B.A., University of Iowa; J.D., New York University
Professor Olson-Gault is Director and Chief Counsel of the American Bar Association Death Penalty Representation Project, where she works to improve the quality and availability of legal representation for those charged with or convicted of capital crimes in the United States. Her efforts include educating the public, the judiciary, and the bar about the importance of qualified counsel; leading systematic litigation efforts in jurisdictions that fail to provide necessary defense services; and recruiting volunteer lawyers from civil law firms to represent death-sentenced persons without counsel. Professor Olson-Gault serves as a national expert on the ABA Guidelines for the Appointment & Performance of Defense Counsel in Death Penalty Cases. She routinely provides training and technical assistance to capital defenders and pro bono counsel. She has also testified about the requirements for effective capital defense representation in cases throughout the United States and before the Committee to Review the Criminal Justice Act Program.
Professor Olson-Gault graduated from New York University School of Law in 2006. Prior to joining the ABA, she was in private practice, where she began working on death penalty cases as a volunteer lawyer. While in law school she worked on capital habeas cases and represented criminal defendants in federal court through NYU’s clinical programs.