Anthony E. Varona

M. Minnette Massey Professor of Law and Dean Emeritus

LL.M., Georgetown University Law Center
J.D., Boston College Law School
A.B., Boston College

Dean Varona
Phone: (305) 284-4299
Office: G372

Between 2019 and 2021, Professor Varona served as Dean of the law school. He led the Miami Law community in recruiting the strongest entering classes in at least 30 years and achieving the best student selectivity rate in Miami Law history, elevating the law school’s national profile and reputation ratings – including a new Top 25 rank for Clinical Education and Top 30 rank for International Law (among increased ranks for 9 specialty areas), and greatly improving resources and focus towards bar success, resulting in a 10% summer bar exam pass rate increase. Professor Varona created a new Intellectual Life Program to incentivize and showcase the achievements of Miami Law faculty and attract top scholars and opinion leaders to the law school. He recruited and retained top nationally prominent faculty and senior staff colleagues, and arranged the conferral of three endowed chairs/professorships.

Professor Varona led a successful fundraising effort yielding millions of dollars of new commitments, and steered the law school through the first 17 months of the COVID pandemic, navigating the emergency migration to online learning and work, and attending to the emergent needs of law school community members – including special fundraising and services to address the needs of financially insecure students.

He launched new programs in Environmental Law, Transactional Skills, Human Rights, and Health Disparities, spearheaded the creation of a new SJD Program, launched new high-profile international partnerships and significant new diversity, equity and inclusion efforts, and led the law school’s prominent response to the national racial justice reckoning. He helped launch both the ABA Legal Education Police Practices Consortium as well as the Florida Law Schools’ Consortium for Racial Justice.

Before becoming Dean at Miami Law, Professor Varona was Vice Dean, Associate Dean for Faculty and Academic Affairs, and Professor of Law at American University Washington College of Law (AUWCL). Before his 14 years at AUWCL, Professor Varona was an associate professor at Pace University School of Law in New York and adjunct professor at Georgetown University Law Center. He has taught courses in Contracts, Administrative and Public Law, Media Law, Sexuality and Gender Law, Intellectual Property, and Criminal Law.

Professor Varona has written extensively in the areas of media and sexuality law, and has published solo and co-authored pieces with notable law reviews/journals, including those associated with American, Columbia, Georgetown, Harvard, Seattle, and Stanford Universities, NYU, the College of William & Mary, and the Universities of Michigan and Minnesota. He is a co-author of the second, third, and fourth editions of the casebook Administrative Law: A Contemporary Approach, published by West, has served as a Huffington Post contributor, and has appeared in national and regional media outlets as a commentator.

Professor Varona is a member of the AALS Membership Review Committee, and a former co-editor of the AALS Journal of Legal Education. He has served as a member of the Executive Board of the AALS Section on Teaching Methods and on the AALS Associate Deans Section’s Planning and Nominations Committee. In addition, he has served on the national board of directors for Stonewall National Museum and Archives (SNMA), for which he co-founded and for its first year co-chaired the SNMA National Advisory Council. He has served on the national boards of GLAAD, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), and the Alliance for Justice, and has been a member of the District of Columbia Bar’s Global Legal Practice Task Force. 

Before entering full-time teaching, Professor Varona was General Counsel and Legal Director of the Human Rights Campaign, the nation’s largest LGBTQ civil rights organization. In 2001-02, Professor Varona served as a Harvard Law School Wasserstein Public Interest Fellow. Earlier in his career, Professor Varona was an associate at Skadden Arps and Mintz Levin and an honors program enforcement attorney at the Federal Communications Commission.

A celebrated scholar and teacher, Professor Varona shared the 2018 Egon Guttman Casebook Award, an AUWCL Faculty Scholarship Award that “recognizes outstanding scholarship in the form of casebooks and treatises,” with Professors Andrew Popper and Mark Niles. He won the 2014 American University Faculty Award for Outstanding Teaching in a Full-Time Tenure-line Appointment and in 2011 shared an AUWCL Teaching Award for Innovation in Pedagogy. In 2007-2008, Professor Varona was named AUWCL Teacher of the Year. And in 2009, he was presented with the Hugh A. Johnson, Jr., Memorial Award by the Hispanic Bar Association of the District of Columbia, an honor recognizing “unwavering commitment and achievement [in] public service and dedication to the principles of equality, cultural respect, and social justice."

Lawyers of Color Magazine named Professor Varona to its 2020 Power List, and in 2014 the magazine named him to its “50 Under 50 List.” In 2018-2019 Professor Varona chaired the Host/Planning Committee for the Fourth National People of Color Legal Scholarship Conference, thought to be the largest gathering of legal scholars of color in history. He delivered the Jerome McCristal Culp, Jr., Memorial Lecture at the 2021 LatCrit Scholarship Conference.


Administrative Law: A Contemporary Approach, 4th ed., with Andrew F. Popper, Gwendolyn M. McKee Savitz, & Mark C. Niles, West Academic Publishing, (2021).

Communion: Envisioning and Executing the Fourth National People of Color Legal Scholarship Conference — The Largest Ever Gathering of Minority Law Scholars, 55 Harv. C.R.-C.L. L. Rev. 761 (2020).

Afterword What's Next: Into a Third Decade of LatCrit Theory, Community, and Praxis, with Steven Bender, Francisco Valdes, Shelley Cavalieri, Jasmine Gonzalez Rose, Saru Matambanadzo, Roberto Corrada, Jorge Roig, Tayyab Mahmud, Zsea Bowmani, 9 U. Miami Race & Soc. Just. L. Rev. 141 (2019).

From the Editors, with Camille Nelson, 68 J. Legal Educ. 191 (2018).

Afterword What's Next: Into a Third Decade of LatCrit Theory, Community, and Praxis, with Steven Bender, Francisco Valdes, Shelley Cavalieri, Jasmine Gonzalez Rose, Saru Matambanadzo, Roberto Corrada, Jorge Roig, Tayyab Mahmud, Zsea Bowmani, 16 Seattle J. Soc. Just. 823 (2018).

Administrative Law: A Contemporary Approach, 3rd ed., West Academic Publishing, (2016).

Latino/a Political, Community and Social Organizing, The Oxford Encyclopedia of Latinos and Latinas in Contemporary Politics, Law, and Social Movements (2015).

Administrative Law: A Contemporary Approach, 2nd ed., West Academic Publishing, (2010).

Taking Initiatives: Reconciling Race, Religion, Media and Democracy in the Quest for Marriage Equality, 19 Colum. J. Gender & L. 805 (2010).

Outsiders Inside the Beltway: LatCrit XIV, 18 Am. U. J. Gender Soc. Pol'y & L. 367 (2010).

Toward a Broadband Public Interest Standard, 61 Admin. L. Rev. 1 (2009).

Out of Thin Air: Using First Amendment Public Forum Analysis to Redeem American Broadcasting Regulation, 39 U. Mich. J.L. Reform 149 (2006).

Changing Channels and Bridging Divides: The Failure and Redemption of American Broadcast Television Regulation, 6 Minn. J.L. Sci. & Tech. 1 (2004).

Anchoring Justice: The Constitutionality of the Local Law Enforcement Act in United States v. Morrison's Shifting Seas, with Kevin Layton, 12 Stan. L. & Pol'y Rev. 9 (2001).

Politics, Pragmatism and the Courts, 2 Geo. J. Gender & L. 155 (2001).

En/Gendering Equality: Seeking Relief under Title VII against Employment Discrimination Based on Sexual Orientation, with Jeffrey Monks, 7 Wm. & Mary J. Women & L. 67 (2000).

 Media Appearances

Internet: News@TheU October 9 2020 Opinion: Will Barrett be a Consistent Conservative? Time will Tell,

Internet: Huffington Post July 11 2016 Racist Police Brutality Is An LGBT Issue,

Internet: Huffington Post June 29 2016 Orlando: Straight America's Stonewall,

Internet: Huffington Post June 14 2016 The Orlando Massacre's Latino Angle Must Not Be Erased,

Internet: Huffington Post October 25 2015 Why the Martian Is Still on Top of the World,

Internet: Zócalo Public Square July 8 2013 What Happens When Legally Married Same-Sex Couples Move to a State with a Ban?, in Up for Discussion: The Next Big Question for Marriage,

Internet: Huffington Post April 8 2013 The First Virtual March on Washington,

Internet: Pam’s House Blend February 9 2011 The Beltway Four: Suburban Washington’s Openly Gay Mayors,

Internet: Pam’s House Blend November 16 2010 Maggie Gallagher Boils Down Her Opposition to Marriage Equality: It’s All About the Children,

Internet: Pam’s House Blend November 15 2010 Former U.S. Congressman Bob Barr Again Calls for Repeal of DOMA, Endorses Marriage Equality,

Dean Varona
Phone: (305) 284-4299
Office: G372
Faculty Assistant

Amador, Clarita

Phone: (305) 284-4241
Office: G287

Area of Expertise

  • Administrative Law
  • Media Law
  • Gender and the Law
  • Intellectual Property