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Colorado College Strategic Plan: Building on the Block

Song Richardson headshotL. Song Richardson, a legal scholar, dedicated educator, lawyer, and expert on implicit racial and gender bias, became the 14th president of Colorado College on July 1, 2021. She succeeds Acting Co-Presidents Mike Edmonds and Robert G. Moore, who assumed the presidential role after former President Jill Tiefenthaler left the college in July 2020 to become the chief executive officer of National Geographic. 

Prior to joining Colorado College, Richardson was the dean and chancellor's professor of law at the University of California, Irvine School of Law. At the time of her appointment as UCI Law's second dean, she was the only woman of color to lead a top-30 law school. She held joint appointments in UCI Law's Department of Criminology, Law, and Society, and in the Department of Asian American Studies. She received her AB from Harvard College and her JD from Yale Law School.

Richardson's interdisciplinary research uses lessons from cognitive and social psychology to study decision-making and judgment in a variety of contexts. Her scholarship has been published by law journals at Harvard, Yale, Berkeley, Cornell, Duke, and Northwestern, among others. She is working on a book that reflects on the current reckoning with anti-Blackness that is occurring across the U.S. and its implications for law and policy.

Her legal career includes partnership at a criminal defense law firm and work as a state and federal public defender. She was also an assistant counsel at the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. She was a Skadden Arps Public Interest Fellow with the National Immigration Law Center in Los Angeles and the Legal Aid Society's Immigration Unit in Brooklyn, NY.

Richardson frequently speaks on the science of implicit bias and its influence on decisions, perceptions, and judgments. She has consulted with public and private entities developing practices to address racial and gender disparities. She is a leading expert on race and policing, and has worked with police departments addressing the impact of race on their policing practices.

Her awards and recognitions include the American Association of Law School's Derrick Bell Award, which recognizes a faculty member's extraordinary contributions to legal education through mentoring, teaching, and scholarship; the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association Trailblazer Award; being named one of the Top Women Lawyers in California; and being chosen as one of the two most influential Korean Americans in Orange County.

Richardson is a member of the American Law Institute. She is on the Executive Committee of the Association of American Law Schools, and serves on the Board of Equal Justice Works. In 2020, she was appointed by California Gov. Gavin Newsom to the California Penal Code Revision Committee.

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