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Professor Gloria Valencia-Weber

Gloria Valencia-Weber

Emeritus Professor of Law
B.A. 1970, M.A., 1974, Oklahoma State University
J.D. 1986, Harvard University
Member of the New Mexico and Oklahoma Bars

 Curriculum Vitae

Contact Information

 Ph.: 505-277-4101
 Office: 3411


Gloria Valencia-Weber came to the UNM law school in 1992 to establish the Indian Law Certificate Program, which debuted two years later. Through Valencia-Weber's efforts, along with others, the school's Indian Law program has become one of the top in the country.

Valencia-Weber, a bilingual child of Mexican Indian heritage, enrolled in Harvard Law School after a career that included working for the American Civil Liberties Union, coordinating a diversified students program and teaching psychology at Oklahoma State University. Because Indian Law offerings were scarce at Harvard, she learned much about that area of law on her own.

After two federal judicial clerkships (in district court and for the chief judge of the 10th Circuit), in 1990 Valencia-Weber established the country's first Indian Law certificate program at the University of Tulsa College of Law.

Since Valencia-Weber arrived at UNM, the number of Indian Law course offerings has increased significantly and Indian Law is woven throughout the law-school curriculum.

Her research focuses on the evolution of American Indian Law that includes the customary principles of tribal sovereigns. She has contributed the section on the Indian Child Welfare Act for a revision of the Felix Cohen Handbook of Federal Indian Law. In 2000, she studied the legal experience of the indigenous Maori culture in New Zealand.

In 2002, she stepped down as director of the Indian Law Certificate Program, but continues to teach and be active in the field, despite recently taking emerita status.

She is a member of the Southwest Intertribal Court of Appeals and in 2010 was appointed by President Barack Obama to serve on the national Legal Services Corp. Board of Directors.


Cohen's Handbook of Federal Indian Law (Nell Jessup Newton, et al., eds., LexisNexis 2005). (CONTRIB. AUTH.)

Chapters in Books

Santa Clara Pueblo v. Martinez in Indian Law Stories (forthcoming 2011) (Foundation Press)


Stories in Mexico and the United States About the Border: The Rhetoric and the Realities, 5 Intercultural Human Rights Law Review, 241 (2010)

Indian Law on State Bar Exams: A Situational Report, Fed. Law. Mar./Apr. 2007, at 26.

The Supreme Court's Indian Law Decisions: Deviations from Constitutional Principles, 5 U. Pa. J. Const. L. ___ (2002).

Domestic Violence and Tribal Protection of Indigenous Women in the United States, in READINGS IN AMERICAN INDIAN LAW: RECALLING THE RHYTHM OF SURVIVAL (Jo Carillo ed., 1998) (co-authored with Christine P. Zuni).

Observations on the Evolution of Indian Law in the Law Schools, 26 N.M. L. Rev. 153 (1996).

Law School Training of American Indians as Legal Warriors, 20 AM. INDIAN L. REV. 5 (1996).

Shrinking Indian Country, 27 Conn. L. Rev. 1281 (1995).

Tribal Courts: Custom and Innovative Law, 24 N.M. L. Rev. 225 (1994).