Professor Jeffrey Bellin was honored with the McGlothlin Award for Exceptional Teaching at William & Mary Law School’s May 13 Diploma Ceremony. The annual award was established in 2016 and is given to two outstanding educators, one from the Law School and one from the Mason School of Business, who have demonstrated sustained commitments to teaching. The recognition includes a substantial prize for each recipient, made possible through the generosity of James W. McGlothlin '62, J.D. '64, LL.D. '00 and Frances Gibson McGlothlin '66, L.H.D. '18.
“We are grateful to Jim and Fran for their incredible generosity and foresight in establishing an award to celebrate exceptional teaching,” said Law School Dean Davison M. Douglas. “This year’s recipient, Jeff Bellin, is a marvelous recipient of the McGlothlin Teaching Award. He is an award-winning teacher who effectively uses his considerable experience as a former federal prosecutor to bring a real-life perspective to his teaching. Our students flock to his classes.”
Bellin was named a University Professor for Teaching Excellence for a three-year term in 2017 by a university-wide faculty selection committee, and also has held a Cabell Research Professorship for two academic terms (2015-16 and 2016-17). The university recognized him in 2015 with a Plumeri Award for Faculty Excellence, and, in 2014, he was honored by the graduating class with the Walter L. Williams, Jr., Memorial Teaching Award.
“You could make a case for just about anyone on our faculty to win this award,” Bellin said. “In my case, all the credit belongs to our smart, thoughtful, engaged students who make teaching fun, my colleagues on the faculty who inspire me to find innovative ways to communicate the intricacies of the law, and William & Mary for preserving an atmosphere that allows dedicated teachers to thrive.”
Bellin teaches and writes in the areas of evidence, criminal law and criminal procedure, and many of the nation’s leading legal journals have featured his scholarship, including the University of Pennsylvania Law Review, the Northwestern University Law Review, and the Michigan Law Review. He is the author of two books: Volume 30B in Federal Practice & Procedure, which covers federal hearsay rules, and The Virginia and Federal Rules of Evidence: A Concise Comparison with Commentary. Numerous media have featured his legal perspective in their news coverage, including the Associated Press, ABC, CNN, NPR, USA Today, and the Washington Post.
He is a member of the National Center for State Courts’ Research Advisory Council and also has assisted federal courts in investigations of alleged judicial misconduct.
Bellin received his undergraduate degree from Columbia University, summa cum laude, and his law degree from Stanford Law School, where he was elected to Order of the Coif. Before beginning his academic career, he clerked for Judge Merrick Garland on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, served as a prosecutor with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia, and practiced in the San Diego office of Latham & Watkins.
Thomas Jefferson founded William & Mary Law School in 1779 to train leaders for the new nation. Now in its third century, America’s oldest law school continues its historic mission of educating citizen lawyers who are prepared both to lead and to serve.