The University of New Mexico School of Law has welcomed two full-time faculty members, Assistant Professor of Law Sonia M. Gipson Rankin, and Associate Professor of Law Laura Spitz.

“We are very pleased to have these new professors join our law school faculty,” said UNM School of Law Dean Sergio Pareja. “Over the past year, our full faculty has sought to attract and retain accomplished, diverse, and well-respected professors who will enhance the quality of our teaching and scholarship, and who will add value to the fabric of our tightly-knit and student-centric community. We are excited about the combined depth of experience our new faculty members bring.” 

Sonia Gipson Rankin

 Assistant Professor Gipson Rankin teaches in the fields of torts, constitutional law, family law, and race and the law. Gipson Rankin’s research is centered on the law and its impact on the Black American community, particularly in the areas of technology and family dynamics.

At The University of New Mexico, Gipson Rankin has served as associate dean for Curriculum and Program Development in University College and as a senior lecturer in Africana Studies. In 2018, she was honored as a Woman of Influence, by Albuquerque Business First and is a former president of the New Mexico Black Lawyers Association. 

She has served on state-wide higher education committees and regularly presents on her research at universities, civil rights and public policy conferences.

Gipson Rankin holds a J.D. from the University of Illinois College of Law and a B.S. degree from Morgan State University.

Laura Spitz

Associate Professor Laura Spitz teaches contracts, commercial law and business law. Her research focuses on laws’ role(s) in the construction of personal, community, national and regional borders and identities, with an interest in the intersection of economic law, global capitalism and social justice.

Spitz formerly served as a vice provost and associate dean at Cornell University. Her practice experience includes both domestic and international business transactions, commercial transactions, tax law, social purpose and non-profit business law, banking law and Indigenous economic development law. She has taught at Cornell University, Sorbonne, Emory University and the University of Colorado, and holds a J.S.D. from Cornell University, a J.D. from the University of British Columbia, and a B.A. degree from the University of Toronto. Spitz has served on numerous boards of directors and educational panels, and has taught as a volunteer art teacher in Albuquerque Public Schools.

About the University of New Mexico School of Law
The University of New Mexico School of Law offers the Juris Doctor (JD) and Master of Studies in Law (MSL) programs and Certificate Programs in Natural Resources & Environmental Law and in Indian Law. Known for its 9:1 student-to-faculty ratio and excellent employment rates for graduates, the UNM Law School consistently ranks high in educational value. The UNM Law School is a member of the Association of American Law Schools (AALS) and is approved by the American Bar Association (ABA).