Faculty

Photo of Brenda Bratton Blom

Brenda Bratton Blom

Law School Professor Emeritus

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bblom @ law.umaryland.edu

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BA, 1989, JD, 1993, University of Baltimore
MPS, 1993; Ph.D. 2002, University of Maryland, Baltimore County

Curriculum Vitae


Biography | Selected Publications

Professor Blom believes that the core duty of those who choose (and are given the opportunity) to study and practice law is to be a good steward of the justice system. Creating opportunities for students and faculty to learn about the law while they are engaged in solving problems for clients is central to her work.

Professor Blom is the instructor for the Community Justice Clinic. Through her work with the National Task Force of Community Oriented and Problem Solving Lawyering, she developed a deep appreciation for the work that is happening across America and in other countries by people who are trying to transform structures to use restorative justice methods for solving problems in communities. She focuses her work on efforts to develop models of restorative justice in communities in Baltimore. Combining the efforts of community based organizations, schools, the courts, prosecutors and defenders, this clinic explores and evaluates efforts to reduce violence and reclaim communities currently in crisis.

Her previous work in the Economic, Housing and Community Development Clinic providing legal representation to community based non-profit organizations dovetails nicely into the work she is doing today. She has spent many years providing general legal counsel to community based nonprofits handling a wide range of complex issues facing organizations attempting urban revitalization from the ground up.

Professor Blom served as National Co-Chair and a member of the Advisory Board to the National Law School Consortium Project, and currently serves on the Board of the local affiliate, Civil Justice, Inc. These organizations are part of the law school’s commitment to creating opportunities for those students who are interested in both “doing well and doing good.” By supporting post law school training for people who choose to practice in a solo and small firm that includes increasing access to justice as a core part of their mission, law schools across the country are redefining public interest work. The University of Maryland School of Law was one of the founding members of the Law School Consortium Project, and the work continues to develop through the partnership with Civil Justice, Inc. on JustAdvice.

She has also been active in the American Bar Association’s Forum on Affordable Housing and Community Development and has served as the Co-Chair for the Legal Educators Committee, participated on panels, both as a panelist and moderator. She has a deep and abiding commitment to using the law to support community building activities, the development of affordable housing and urban policies that support the creation of healthy communities. She serves on the Committee on Lawyering in the Public Interest in the Association of American Law Schools.

Prior to joining the Law School, Professor Blom worked as a staff attorney for the Community Law Center, then as Executive Director of Empowerment Legal Services Program. She has given numerous presentations on the role of academia in community development and has been a tireless advocate for developing neighborhoods in Baltimore City.

Books

Community Economic Development Law: A Text for Engaged Learning (2012) (with Susan Bennett, Louise A. Howells, and Deborah S. Kenn). [Abstract]

Book Chapters

Creating a Problem Solving and Restoring Community Using Lessons Lost in the Merger of the Courts of Law and Equity: Justice as a Critical Element of Community Development, in Re-Engineering Community Development for the 21st Century (2008) (with others).

Articles

Community Voice and Justice: An Essay on Problem-Solving Courts as a Proxy for Change, 10 University of Maryland Law Journal of Race, Religion, Gender & Class 25 (2010) (with others). [Full Text]

Conversations on “Community Lawyering”: The Newest (Oldest) Wave in Clinical Education, 28 Washington University Journal of Law and Policy 359 (2008) (with others). [Full Text]

Cause Lawyering and Social Movements: Can Solo and Small Firm Practitioners Anchor Social Movements?, 39 Studies in Law, Politics and Society 119 (2006). [Full Text]

Finding Your Balance on the Tightrope: Reflections from a Clinical Life, 4 University of Maryland Law Journal of Race, Religion, Gender and Class 273 (2004). [Full Text]

A New Tool for Strengthening Urban Neighborhoods, 11 Journal of Affordable Housing and Community Development Law 128 (2002) (with Robert B. Inerfeld). [Full Text]



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Copyright © 2014, University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law. All Rights Reserved