중앙데일리

Lawyer makes history as youngest SNU professor

Jan 24,2009
John M. Leitner
Seoul National University, Korea’s leading university, announced on Monday that it is going to make U.S. lawyer John M. Leitner, 27, the youngest professor in the school’s history.

The lawyer is set to give lectures in U.S. law, corporate and industrial law as well as copyright law.

Leitner, born in 1982, graduated cum laude from Harvard Law School in 2007. He was also the editor of Harvard JOLT, or Harvard Journal of Law and Technology, a distinguished semi-annual student publication of Harvard Law School that was established in 1988.

Leitner took an early interest in Asian society. During his university days, he interned at the Japanese branch of global law firm Baker and McKenzie in Tokyo. It was there that he developed an interest in Korea, especially Korea’s relationship with neighboring Japan.

“Mr. Leitner developed an interest in Korea while working as an intern at a law firm in Tokyo. There, he took classes in Korean law,” said Chung Sang-jo, dean of the university’s law school. “He has interest not only in Korean law, but Korean culture and history as well.”

Leitner wrote a thesis on Korea and Japan’s battle over copyright issues. He is set to teach law courses at SNU as early as the fall semester this year.

Before Leitner, the youngest professor at Seoul National University had been Kim Hyeon-jin, who was only 29 at the time of his appointment in 2005. Kim is a professor at SNU’s machinery and aviation engineering department.

Leitner was picked from among 27 other foreign applicants for the position. After the school narrowed the applicants to the final two, Leitner went through a resume application, interviews and thesis reviews by SNU professors before being chosen.

He currently works as a lawyer at Cravath, Swaine and Moore LLP, a large U.S. law firm based in New York City.


By Cho Jae-eun Staff Reporter [jainnie@joongang.co.kr]


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