William Banks has accepted the invitation of HWS President Mark D. Gearan to deliver the first President's Forum lecture, starting at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 27 in the Geneva Room of Warren Hunting Smith Library.
Banks’ talk, “Can Human Rights Survive the War on Terrorism,” will coincide with the Colleges' observance of Constitution Day. The talk is free and open to the public.
Banks is a professor of law at Syracuse University and the Director of the Institute for National Security and Counterterrorism. He holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Nebraska, and his master’s and doctorate from the University of Denver.
An internationally recognized expert on constitutional and national security law and counterterrorism, he has for nearly 20 years helped set the parameters for the relatively new field of national security law.
In conjunction with Steven Dycus, Arthur Berney and Peter Raven-Hansen, Banks wrote the leading textbook in the field, “National Security Law,” first published in 1990 by Oxford University Press and now in its third edition.
Banks is also the author of numerous other books, book chapters and articles including “Constitutional Law: Structure and Rights in Our Federal System,” “Troops Defending the Homeland: The Posse Comitatus Act and the Legal Environment for a Military Role in Domestic Counter Terrorism,” and “Targeted Killing and Assassination: The U.S. Legal Framework.”
In addition to teaching United States law subjects, he lectures extensively on these and other national security and Constitutional law-related topics and on comparative legal systems. He has spoken throughout the United States and Canada and in South and Central America, the Caribbean, Asia, Africa, and Europe.
His current research interests include domestic and international terrorism, emergency powers, covert war powers, problems of official corruption, civil/military relations, and appropriations powers.
Banks joined the faculty of the SU College of Law in 1978. Since 1998, he has also been a Professor of Public Administration in the university's Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs. He was named the Laura J. and L. Douglas Meredith Professor for Teaching Excellence in 1998.
He was also named Special Counsel to the United States Senate Judiciary Committee in 1994, and worked with that committee on the confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominee Stephen G. Breyer.
Constitution Day commemorates the Sept. 17, 1787, signing of the Constitution by the 55 delegates to the Constitutional Convention; it was their final meeting.