Saturday, August 27, 2005
This week's Tax Prof Spotlight continues our series of profiles of folks starting their careers this fall as tax professors at American law schools. We hope the profiles will help introduce our newest colleagues to the tax community. [If you are, or know of someone who is, a beginning tax professor, please email me here to be included in the series.]
Andrea Monroe (Temple)
- B.A., Michigan
- J.D., Michigan
- LL.M. (Taxation), NYU
My story is pretty boring and, apart from the baseball fixation, not too unique (and that may not even be particularly unique). For most of my life, I planned on becoming the Commissioner of Major League Baseball. Plan B, if necessary (which, of course, it wouldn't be), was always teaching high school history.
So how did I get from that to here? The short answer is incredible people and the silly idea that law school would lead me to the Commissioner's office.
But I'll try a longer answer . . . I spent my undergraduate and law school years in Ann Arbor at the University of Michigan. I had the great fortune of having three dynamic tax professors during law school, and it was impossible not to get hooked on tax when taught with such care and exuberance. In particular, I had the pleasure of taking several classes with Doug Kahn who was the most wonderful teacher I had in all my years in school. Despite compelling me to speak more that I would have preferred, his passion for the subject and for teaching was infectious.
After law school, I practiced at Winston & Strawn in Chicago. Again, I was incredibly fortunate and found myself working with a great group of lawyers. My practice involved leasing and structured finance transactions. As luck would have it, these deals allowed me to combine one of my other great fixations -- airplanes -- with my work life. After two and a half years in Chicago, I moved to New York. I continued to work for Winston, and I enrolled in NYU's LL.M. program. Juggling a full-time job and life as a full-time student was quite a challenge, but the year was fabulous. For good or bad, the leasing world was experiencing a period of dramatic change and each deal presented novel and challenging predicaments for the tax lawyers. Every day was a learning experience, and it was a delight to work in such an environment.
I stayed in New York for two more years. My practice remained challenging, but some of the luster wore off. With the support and encouragement of my friends, family and one extraordinarily patient tax professor in Ann Arbor, I decided to quit my job, move back home to Wisconsin and pursue a job teaching tax.
I've spent the last two years at Northwestern University as a Visiting Assistant Professor, and the experience was invaluable. I learned so much about teaching, scholarship, reality television and life in a university from my colleagues in Chicago.
And now, I'm in Philadelphia at Temple University. Once again, I find myself feeling incredibly fortunate to have an opportunity to spend my days with such a vibrant group of people (who don't seem -- at least not yet -- to view "tax" as a dirty word). I'll be teaching Partnership Tax and Basic Tax this year, and I couldn't be more delighted. In terms of research, my primary interests center around tax shelters and the world of partnerships, which seems to confuse and intrigue me more and more as the days pass.
Otherwise, I tend to be a bit of a baseball nut. I'm an obsessive fantasy baseball player, and I try to catch as many games as I can in as many places as I can. I grew up outside of Milwaukee, which effectively means that my life as a baseball fan has been somewhat of a curse. However, I'm hopeful that my new hometown will provide me with my first October baseball experience since 1982.
Each Saturday, TaxProf Blog shines the spotlight on one of the 700+ tax professors in America's law schools. We hope to help bring the many individual stories of scholarly achievements, teaching innovations, public service, and career moves within the tax professorate to the attention of the broader tax community. Please email me suggestions for future Tax Prof Profiles. For prior Tax Prof Profiles, see here.