Marci A. Hamilton is one of the United States’ leading church/state scholars, a senior fellow at the University of Pennsylvania’s Program in Religion and Urban Civil Society, and holds the Paul R. Verkuil Chair in Public Law at the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law at Yeshiva University. With master’s degrees in English and philosophy, she earned her JD at the University of Pennsylvania, where she served as editor-in-chief of the University of Pennsylvania Law Review. Hamilton clerked for U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor and Judge Edward R. Becker, and she successfully challenged the constitutionality of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) at the Supreme Court in Boerne v. Flores in 1997. She is considered the leading national advocate for the victims of the RFRAs and the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act (RLUIPA).
Hamilton is the author of several books, most recently God vs. the Gavel: The Perils of Extreme Religious Liberty (2014). In addition to writing legal columns and blog posts, she also hosts RFRAperils.com, which tracks free exercise statutes in all fifty states and the federal government, and sol-reform.com, which tracks the movement for legislative reform of statutes of limitation for child sex abuse survivors nationwide. Hamilton received the 2015 Religious Liberty Award at the American Humanist Association’s Annual Conference in Denver, CO.