Deleso A. Alford Bio
Professor Deleso A. Alford is a Shreveport, Louisiana native doing ground-breaking work bridging legal and medical education by telling stories—what she refers to as "HER stories"—the unique and particularized lived experiences of black women intersecting with health care and research. She has moved her scholarship into classrooms and the courtroom, benefiting law and medical students, society at large with her racially inflected lessons.
Professor Alford earned a B.S., magna cum laude at Southern University A&M College, a J.D. at Southern University Law Center, and an LL.M. at Georgetown University Law Center. She has a Certification in Clinical Bioethics from the Medical College of Wisconsin.
Deleso A. Alford, the Rachel Emanuel Endowed Professor is also serving as the director of the off-campus instructional site (OCIS) team facilitating the establishment of a pathway to legal education opportunities to the north Louisiana region, https://www.sulc.edu/news/4211. She was recently appointed as the Managing Fellow for the Southern University Law Center (SULC) Health Equity Law & Policy Institute.
On March 14, 2023, SULC Health Equity Law & Policy Institute held its inaugural Henrietta Lacks Symposium: “Seeing Women Through the Lens of Genetic Justice, Reproductive Justice, and Criminal Justice.” Professor Alford’s panel entitled, “Genetic Justice & Medical Racism Panel” featured Civil Rights Attorney Ben Crump and fellow panelists Kim Parker, Doug Rendleman, Yusuf Henriques, Caprice Roberts, and Robert Klonoff. https://www.sulc.edu/news/5579.
During the presentations, both Co-lead Counsel Ben Crump and Co-Counsel Robert Klonoff for the Lacks family's current litigation, Estate of Henrietta Lacks v. Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc. (US. Dist. MD) noted that Alford’s 2012 law review article, "HeLa Cells and Unjust Enrichment in the Human Body" published in the Annals of Health Law played a major role in the genesis and framing of the lawsuit. She also wrote an amicus brief in the above-referenced case.
Since Fall 2019, Professor Alford has taught the following courses: Conflict of Laws, Basic Civil Procedure, Federal Jurisdiction, Law and Racism and Torts II at SULC. Additionally, she facilitates virtual chat cultural competency teaching modules for an audience consisting of LSU Health Sciences Center Shreveport School of Medicine, School of Graduate Studies, and School of Allied Health Professions.
Prior to SULC, Professor Alford taught full-time at Barry University School of Law (2006- 2008), Florida A&M University College of Law, (2008- 2018). At FAMU COL Professor Alford taught Bioethics and the Law, Torts I and II, Race and the Law, Critical Race Theory and a course entitled, “The Cuban Legal System and Society” with a Spring Break in Cuba study abroad travel component. Additionally, she served as an Adjunct Faculty, Associate Professor of Medicine (Medical Education) at University of Central Florida (UCF) College of Medicine (2014- 2019 and has served as the Co-Director of Director of the Longitudinal Curricular Themes (LCT) in Culture, Health, and Society (2014- 2018).
A list of representative publications include:
Alford, Deleso, “Dignity for Henrietta Lacks Is Worth Fighting For” Word in Black, May 16, 2022, available at https://wordinblack.com/2022/05/dignity-for-henrietta-lacks-is-worth-fighting-for/
Repository Citation Alford, Deleso A. (2022) “A Time to Train” the next Generation of Legal Professionals to Become Culturally Competent While Practicing Humility," LSU Journal for Social Justice & Policy: Vol. 1, Article 5. Available at: https://digitalcommons.law.lsu.edu/jsjp/vol1/iss1/5
Alford, Deleso, excerpt from article: Critical Race Feminist Bioethics: Telling Stories in Law School and Medical School in Pursuit of "Cultural Competency", 72 Alb. L. Rev. 961.Valdes, Francisco, et al. Critical Justice: Systemic Advocacy in Law and Society. West Academic Publishing, 2021.
Alford, Deleso, A Call for Medical Students to Learn the Full Story about the “Father of Gynecology” Clinical Trials and Human Subjects Research, Hastings Bioethics Forum, Health and Health Care, October 5, 2017, available at http://www.thehastingscenter.org/call-medical-students-learn-full-story-father-gynecology/
Barkley, Lisa, Alford, Deleso. Medical Ethics and Health Equity: The Henrietta Lacks Story. MedEdPORTAL Publications; 2015. Available from: http://dx.doi.org/10.15766/mep_2374-8265.10276
HeLa Cells and Unjust Enrichment in the Human Body, 21 Annals Health L. 223 (2012)
Examining the “Stick” of Accreditation for Medical Schools through Reproductive Justice Lens: A Transformative Remedy for Teaching the Tuskegee Syphilis Study, 26 J. Civ. Rts & Econ. Dev.153 (2011)
Critical Race Feminist Bioethics: Telling Stories in Law School and Medical School in Pursuit of “Cultural Competency” 72 Alb. L. Rev. 961 (2009)
The Anatomy of a “Pantsuit”: Performance, Proxy and Presence for Women of Color in Legal Education, 30 Hamline J. Pub. L. & and Pol’y 605 (2009)
Hurricane Katrina and Collective Identity: Seeing Through A “Her-storical Lens”, 31 Nova L. Rev. 325, (2007)
Every Shut Eye, Ain’t Sleep: Exploring the Impact of Crack Cocaine Sentencing and the Illusion of Reproductive Rights for Black Women from a Critical Race Feminist Perspective, 13 Am. U. J. Gender Soc. Pol’y & L. 1 (2004)
Exploring the Black Wombman’s Sphere and the Anti-Lynching Crusade of the Early Twentieth Century, 3 Geo. J. Gender & L. 895 (2002)
Roots, Resistance and Responsibility: The World Conference Against Racism, Reflections Magazine, Vol. 15, No. 3 (Fall 2001)
Professor Alford is the Senior Editor and author of an Encyclopedia entry entitled “Medical Experimentation and Surgery, Enslaved Women in America: An Encyclopedia”, Editor in Chief, Daina Ramey Berry (Greenwood Press/ABC-CLIO, 2012). She is a Monument Planning Committee member for Anarcha, Lucy and Betsey, The Mothers of Gynecology. https://www.anarchalucybetsey.org/meet-the-team
Her book in progress, Tuskegee's Forgotten Women: The Untold Side of the U.S. Public Health Services Syphilis Study, sheds light on how women were directly involved in and/or impacted by the U.S. Public Health Services Syphilis Study. This book offers an acknowledgment of the importance of women's voices, and especially black women's voices, in history.
She is a past Fulbright Scholar in Senegal/Cote d’Ivoire; former Delegate to the World Conference Against Racism in Durban, South Africa (2001); and past member of the American Bar Association (ABA) Special Committee on Bioethics and the Law (2015-2016). As a long-standing member of the National Bar Association (NBA) Law Professor’s Division and Planning Committee Member, she has participated during NBA International Affiliates Continuing Legal Education (CLE) meetings including Salvador da Bahia, Brazil (May 17 - 21, 2014) and Havana, Cuba (May 22 - 27, 2016). Professor Alford was appointed as NBA Assistant Secretary and Special Assistant to the NBA President for the International Affiliates Trip during Bar Year 2019-2020. Currently she serves as the NBA Secretary for South Africa Intern Affiliate. Professor Deleso Alford was appointed to Governor Bel Edwards' COVID-19 Taskforce on the Public and Regulatory Policy subcommittee. (April 2020) https://www.sulc.edu/news/alford-appointed-to-covid19-taskforce.