Eli Wald

Professor; Delaney Chair

Professional Biography

Eli Wald is the Charles W. Delaney Jr. Professor of Law at the University of Denver Sturm College of Law. A legal ethics and legal profession scholar, Wald has written on topics such as increased lawyer mobility, conflict of interests and attorney disqualification, attorney-client communications, lawyers' fiduciary duties to clients, the nationalization and globalization of law practice, and, most recently, the challenges facing lawyers representing clients in the emerging marijuana industry. Professor Wald's work has appeared in leading journals such as the Fordham, Stanford, University of Colorado and Wisconsin law reviews, and the Georgetown Journal of Legal Ethics. His articles have been cited in ABA ethics opinions and excerpted in legal ethics casebooks.

Professor Wald's ongoing research into the causes and manifestations of explicit prejudice and implicit bias at large law firms, as well as means of overcoming discrimination, has gained national attention. His scholarship examines the structure and organization of law firms as well as the professional and personal identities of their lawyers to better understand the hiring and promotion patterns of law firms, and the lingering under-representation of minorities in positions of power and influence. Wald's articles have explored the rise and fall of WASP and Jewish law firms (2008), the role of kinship and nepotism in law firms' promotion decisions (2009), the discriminatory consequences of professional ideology (2010), and implicit mechanisms of discrimination in BigLaw (2011) and In-House legal departments (2012).

Wald is a member of the Colorado Supreme Court Standing Committee on the Colorado Rules of Professional Conduct, a member of the Colorado State Bar Association's Ethics Committee and a member of the Colorado Chief Justice's Commission on the Legal Profession. He serves as a member of the executive committee of the Association of American Law Schools' Professional Responsibility Section, and is an expert witness in legal ethics and malpractice matters, a legal ethics expert commentary author for LexisNexis, and a frequent legal ethics CLE instructor. At the law school, his accomplishments include winning the best faculty advisor award, and being named a Chu Family Faculty Fellow and the Hughes-Ruud Research Professor.

Prior to joining the Sturm College of Law, Professor Wald was a litigation associate at Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison in New York City. He holds S.J.D. and LL.M. degrees from Harvard Law School, where he was a John Olin Fellow in Law and Economics, a Fellow at the Center for Ethics and the Professions, and a Clark Byse Fellow. Wald also earned LL.B. and B.A. degrees from Tel-Aviv University, where he was a law review editor and a Visiting Fellow at the Max Plunk Institutes in Hamburg and Heidelberg, Germany.

The Charles W. Delaney Jr. Professor of Law

The Charles W. Delaney Jr. Professor of Law Chair was established in 1971 with a gift from Mrs. Elda Delaney, honoring her son, Charles Delaney, JD, 35, who was killed during World War II. Thompson G. Marsh held the Delaney Jr. Chair from 1971 until his retirement in 1987 and was succeeded by William M. Beaney. David (Jake) W. Barnes, currently the Distinguished Research Professor of Law at the Seton Hall Law School, held the Chair between 1993 and 2001 and was followed by Julie A. Nice, who was the Delaney Jr. Professor between 2002 and 2009 before joining the University of San Francisco Law School as the Herbst Foundation Professor of Law.


  • SJD, Harvard Law School, 2001
  • LLM, Harvard Law School, 1998
  • BA, Economics, Tel-Aviv University, 1997
  • LLB, Tel-Aviv University School of Law, 1997

Featured Publications

  • A Thought Experiment about the Academic Billable Hour or Law Professors Work Habitsh
  • The Contextual Problem of Law Schools
  • Success, Merit and Capital in America
  • Legal Ethics Next Frontier: Lawyers and Cybersecurity