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Susan Apel, Vermont Law School

Susan B. Apel

Professor of Law Emerita

JD, Northeastern University, Boston, 1977

BA, Pennsylvania State University, University Park, 1974

Susan B. Apel


Professor Susan B. Apel is recognized for her work in family law and gender issues, including child custody, assisted reproductive technology, and abortion. She created and taught a seminar on medical/legal issues and reproduction held at the Dartmouth Medical School, where she has been an adjunct professor since 1998. Classes include students from Vermont Law School and Dartmouth Medical School.

Professor Apel earned her BA degree from Pennsylvania State University in 1974 and her JD degree from Northeastern University School of Law in 1977. After receiving her law degree, she became staff attorney and co-director of Keystone Legal Services in Huntingdon, Pennsylvania. She joined the Vermont Law School faculty in 1982, serving as staff attorney and co-director of the South Royalton Legal Clinic from 1982 to 1987. She had been associate director of the General Practice Program, which integrates substantive law and professional skills, since 1988 and assumed the directorship from 2001 to 2014. Her 1989 article, "Custodial Parents, Child Sexual Abuse, and the Legal System: Beyond Contempt," was cited by the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee during hearings on child sexual abuse and by the U.S. Senate Committee for Government Affairs in enacting the District of Columbia Civil Contempt Imprisonment Limitation Act of 1989. She presented "Bringing Theater Techniques to the Classroom" at the Association of American Law Schools' Conference on New Ideas for Experienced Teachers in Calgary, Alberta, in 2001, and presented "Gender and Invisible Work Revisited" at Harvard Law School in 2002. She was a charter member of the advisory committee to the Institute for Law School Teaching at Gonzaga University School of Law.

More recently, Professor Apel was a guest blogger on Gender and Law blog, has been a contributor to the Bioethics Forum, the Shriver Report, and is concentrating on writing op-eds and creative non-fiction.



Teaching Law and Medicine on the Interdisciplinary Cutting Edge: Assisted Reproductive Technologies, 38:2 J. Law, Medicine & Ethics 420 (Summer 2010)​​.​
Cryopreserved Embryos: A Response to “Forced Parenthood” and the Role of Intent, FAMILY LAW: BALANCING INTERESTS AND PURSUING PRIORITIES (L. D. Wardle and C. S. Williams, eds., edited version, 2007)​.​

Cryopreserved Embryos: A Response to “Forced Parenthood” and the Role of Intent, 39, no. 3 Family Law Quarterly 663 (original version, 2005).​

Collaborative Law: A Skeptic’s View, 30, no. 1 VERMONT BAR JOURNAL 41(2004)​.​
Genetic Testing: Speaking up for Women's Privacy Interests, 6 JOURNAL OF GENDER SPECIFIC MEDICINE 9 (2003)​​
Disposition of Frozen Embryos: Are Contracts the Solution? 27 VERMONT BAR JOURNAL 29 (2001).​
​​Interdisciplinary Teaching, L. Tchr., (Institute for Law School Teaching, Spokane, Wash.) Spring 1999.​​
The Seven Principles of Good Practice in Legal Education: Good Practice Encourages Student-Faculty Contact, 49 JOURNAL OF LEGAL EDUCATION 371 (1999)​​.​
Gender and Invisible Work: Musings of a Woman Law Professor, 31 UNIVERSITY OF SAN FRANCISCO LAW REVIEW 993 (1997).​​
The Kinetic Classroom, L. Tchr., (Institute for Law School Teaching, Spokane, Wa​​​sh.) Spring 1995.​​​
Communitarianism and Feminism: The Case Against the Preference for the Two Parent Family, 10 WISCONSIN WOMEN’S LAW JOURNAL 1 (1995).


Book Review: Howard Jones and Susan Crockin, Legal Conceptions: The Evolving Law and Policy of Assisted Reproductive Technologies, 51:4 American J. Legal History (2011).​​
Book Review, Carl Horn III, LawyerLife: Finding Happiness and a Higher Calling in the Practice of Law, 30, no. 4 VERMONT BAR JOURNAL (2004)​​.​


Law and Medicine: An Interdisciplinary Simulation on Teaching from Multiple Professional Perspectives,​ Institute for Law School Teaching, Gonzaga University School of Law, Boston, MA, June 2007.​ ​​
"Interdisciplinary Teaching," poster presentation, Section of Law and Medicine, AALS Annual Meeting, Washington, D.C., January 2007​​.​
Access to Assisted Reproductive Technologies and the Role for Law,​ International Scholars Forum, Trento, Italy, June 2006.​
Why Marriage Matters, ​International Scholars Forum, Woodstock, VT, September 2005.​ ​
Cryopreserved Embryos: A Response to "Forced Parenthood" and the Role of Intent: 12th World Conference of the International Society of Family Law in Salt Lake Ci​ty, UT in July 2005. ​​
Do You See What I See?, Institute for Law School Teaching,​ Spokane, WA, S​ummer 2004.​
Gender and Law Revisited, ​Harvard Law School, March 2002.​
"The Price of Eggs: The Sale of Human Gametes," "Disposition of Frozen Embryos," and "Genetic Testing and Privacy: Who's Telling What to Whom?" Dartmouth Community ​Medical School, spring and fall 2000.​​
Policing the Conduct of Pregnant Women,​ Dartmouth Medical School, 1998.​​
Communitarianism and Feminism: The Case Against the Preference for the Two-Parent Family,​ Law and Society Annual Meeting, 1995.​​
Operation Rescue and Women as Outsiders: (Mis)shaping the (Legal) Discourse,​ Law and Society Annual Meeting, 1993.​​

Awards & Accomplishments

Awards, Honors or Grants

​E. Smythe Gambrell Professionalism Award, American Bar Association, for the General Practice Program, 2007​
Listed in Who's Who of American Women, since 1995​

Other Accomplishments or Activities

Teaching Law​, Learning French, L. Tchr., (Institute for Law School Teaching, Spokan​e, Wash.) Fall 1​994.​