Washington Law Review


When I first met Joan Fitzpatrick, it was immediately apparent that she possessed a seemingly limitless understanding of law, politics, and history. She combined this knowledge with a passion for teaching and promoting global human rights. As a scholar, Joan was brilliant; as a person, she was compassionate, dignified, and honest. Throughout the five years that I was lucky enough to have known her, her dedication to students, education, and above all action, was in my eyes heroic. In 1998, as an undergraduate research assistant at the University of Washington School of Law, Joan allowed me to take her graduate level seminar in international human rights law. Although I was initially reticent to participate in an advanced course full of law students taught by a world-renowned expert, I was reassured by Joan's practice of treating everyone with a high degree of respect and consideration. In class, Joan applied her comprehensive knowledge of the field with an informed and precise analysis. Among the students, she was able to spread a feeling of inspired confidence that made even the most dismal human rights crisis seem surmountable. Like other students who met Joan, I left her class feeling informed, and motivated to make a change in the world.

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