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Amy McManus

Lecturer on Law

Fall 2022

Amy McManus
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Amy McManus has taught at Harvard Law School for over a decade, initially teaching legal writing and appellate advocacy in the first-year program as a Climenko Fellow, and then eventually leading the Graduate Program’s offerings in legal writing and American law as a Lecturer on Law. Additionally, she was appointed to the First-Year Student Academic Support Committee under the Dean of Students as a Climenko Fellow, as well as the Dean’s Ad Hoc Public Interest Committee while a student at HLS.

In addition to her work at HLS, Ms. McManus, a Tennessee native, serves pro bono as the General Counsel to Volunteer Girls State, a non-profit organization that provides leadership and civics training to the most outstanding young women the state. In that capacity, she counsels the organization on all legal aspects of its programming, including corporate governance, fundraising compliance, intellectual property issues, board management, and volunteer liability.

Prior to her appointments at HLS, Ms. McManus was as an attorney at the Civil Rights Project at Harvard, where she advised and advocated for community-based civil rights organizations on a variety of matters, including voting rights, environmental justice, school desegregation, and “zero tolerance” discipline codes. Additionally, she supervised students’ research and clinical work and guest lectured in Professor Christopher Edley’s civil rights seminars.

Following her tenure at the Civil Rights Project, she was a litigation associate at Cahill Gordon & Reindel in New York, where she represented publishers in First Amendment cases, media distributors in anti-trust matters, and international insurance firms in general commercial litigation and arbitration. She also represented pro bono clients on a range of issues including non-profit real estate interests, landlord-tenant disputes, and bankruptcy.

Ms. McManus served as chief clerk to the Honorable Kermit V. Lipez of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit.

She earned her Juris Doctor, cum laude, from Harvard Law School, where she was elected editor-in-chief of the Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review, an Irving Kaufman Public Interest Fellow, and the National Association of Women Lawyer’s Outstanding Law Student. She also holds a Bachelor of Arts, summa cum laude, from the New College at the University of Alabama, where she was selected to Phi Beta Kappa in her junior year.


  • B.A. New College, University of Alabama, 1993
  • J.D. Harvard Law School, 1998

Bar Admissions

  • Massachusetts, United States (1999)
  • New York, United States (2001)


  • Hon. Kermit V. Lipez, United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit, 2003 - 2004