Levin College of Law

Center for the Study of Race & Race Relations

The Center for the Study of Race and Race Relations (CSRRR) is an academic research and resource center. The Center’s mission is met through the work of various groups engaged in a wide range of activities.

About the Center for the Study of Race and Race Relations

In 1996, UF Law Professor Sharon Rush had a big idea. It was time, she thought, for UF’s law school to establish a center on race. She shared her ideas with her colleague, Professor Kenneth Nunn. He agreed. Together they began to envision and plan, drawing in colleagues who were also interested in the intersections of race and law. The idea for a Race Center was quickly supported and developed with the help of a small and dedicated group. In addition to Professors Nunn and Rush, the group included Professors Michelle Jacobs, Pedro Malavet, Juan Perea (now at Loyola‐Chicago), Charles Pouncey (FIU), Phyliss Craig‐Taylor (Dean, NCCU). Rahim Reed, Assistant Dean for Minority Affairs, was also a member of this group. His efforts were critical to the establishment of the UF Race Center. Their goal was to etch out a strategy for making race central to legal studies at UF. Energetic and dedicated, this working group lobbied the law school’s administration to create a race center. These efforts led to a formal proposal and a two-year long wait. In spring 1998, the Center for the Study of Race and Race Relations (CSRRR) was officially established as a university-wide center.

Now, almost 20 years later, the UF Race Center continues to thrive. With its mission of fostering communities of dialogue through empirical and intellectual discourse, it engages in a wide array of activities. The CSRRR hosts symposia and workshops, engages in research, produces scholarship, offers course development grants, and administers fellowships. In keeping with its original vision, the UF Race Center works across the university community with students, faculty, and other campus centers to broaden interdisciplinary efforts and connections to race.

The UF Race Center’s efforts are buoyed by a solid foundation of affiliate professors. In fact, UF Law has one of the largest contingents of affiliate professors at any law school in the country. Of the approximately 170 law schools in the U.S., less than 10 have race centers. The CSRRR was the first one established and is the only one with a focus on race and race relations and race-related curriculum development.

CSRRR work includes:

  • Producing, supporting, and highlighting race-related scholarship within and beyond the UFcommunity
  • Gathering, analyzing, and sharing historical and contemporary knowledge about race and race relations
  • Developing and supporting, through teaching, research, writing, and workshops, race-related curricula for collegiate and professional schools
  • Fostering non-stigmatizing ways of discussing issues of race and ethnicity

Please join us in our efforts to identify and address the many difficult but important race-related issues. We look forward to working with you. We welcome your questions and comments at csrrr@law.ufl.edu.


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Dr. Katheryn Russell-Brown


Dr. Russell-Brown was named the CSRRR director in 2003. She is also the Chesterfield Smith Professor of Law. Her research and writing focus on race and crime. The second edition of her book, The Color of Crime (NYU Press) was published in 2009.

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Diedre F. Houchen

Post-Doctoral Associate

Diedre F. Houchen became the CSRRR Postdoctoral Associate in 2016. She has taught race and education, history of education, and teacher education courses in University of Florida’s College of Education. Her research and writing focuses on race, education and history. Her work as a youth advocate, program developer, middle and high school teacher and teacher educator deepened her understanding of the challenges facing public education.She is published in the areas of urban education, teaching, and learning. Her current work considers Black teacher activism and pedagogy during Jim Crow.


CSRRR supports students through various initiatives and opportunities. The CSRRR Law Student Diversity Council is a forum for race and ethnicity-based law student associations to engage in collaborations and propel the work of their various associations forward. We provide course development grants for graduate students to fund the development and teaching of a course substantially addressing issues of race and/or race relations. Students also engage in volunteer and paid internships and projects with the Race Center. Fill out our volunteer form to get involved.

Advisory Council

Affiliate Professors

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Katheryn Russell-Brown

Professor Katheryn Russell-Brown is the Chesterfield Smith Professor of Law and Director of the Center for the Study of Race and Race Relations at the University of Florida, Levin College of Law.  Professor Russell-Brown teaches, researches, and writes at the intersections of race, crime, and the sociology of law.  She has published numerous books, articles, and essays, including The Color of Crime.  In 2009, she was awarded a Soros Justice Advocacy Fellowship.  Her project focused on ways to integrate criminal justice issues into the elementary education curriculum.  Her article, “The Constitutionality of Jury Override in Alabama Death Penalty Cases,” was cited in the U.S. Supreme Court case, Harris v. Alabama (1995).

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Nancy Dowd

Professor Nancy Dowd’s scholarship focuses on children and families, race and gender equality, critical race and feminist theory, juvenile justice, fatherhood, and non-marital families.  Her list of recent books and publications is on the UF website.  Her current project is an indepth examination of the life course of African American boys from birth to age 18, as a means to explore race and gender inequalities among children.  In that work she has developed the concept of developmental equality, a means to achieve equality for those children at the bottom of the hierarchies among children with respect to support and development to insure equal opportunity as adults.

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Berta E. Hernandez-Truyol

Professor Berta E. Hernández-Truyol is the Levin Mabie & Levin Professor of Law and Associate Director of the Center on Children and Families. She is an internationally renowned human rights scholar who teaches international law, human rights, trade and globalization. Her scholarship focuses on the intersections of sex, race, gender, sexuality, culture, and other traits that render some populations marginable. In a recent book project, she utilized a critical human rights paradigm to unveil injustice and to seek to provide methodological tools to remedy inequality and eradicate prejudice in the global community – both in the U.S. and internationally.

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Diedre F. Houchen

Diedre F. Houchen became the CSRRR Postdoctoral Associate in 2016. Her research and writing focus on race, education, and history. Her current work considers Black educational pedagogy during de jure segregation. She is published in the areas of urban education, teaching, and learning.

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Darren Hutchinson

Professor Darren Hutchinson is the Stephen C. O’Connell Chair and Professor of Law. He teaches and writes about constitutional law, civil rights litigation, law and social movements, LGBT rights, and critical race theory. He has written extensively on the Supreme Court’s equal protection doctrine. His research addresses legal questions from an interdisciplinary perspective, utilizing social science materials to analyze the law with greater complexity. He is working on an article, Undignified: The Supreme Court, Racial Justice, and Dignity Claims, which will be the focus of a symposium in the spring that will be published by the Florida Law Review.

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Michelle Jacobs

Professor Michelle Jacobs is Assistant Director for the Criminal Justice Center and Professor of Law. Jacobs teaches criminal law, criminal procedure, international criminal law, critical race theory and a seminar, Criminal Law in the Virtual Context, which examines how technological development creates intersections between traditional civil law and criminal law. Her scholarship interests include criminal law, critical race theory and women defendants in the criminal justice system.

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Shani King

Professor Shani King is an active scholar who writes and teaches in the areas of international human rights, children’s rights and family law; the role of children’s counsel in various contexts; family autonomy in traditionally underserved populations; immigration law and legal ethics.  Professor King’s scholarship focuses on urgent contemporary issues involving juvenile justice, dependency, immigration and international and domestic children’s rights, especially as they impact the lives of African-American and Latino children.

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Pedro A. Malavet

Professor Pedro A. Malavet has published multiple law review articles and one book in Critical Race Theory scholarship focusing on the racialization of Latinas/os generally in the United States and specifically on how that affects the citizenship rights of the largest group of U.S. territorial citizens: Puerto Ricans. These writings illuminate how Latinas/os are homogenized into a single non-white, non-citizen “race” in both the popular imagination and in American legal and political discourse. These tropes and the accompanying discrimination make it difficult for Latinas and Latinos to fully exercise our citizenship and even fundamental human rights in the U.S.

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Jason Nance

Professor Jason P. Nance is Associate Director of the Center on Children and Families and Associate Professor of Law. He teaches education law, torts and remedies. In his scholarship he examines the interface of law, policy, education, and race, drawing on his public school teacher experience, legal background and doctoral training in education policy and empirical research methodology. He’s focused on racial inequalities in the public education system, particularly school discipline, school-to-prison pipeline, addressing the ill effects of educators’ implicit racial biases, and the disparate use of strict security measures on students of color.

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Kenneth B. Nunn

Professor Kenneth B. Nunn is Co-founder of CSRRR, Assistant Director of the Criminal Justice Center, Associate Director of the Center on Children and Families and Professor of Law. He teaches criminal law and procedure. His research interests include African and African-centered thought, cultural studies, legal semiotics, and Critical Race Theory. In his research he employs a number of critical theories to explore the intersection of race and criminal justice. He was a consulting editor for the MacMillan Encyclopedia of Race and Racism and a contributor to the World Book Encyclopedia on race, racism and related topics.

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Sharon E. Rush

Professor Sharon E. Rush is Co-founder of CSRRR, the Associate Dean for Faculty Development and the Irving Cypen Professor of Law. She teaches courses on constitutional law and federal courts. Her research focuses on the role law should play in helping society develop equal race relations. Her scholarship explores this in the context of public schools because they are becoming more and more segregated and unequal. Her current project focuses on intergroup contact theory and suggests it offers ways to reduce prejudice and promote equal race relations in schools.

Get Involved

Fill out the below form to subscribe to CSRRR emails and let us know what topics you are interested in discussing.


Children with Incarcerated Parents

Drawing for cover of Children with Incarcerated Parents Program

Trayvon Martin Projects

trayvon martin event
Two Trayvon Martin events were held in February 2014. One was on Wednesday, February 5 and the other on Thursday, February 13 from 6:00 p.m. til 8:00 p.m. at UF Law, Room 180.
For more information click here.

CSRRR Digital Collections and Projects

Want to participate in a CSRRR discussion virtually? Please see the CSRRR’s digital home.  Here we archive our materials, discussions and activities.

Youth Development Research-Practice Partnership

The Youth Development Research-Practice Partnership (YDRPP), led by CSRRR Postdoctoral Associate Diedre Houchen is an interdisciplinary team of researchers working on crucial areas related to child and adolescent identity, development, health and wellness, and education. The purpose of the YDRPP is to build synergy between research and practice with youth development programs. View the YDRPP research statement here.

Internships, Fellowships, and Grants

Student Funding Opportunities

Yegelwel Fellowship

Summer 2020 Fellowship Award—$4,000 stipend

The University of Florida’s Center for the Study of Race and Race Relations (CSRRR) is pleased to announce the 2020 Evan Yegelwel Summer Fellowship. The Fellowship award permits one UF Law student to participate in a Summer Fellowship Program at the Anti-Defamation League, Florida Regional Office in Boca Raton.

A generous gift from UF Law alumnus Evan Yegelwel, who graduated in 1980, has made this Fellowship possible. Mr. Yegelwel is a partner in the Jacksonville, Florida law firm of Terrell Hogan Ellis Yegelwel, P.A.

Find out more about the Yegelwel Fellowship.

Course Development Grants

The Course Development Grant is intended to fund the development and teaching of a course substantially addressing issues of race and/or race relations.

Graduate Internships

Bibliographic and Digital Internship-Black Education

The Bibliography and Digital Internship on Black Education in Florida will provide a UF graduate student in Education, History, Law, Museum Studies, or a related discipline with the opportunity to gain valuable experience in archival research and bibliographic curation for public education programming. This internship will provide practical experiences in project management, document handling, review, and assessment, as well as broader familiarity with concepts and best practices in archival research, African American history and educational history, especially as they relate to develop exhibitions for the public and university community.

Find out more about the internship.

View the Graduate Internship Application.

Faculty Funding Opportunities

Course Development Grants

The Course Development Grant is intended to fund the development and teaching of a course substantially addressing issues of race and/or race relations.

CSRRR News and Events

CSRRR Annual Spring Lecture “Getting Explicit about Implicit Bias in the Courts”

Judge Mark W. Bennett Thursday, March 14, 2019, 12:00 pm, Chesterfield Smith Ceremonial Classroom, UF Levin College of Law Reception to follow Watch the lecture here

Law Students Writing about Social Justice: A Panel – Part 2

Wednesday, February 27, 2019, 12:00 -1 PM. Holland Hall, Room 355C

Law Students Writing about Social Justice: A Panel

Wednesday, February 13, 2019, 12:00 -1 PM. Holland Hall, Room 355C

Keep reading

Contact Us

Contact Information


Center for the Study of Race and Race Relations
University of Florida, Levin College of Law
P.O. Box 117625
Gainesville, FL 32611-7625




(352) 273-0614


(352) 392-5000