Kellye Y. Testy

  • Affiliate Professor of Law


Phone: (206) 616-4946

Kellye  Testy


B.A., 1982, J.D., 1991, Indiana University at Bloomington

Curriculum Vitae

Areas of Expertise

Business and Corporate Law — Contracts — Law Schools and Legal Education — Leadership in the Legal Profession — LGBTQ Rights

Selected Publications

See the full list under the Publications tab below.

Kellye Testy was the 14th dean and first woman to lead the University of Washington School of Law, a post she held from 2009-17. She now serves as the president and CEO of the Law School Admission Council.

A prolific scholar, outstanding teacher, and experienced administrator, Testy focuses her research and scholarship on contracts, corporate governance, business entities, leadership, and access to justice. She is known throughout academic and legal communities for her dedication to the rule of law and its commitment to justice and equality.

Named the nation's second most influential leader in legal education in 2017 by the National Jurist, Testy served as the president of the American Association of Law Schools (AALS) in 2016, with the presidential theme "Why Law Matters," to focus on how the law plays a critical role in setting the foundation for justice and human prosperity. She also co-chaired the AALS Section for the Law School Dean and served on the Committee on Recruitment and Retention of Minority Law Teachers and Students, the Committee on Audit and Association Investment Policy, the AALS Executive Committee, and as a member of the 2009 Planning Committee for the Conference on Business Associations. In addition to her work with the AALS, Testy has served on the Board of Governors of the Society of American Law Teachers as well as several committees of the ABA Section on Legal Education.

She has received numerous honors and awards, including the President's Award from the Washington State Bar Association, the Washington State Trial Lawyers Public Justice Award, a Puget Sound Business Journal's Woman of the Year award, and three Outstanding Teacher Awards. She has also received awards from Washington Women Lawyers and King County Women Lawyers.

Testy graduated summa cum laude from the Indiana University School of Law at Bloomington, where she was editor-in-chief of the Indiana Law Journal, John H. Edwards University Fellow, Chancellor's Scholar, and member of the Order of the Coif. During law school, she worked for Kirkland & Ellis in Chicago, and after graduation, she clerked for Judge Jesse E. Eschbach, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit. At the end of her clerkship in 1992, she began her academic career when she joined the faculty of Seattle University Law School. She became its dean in 2005.

Peer Reviewed Journals & Law Reviews

Book Chapters

  • Kellye Y. Testy, Leading for Mission, in Law School Leadership Strategies: Top Deans on Benchmarking Success, Incorporating Feedback from Faculty and Students, and Building the Endowment 225-34 (Aspatore Books 2006).
  • Kellye Y. Testy, A Market Path to Liberation?: Feminism, Economics, and Corporate Law, in Law and Economics: Alternative Economic Approaches to Legal and Regulatory Issues 55-76 (Margaret Oppenheimer & Nicholas Mercuro eds., M.E. Sharpe 2005).
  • Kellye Y. Testy, Relational Background: Donald Odorizzi's Story, in Randy E. Barnett, Contracts: Cases and Doctrine 1122-29 (2d ed. Aspen 1999).

Book Reviews

  • Kellye A. [sic] Testy, From Liberationists to Lobbyists, Lesbian Rev. Books, Fall 2001, at 12-14 (reviewing Ellen D.B. Riggle & Barry L. Tadlock, Gays and Lesbians in the Democratic Process: Public Policy, Public Opinion, and Political Representation (1999)).
  • Kellye Y. Testy, Intention in Tension, 20 Seattle U. L. Rev. 319-41 (1997) (reviewing Randy E. Barnett, Contracts, Cases and Doctrine (1995)).

Professional Publications

News Media

  • Speaker, "Law School Rankings", Women’s Leadership in Legal Academia 2019 Conference, (July 18, 2019)
  • Speaker, "AALS Plenary Program: Preparing a Diverse Profession to Serve a Diverse Worl", 111th Annual Meeting, Association of American Law Schools (January 5, 2017)
  • Moderator, "AALS President's Program: Great Expectations: The Competencies, Skills and Attributes that Employers Seek in our Graduates", 111th Annual Meeting, Association of American Law Schools (January 5, 2017)
  • Speaker, "Teaching Human Rights in Law School: Ethical Considerations in Career Choices", Human Rights Abuses: Expose the Cover-Ups, (October 14, 2016)
  • Panelist, "The Arctic as an Emerging Law Practice", Eighth Polar Law Symposium, The Science, Scholarship and Practice of Polar Law: Strengthening Arctic Peoples and Places, (September 26, 2015)
  • Panelist, with Challenges and Opportunities for Public Law Schools, Oregon's Public Universities and Colleges: Facing the Challenge, University of Oregon Wayne Morse Center for Law and Politics (September 16, 2015)
  • Panelist, "Legal Education in Transition", 125th Anniversary: Past, Present, and Future, Washington State Bar Association (June 26, 2015)
  • Panelist, "Family Law's Response to Changing Families", Workshop on Next Generation Issues of Sex, Gender, and the Law, Association of American Law Schools (June 24, 2015)
  • Speaker, "Leadership During Crisis", Washington Leadership Institute (January 24, 2015)
  • Co-moderator, "The Opportunities of Law School Leadership: Nurturing the Diverse Leaders Our Schools Need for the 21st Century", Annual Meeting, Association of American Law Schools (January 4, 2015)
  • Roundtable, "Thriving as a Dean in Today's World", Annual Meeting, Association of American Law Schools (January 3, 2015)
  • Moderator, Stateswomanship & Public Policy: Reflections on Leadership & Collaboration, William D. Ruckelshaus Center and the Slade Gorton International Policy Center (December 12, 2014)
  • Panelist, Beyond Marriage Equality Victories CLE, University of Washington School of Law (November 14, 2014)
  • Panelist, "Future of Legal Education", Ninth Circuit Judicial Conference (July 17, 2014)
  • Panelist, "Development and Alumni Relations", Deans Workshop: Our Future: Changes and Challenges, American Bar Association Section of Legal Education and Admission to the Bar (June 12, 2014)