Professor Richard Sala was born and raised in Queens, NY. He enlisted in the Marine Corps in 1997 and served as an infantry Marine until 2007, achieving the rank of Staff Sergeant. His enlisted time included service with Marine Corps Ground Defense/Security Force, Guantanamo Bay, Cuba; 2nd Battalion, 6th Marines, Camp Lejeune, North Carolina; and 6th Marines Regimental Headquarters, Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. He deployed with the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit during this time, participating in operations in and around the former Yugoslavia, including Operation Dynamic Response in Kosovo.
In 2001, Professor Sala was selected for commissioned service through the Broadened Opportunity for Officer Selection and Training program. In 2007, he graduated from the University of Colorado at Boulder with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and International Affairs, a minor in Italian, and a certificate in Central and Eastern European History. After receiving his commission as a Second Lieutenant, he completed The Basic School and Infantry Officer Course. In 2008, he was awarded the Lieutenant Colonel Vic Taylor/Major General Edwin B. Wheeler Award for being the Distinguished Graduate of the Marine Corps Infantry Officer’s Course (Class 2-08).
In 2008, Professor Sala reported to the 1st Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion in Camp Pendleton, California, where he served as a platoon commander and company executive officer. Also, in 2008, he deployed to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
In 2010, Professor Sala was selected for service as Judge Advocate through the Excess Leave Program. He attended Vermont Law School, graduating with a Juris Doctor (Cum Laude) and a Master’s in Environmental Law and Policy (Magna Cum Laude). He was also the recipient of the 2013 Maximilian W. Kempner Award, which Vermont Law presents to the student who best embodies civility, integrity, fair-mindedness, and public service.
After completing law school, Professor Sala reported to Legal Services Support Team, Camp Pendleton, California, where he served as Trial Counsel, Legal Team Echo, and Trial Counsel and Officer-in-Charge, Legal Team Delta.
In 2015, Professor Sala reported to 1st Battalion, 4th Marines Camp Pendleton, California, and served as the Battalion Judge Advocate. During this time, Professor Sala deployed to Darwin, Australia, and served as counsel to the Commander of Marine Rotational Force-Darwin, supporting bilateral and multilateral training with the Australian Defense Force and regional allies and partners throughout the Indo-Pacific.
Upon returning from Australia, Professor Sala joined the Office of the Staff Judge Advocate, 1st Marine Division, and served as Assistant Deputy Staff Judge Advocate to the Commanding General of the 1st Marine Division.
In 2016, Professor Sala was selected to serve as an Assistant Professor and Marine Officer Instructor at the University of Rochester. While serving as Marine Officer Instructor, he earned a Master’s in Business Administration from the University of Rochester’s Simon Business School.
Upon retiring from the Marine Corps, Professor Sala joined the Civil Law Division of the New Hampshire Department of Justice and served as the Attorney for the Commissioner of the New Hampshire Department of Education.
In 2019, he joined Vermont Law School’s faculty as the Assistant Director of the Academic Success Program and an Assistant Professor of Law. In January 2021, Vermont Law appointed Professor Sala as Director of the Academic Success Program. In October 2021, Vermont Law School appointed Professor Sala as Director of the Online Learning Program. Professor Sala currently teaches Bar Exam Skills & Tactics, Legal Methods, National Security Law, Military Justice, and Constitutional Law. He is also the faculty advisor to The Vermont Law School chapter of The Federalist Society and Phi Alpha Delta.
Professor Sala is a member of the Bar in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and the State of New Hampshire. He is also admitted to membership in the Bar of the United States District Court District of New Hampshire and the United States Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces.
In 2021, New Hampshire Governor Christopher T. Sununu nominated Professor Sala to serve as a member of the New Hampshire State Board of Education. The New Hampshire Executive Council approved Professor Sala’s nomination in February 2021.