St. John’s University School of Law
Dean Cunningham has served in a variety of roles in the Law School administration: Vice Dean (2016-18), Associate Academic Dean (2013-16), Associate Dean for Student Services (2011-13), and Assistant Dean for Students (2010-11). In his current role as Associate Dean for Assessment and Institutional Effectiveness, Dean Cunningham oversees the Law School’s processes related to the assessment of student learning outcomes, strategic planning, and the use of data to inform decisionmaking. Dean Cunningham is a member of the University’s Strategic Priorities Review Team.
Dean Cunningham teaches Evidence, Appellate Advocacy, Legal Writing, Criminal Procedure: Adjudication, Criminal Law, and New York Criminal Practice. In both 2012 and 2017, he received the Dean’s Teaching Award (large class) for Criminal Law and Evidence, respectively. He combines a mix of teaching styles to promote active learning and utilizes technology, assessment, and “flipped classroom” techniques to further students’ learning. In 2016, Dean Cunningham was awarded a grant from the U.S. Fulbright Specialist Program to teach at the Royal University of Law and Economics in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.
Dean Cunningham’s scholarship includes research in criminal justice ethics, criminal procedure, appellate practice, juvenile justice, mental health law, and insurance law. He has been a frequent speaker on legal education and other topics before bar associations, law schools, and other organizations. In June 2008, he testified before the United States Senate Judiciary Committee, Subcommittee on the Constitution, on the legality of laptop searches at the international border. He currently serves as co-chair of the New York State Bar Association, Committee on Legal Education and Admission to the Bar.
After clerking for a United States district judge, Dean Cunningham served as an Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney in Alexandria, Virginia, where he was in charge of juvenile delinquency prosecutions. Later, he was an Assistant District Attorney in the Appeals Bureau of the Bronx District Attorney’s Office, where he also coordinated the office’s post-adjudication insanity review cases and served as an on-call homicide duty prosecutor. He brings this experience as a trial and appellate lawyer to his role as Director of the Center for Trial and Appellate Advocacy, the home to the Law School’s programs in moot court and mock trial.
Prior to joining the St. John’s faculty, Dean Cunningham was a professor at Texas Tech University and held visiting appointments at Stetson University, Texas Wesleyan University, and Brooklyn Law School.
Dean Cunningham received his J.D. magna cum laude from Georgetown University Law Center, where he was an Executive Editor of the Georgetown Law Journal’s Criminal Procedure Project, Executive Director of the Barristers’ Council, and was elected to the Order of the Coif. He graduated summa cum laude and valedictorian of John Jay College of Criminal Justice. In 2012, he received a Master Certificate in Strategic Organizational Leadership from Villanova University. He is a Certified Six Sigma Green Belt and admitted to practice law in New York, Texas, and Virginia. He is currently pursuing a Graduate Certificate in Assessment and Institutional Research from Sam Houston State University.