Diane Penneys Edelman

Contact Information

Director of International Programs
Professor of Legal Writing
Villanova University School of Law
Rm 342, John F. Scarpa Hall
299 North Spring Mill Road
Villanova, PA 19085
(610) 519 - 7047

Diane Penneys Edelman is the Director of International Programs and a Professor of Legal Writing at Villanova University School of Law, where she has taught for the past eighteen years. She teaches Legal Analysis, Writing and Oral Advocacy I and II, and has previously taught Advanced Appellate Advocacy and Legal Analysis & Writing for Undergraduates.

At Villanova, she created and has taught in a unique International Advocacy course for first-year law students, in which more than 600 students have participated to date. She has written and spoken regionally and nationally about legal writing, the connection between international law and legal writing, and teaching legal writing to students whose first language is not English. At present, she serves as the President of the Lawyers’ Committee for Cultural Heritage Preservation, an organization dedicated to the preservation and protection of cultural resources in the United States and abroad through advocacy and education. She is a Vice Chair of the International Legal Education and Specialist Certification Committee of the American Bar Association’s International Law Section.

Professor Edelman is the author of the forthcoming “Legal Writing in an International Context: Persuasive Writing and Oral Advocacy – A Text for Legal Writing Courses and Law School Competitions.” She is a past member of the Association of Legal Writing Directors (ALWD), and is a current member of the Legal Writing Institute and the American Society of International Law. She also served as Chair of the Citation Manual Advisory Committee of ALWD, and Chair of the International Legal Exchange Section of the Association of American Law Schools.

Professor Edelman designed and taught in Villanova’s summer program in Montréal in 2004 and 2005. She also designed the Villanova – University of St. Thomas summer program in Rome, which she directs and in which she has taught International Art and Cultural Heritage Law since 2007. Professor Edelman has also developed and administers Villanova's JD/LLM dual degree programs in collaboration with the University of Edinburgh, the City University of Hong Kong, the University of Leiden, and Birkbeck College of the University of London, and the National University of Singapore.

Professor Edelman has been active in developing legal skills training programs for foreign lawyers and law professors. In addition to serving as a Fulbright Specialist at European Humanities University during October 2009 and April 2010, Professor Edelman has engaged in the following activities:

  • Co-Chair, Preparing for Practice: A Conference on Legal Skills Training in Central and Eastern Europe, Prague, Czech Republic (May 2005)
  • Faculty Advisor for Fulbright Scholar from Belarus (subject: legal analysis and writing) (Fall 2002)
  • Coordinator, Distance Learning at Villanova Law School program for visiting dean of the Law School of Beijing University, People’s Republic of China (May 2001)
  • Coordinator, Legal Writing, Legal Research and Technology in the Classroom, for members of the Yerevan State University Faculty of Law of the Republic of Armenia (November 2000)
  • Instructor, Legal English, International Law Institute, Washington, D.C. (intensive two-week course, summer 1998 and 1999)

Professor Edelman is a graduate of Princeton University and Brooklyn Law School, where she served as Editor-in-Chief of the Brooklyn Journal of International Law. She clerked for the Honorable I. Leo Glasser of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York and practiced law at Stroock & Stroock & Lavan in New York and at Hoyle, Morris & Kerr in Philadelphia prior to entering law teaching. In addition to her other teaching responsibilities, Professor Edelman supervises students participating in externships with Philadelphia Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts and the Barnes Foundation.