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Charles Fried

Charles Fried is the Beneficial Professor of Law at Harvard Law School, where he has been teaching since 1961. Most recently, Fried has taught Contracts and Constitutional Law. He was also the Solicitor General of the United States from 1985 to 1989, where he argued 25 cases in front of the Supreme Court. Fried was also an Associate Justice of the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts from 1995 to 1999. Fried has authored many books, including Anatomy of Values, Right and Wrong, Modern Liberty, Contract as Promise, Making Tort Law, and Saying Where the Law Is: The Constitution in the Supreme Court, in addition to more than 30 journal articles.

project team

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jascha smilack

Project Lead for ContractsX. Jascha has a Ph.D. in East Asian Languages and Civilizations from Harvard. He taught Chinese literature from all periods at Tufts University from 2011 to 2013, and courses in East Asian Comparative Literature at Boston University in 2015.  During his graduate years at Harvard, he spent six years as a Presidential Instructional Technology Fellow and five as Assistant Director of East Asian Studies. Joining HarvardX in 2013, Jascha is also Project lead for JusticeX, Visualizing Japan (finalist for the 2015 Japan Prize for production in educational media), the First Nights series, and American Poetry. For ContractsX (finalist for the 2016 edX Prize!), Jascha served as the project lead, managing all aspects of development, including directing and producing all video, leading on instructional design, course development, administration, intellectual property, and course delivery.
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Lindsay Church

Lindsay Church is a graduate Harvard Law School. Before that, she graduated from the University of South Carolina Honors College with a degree in Journalism and Communications. Lindsay spent the past summer with the Media Legal Defence Initiative in London. After taking Professor Fried’s Contracts course as a first-year law student, Lindsay helped develop ContractsX assessments and course documents over the summer of 2015 and served as a Teaching Fellow for the course in 2015 and 2016.

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samantha sheehan

Samantha Sheehan was a Teaching Fellow for ContractsX. She holds a B.A. in Psychology from UC Santa Barbara and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. As part of the core curriculum during her first year of law school, Samantha took part in Professor Charles Fried’s live Contracts course. As a Teaching Fellow, Samantha helped manage the discussion forums and aid students as they progressed through ContractsX in 2015 and 2016.

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patrick swiber

Patrick Swiber was also a Teaching Fellow for ContractX and is a recent graduate of Harvard Law School. Before law school, he earned an A.B. in Government from Georgetown University. Patrick is originally from southern Louisiana but now lives in the New York area, where he works as a clerk for a federal judge. In his free time, Patrick enjoys flailing at golf balls and is an avid fan of the Washington Nationals.

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carol szurkowski

Carol Szurkowski was also a Teaching Fellow for ContractsX. She holds a B.A. in Classical Languages and Literatures from Dartmouth College, and is a recent graduate of Harvard Law School. In 2012, Carol was a student in Professor Fried’s Contracts course for first year law students. As the first Teaching Fellow in ContractsX, Carol authored assessments and provided feedback and image research for video and course documents.

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Meredith Parnell

Meredith Parnell is a student at Harvard Law School. Prior to law school, Meredith spent 12 years working on political and public interest campaigns throughout the country. During her first year in law school, she took Professor Fried's Contracts course and was surprised to learn how interesting contracts can be. Meredith grew up in Texas, and now lives with her wife and daughter in Cambridge, MA.

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David Clark

David Clark is a second-year student at Harvard Law School. He is originally from Kansas City, Missouri, and he attended Truman State University where he studied Political Science and Math. This past summer, he interned at the Department of Labor in Washington, D.C., working to ensure safe labor conditions for miners. David took Professor Fried’s Contracts class as a first-year law student and is a now Content Developer and Teaching Fellow with ContractsX.

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tyra walker

Tyra Walker is a second-year student at Harvard Law School. She is a born and bred New Yorker (raised in Queens) and holds a B.A. in Political Science and Human Rights from Columbia University. In her first year of law school, Tyra was a student in Professor Fried's Contacts class and was both amused and inspired by the quality of the ContractsX videos that complemented the live course. Now as a Teaching Fellow, Tyra helps to manage the discussion forums and aid students as they progress through the ContractsX course. Bon Voyage!

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ryann tagle

Ryann Tagle was the first video editor for Contracts, and was a part of the HarvardX media team for two years. He graduated from Emerson College, where he studied Visual and Media Arts and was able to gain experience working in various roles from on-set production to post-production. While Ryann is devoted to editing, he is interested in the application of video in education and enjoys learning about the courses he edits. He also left a couple easter eggs in the animations for everyone, will you find them?

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Hogan Seidel

With Ryann setting out for new frontiers, Hogan Seidel was the Video Editor for Contracts in 2016. He holds a BFA in Experimental Media from Emerson College. He and Jascha worked together on the First Nights series of courses in classical music. Hogan is a filmmaker living and working in Boston, MA. In his free time, he enjoys collecting and restoring old camera equipment. Like Ryann, he also left a couple easter eggs in the animations, how many can you find?

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Shilpa Idnani

Shilpa Idnani is a Course Development Assistant for ContractsX, and has been a part of HarvardX for just about a year. She holds a B.A. in Environmental Studies from Wellesley College, where she specialized in creating interactive computer ecosystem and hydrogeological models. Recently, she has designed, created, and collected materials for wide variety of HarvardX courses including Innovating in Healthcare, Data Analytics for Human Genomics, and ContractsX. She will be monitoring the discussion boards for technical issues with the platform and course.

Illustrations used throughout the course were drawn by Benjamin Maurer Visual Art LLC.