Robert L. Sand joined the faculty at Vermont Law School on a full-time basis in 2016, having served as the Vermont Governor's Liaison to Criminal Justice Programs, the former elected State’s Attorney for Windsor County, Vermont, a position he held for 15 years, and a visiting professor of criminal law at Vermont Law School. He is a 1980 graduate of Hamilton College and a 1987 graduate of Vermont Law School, magna cum laude, where he served as the managing editor of the Vermont Law Review. He is a past member of the Vermont Law School Board of Trustees.
As a prosecutor, he oversaw all criminal matters arising within Windsor County. He has extensive trial and appellate experience and is a fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers. He is an outspoken advocate for reform of the nation’s drug laws and has written and spoken extensively in support of changes to drug policy. He is a frequent witness before the Vermont House and Senate Judiciary committees on a variety of criminal justice matters.
Upon stepping down as State’s Attorney, Mr. Sand worked with other criminal justice professionals to develop innovative practices in Vermont with a special emphasis on the creation of DUI Treatment Courts. He helped co-found a unique pretrial services program and Vermont’s only DUI Treatment Court.
At Vermont Law School, he co-founded the school’s criminal law clinic and hosts an annual conference on innovative criminal justice programs. As a professor, he seeks to combine doctrine and appellate cases with primary source materials from the criminal justice system, giving his students a hands-on approach to criminal law. His students are asked to explore and challenge their own opinions about crime and punishment, deterrence, rehabilitation, justice, limitations on police power, and fair and effective ways to promote public safety.
Mr. Sand is the founding Director of the Center for Justice Reform at VLS to include coordinating a new Master of Arts in Restorative Justice Degree. The Center for Justice Reform brings to VLS enhanced curricular attention to cutting-edge criminal justice issues and organizes conferences, presentations, and lectures related to justice reform efforts.