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Rhonda V. Magee

Rhonda V. Magee, M.A., J.D., is Professor of Law at the University of San Francisco, where she has taught Torts, Insurance Law, Race in American Legal History, and a course she co-created called Contemplative Lawyering. She is the author of the The Inner Work of Racial Justice: Healing Ourselves and Transforming Our Communities Through Mindfulness (Penguin RandomHouse TarcherPerigee: 2019, which broke new ground on publication as the first book of its kind to integrate mindfulness principles and practices thoroughly into the conversation on addressing race and racism in diverse settings and communities, and helping us heal from the trauma that the legacies of racism causes. A mindfulness teacher trained in Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction, and a founding advisor of the Mindfulness in Law Society, Rhonda is also an internationally-sought-after mindfulness teacher and Keynote speaker, and a thought and practice innovator of mindfulness-based social justice principles, concepts and practices. In Fall 2023, and while continuing to serve as Professor of Law, Rhonda accepted an appointment as the founding Director of the Center for Contemplative Law and Ethics at the University of San Francisco.

Professor Magee integrates mindfulness into higher education, leadership and everyday social engagement. Her work explores the intersections of anti-racist education, social justice, and contemplative practices, and offering trauma-sensitive practices to support healing, resilience, personal wellbeing and flourishing together. Grounded in the science of mindfulness, wellbeing and resilience, she integrates storytelling, movement, journaling and other research-based experiential practices for strengthening our inner resources for navigating a world of constant change. Her current work explores how Black cultural spirituality, including the quality of soulfulness, intersects with and might strengthen mindfulness applications.

In recognition of her uniquely innovative impact on the field of mindfulness and wellbeing in law, Magee was the inaugural recipient of the Reed Smith Excellence in Wellbeing in Law Award (in 2022), awarded after an independent, national selection process by the Institute for Wellbeing in Law. In January 2023, Magee received an appointment to the National Institutes of Health’s National Advisory Council for Complementary and Integrative Health, which plays a key role advising the NCCIH on forthcoming research projects and policies.

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Featured Audio Talk
Feb 13, 2021 - Self Care for Racial Justice: The Inner and Outer Work of Change

When I think of justice, I think of that project of making the world safer for all of us. We’re not born to suffer—none of us, plain and simple—no matter how unjust the circumstances we may find ourselves in. Living in this body, the opportunity to take in one breath and exhale another, and feel the possibility inherent in every moment is a reminder that no matter what difficulties we may be facing, our difficulties are not the whole story. They never are the whole story. From that place I can smile with you, and reach out toward possibility even amidst the pain.

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