Gregory Richard

Born and raised in Acadiana, home of Cajun delicacies such as boiled crawfish and étouffée, Gregory grew up in Opelousas, Louisiana. He attended the University of Louisiana at Lafayette and graduated with an Honors Bachelor of Arts degree in 2001, majoring in history and minoring in criminal justice. 

Somewhere in between graduate school in history and law school, his faculty friends and advisors nudged him toward law school with harrowing stories of graduate education, finding a job, a crowded PhD market, breadlines, soup kitchens, etc. He thus attended the Paul M. Hebert Law Center at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge where he earned a Juris Doctor and a Bachelor of Civil Law in 2004. 

During law school, Gregory clerked for the Louisiana Department of Justice and worked with the Innocence Project–New Orleans. While the study of law fascinated him, the actual practice of law left much to be desired. He also discovered that the job market in law was no less harrowing than in academia. 

Longing to be back in academia to study and teach his first true love–history–he once again became a Ragin’ Cajun and earned his Master of Arts degree in history from the University of Louisiana in 2008. He then decided to be a “rebel” and head “north” to attend the University of Mississippi, where Gregory earned his Doctor of Philosophy in history in 2013. 

His dissertation, titled “Rule of Three: Federal Courts and Prison Farms in the Post Segregation South,” examined the federal court reform of 3 prison farms in Arkansas, Mississippi, and Louisiana during the 1960s and 1970s. In particular, it focused on the work of 3 specific federal court judges in the Deep South.

Deciding that he would only feel at home along the Mississippi River, Gregory accepted the position of Associate Professor of History and Legal Studies in the fall of 2013. 

His research and teaching interests include: 

  • United States Constitutional and Legal History
  • United States history after the Civil War
  • Modern US history
  • the Civil Rights Movement
  • the history of the carceral state in the United States
  • prison reform and corrections history in general and the federal courts work during the Civil Rights Movement

View Dr. Richard’s CV (PDF).

Gregory Richard (JD, PhD)
Professor, Director of Legal Studies Program

Minne Hall 209


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