Loretta Lynch and Annette Gordon-Reed: A conversation

As part of Harvard Law School’s bicentennial summit, former Attorney General of the United States Loretta Lynch ’84 and Charles Warren Professor of American Legal History at Harvard Law School Annette Gordon-Reed ’84 looked back on their time together at Harvard Law School and discussed their subsequent careers.

Prior to being appointment her post as the country’s chief law enforcement officer and head of the Department of Justice (DOJ), Lynch, the first African-American woman attorney general, served as head of the U.S. Attorney’s office in Brooklyn, N.Y.

A professor and historian, Gordon-Reed holds a joint appointment at Harvard as a professor of history in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences. She is the author or co-author of six works of history, including a biography of America’s 17th president, Andrew Johnson, and, most recently, “The Most Blessed of Patriarchs: Thomas Jefferson and the Empire of the Imagination,” with Peter S. Onuf. In addition to the 2009 Pulitzer Prize for History, Gordon-Reed’s accolades include a National Book Award, the National Humanities Medal, a MacArthur “genius” grant, and a Guggenheim Fellowship.

After law school, both Lynch and Gordon-Reed Lynch worked for the same law firm, Cahill Gordon & Reindel, in New York.