal research and authored internal memoranda relating to civil rights impact litigation. Conducted intake interviews and follow-up correspondence for Legal Help Desk.

Legal Aid Society of Cleveland, Cleveland, OH
Domestic Violence Intern September 2005-April 2006
Prepared pleadings; interviewed clients and accompanied them to court; conducted legal and policy research; handled scheduling and correspondence with clients.

National Gay & Lesbian Task Force, Washington, DC
Law Fellow May-August 2005
Drafted internal research memoranda, memoranda on legislative language for state and local organizations, and educational materials for members of Congress; tracked and analyzed state and local legislation.

Journal and Law Review Publications

The Continuing Viability of Medicaid Rights after the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005, 117 YALE L. J. POCKET PART (forthcoming 2009) (with Rochelle Bobroff).

Recent Cases Involving Third Party Beneficiary Claims Against Private Parties and Local Agencies
, 42 CLEARINGHOUSE REV. 99 (July/Aug. 2008) (with Rochelle Bobroff).

Strings Attached: The Power of the Federal Purse Waivers State Sovereign Immunity for the Rehabilitation Act, 42 CLEARINGHOUSE REV. 15 (May/June 2008) (with Rochelle Bobroff).

Confronting Misinformation on Abortion: Informed Consent, Deference, and Fetal Pain Laws, 17 COLUM. J. GENDER & L. 111 (2008).

Against the Surgical Requirement for Change of Legal Sex, 30 CASE W. RES. J. INT’L L. 393 (2007).

Other Publications

The Supreme Court’s Two-Front War on the Safety Net: A Cautionary Tale for Health Care Reformers, American Constitution Society Issue Brief, January 2009 (with Simon Lazarus).

Solicitor General’s Office: Course Correction Needed, NAT’L L. J., January 26, 2009 (with Rochelle Bobroff).

Senior Rights & Wrongs
, THE NATION, November, 2008. (Part of a special collection of essays on "The Court: What's at Stake," organized with Herman Schwartz.)

Don't Close the Door on Society's Most Vulnerable, L.A. DAILY J., August 28, 2008 (with Rochelle Bobroff).

When Congress Overrules, Judges Should Listen, ROLL CALL, July 14, 2008.

Courts Grounds Delay Fixes in Congress, States, ROLL CALL, April 17, 2008.

Justice Scalia’s Two-Front War. THE AMERICAN PROSPECT (web edition), March 6, 2008 (with Simon Lazarus).

Periodic contributor to the American Constitution Society Blog, 2007-present.

Created and maintain Polymorphous Perversity legal blog since December 2006.

Selected Undergraduate Writings

Sexuality in Transsexual & Transgender Individuals, Honors thesis, Oberlin College (2003). The most comprehensive review to date of academic and popular literature on the subject.

Human Rights Violations in the Irish Criminal Justice System, originally written for POLT 202- International Human Rights, Oberlin College (2002). A cautionary tale on the use of "extraordinary powers" in response to terrorism.


Panelist, “Overcoming Sovereign Immunity Defenses,” National Legal Aid & Defender Association Annual Conference, November 19-22, 2008 (Washington, DC).

“Transgender Sexuality and Sexual Health,” Oberlin College Conference on Sexuality and Sexual Health in Our Political Climate, March 10-12, 2006 (Oberlin, Ohio).