Jeff Powell awarded 2002 University Scholar/Teacher of the Year Award

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Jeff Powell, a well-published professor praised by both his students and his peers, received the 2002 University Scholar/Teacher of the Year Award on Oct. 3. The honor was presented as part of the University's Founder's Day celebration. Powell, a professor of law and professor of divinity at Duke, authored several books, including The President's Authority Over Foreign Affairs, The Constitution and the Attorneys General (which was recognized as a Choice Magazine Outstanding Academic Book of 1999), and Languages of Power: A Source Book of Early American Constitutional History.

His book, The Moral Tradition of American Constitutionalism: A Theological InterpretationHarvard Law Review article, "The Original Understanding of Original Intent," is the third most-cited law review article of that year. Duke Law students presented Powell with the "Distinguished Teaching Award" in 1999 citing his "genuinely captivating and entrancing" lectures, his dedication to teaching and his combination of "great intellectual capacity with humane qualities."

Powell earned his bachelor of arts degree (summa cum laude) from St. David's University College of the University of Wales in 1975, later receiving his master's of divinity (1979) and juris doctor (1982) degrees from Yale University, and a master's degree (1977) and doctor of philosophy degree (1991) from the Divinity School of Duke University.

Following graduation from law school, he received a highly sought-after judicial clerkship with The Honorable Sam J. Ervin, III of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. Prior to permanently joining the Law and Divinity faculties of Duke University in 1989, Powell was a member of the faculty at University of Iowa and a visiting faculty member at the University of North Carolina, Duke University and Yale University.

Powell was the Principal Deputy Solicitor General in 1996 and the Deputy Assistant Attorney General (or designate) in the Office of Legal Counsel in 1993-94 and in 1996 at the United States Department of Justice. From 1991 to 1993 he served as Special Counsel to the Attorney General of the State of North Carolina.

He has appeared before the Supreme Court of the United States, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second, Fourth, Fifth and Ninth Circuits, United States District Courts, the Supreme Court of North Carolina, the North Carolina Court of Appeals, and the Supreme Court of Texas.