Robert Everett Johnson



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Robert Everett Johnson is an attorney at the Institute for Justice. He joined the Institute in 2014 and litigates cases protecting private property, economic liberty, and freedom of speech.

In 2014, Robert was named IJ’s first Elfie Gallun Fellow for Freedom and the Constitution. The fellowship comes with an emphasis on publishing written materials and speaking to students and others about the vital role the U.S. Constitution plays in protecting our most precious freedoms.

Robert’s views have been published in the Wall Street JournalUSA TodayWashington TimesPolitico, and other print and online venues. Robert also has testified regarding occupational licensing before the Senate Judiciary Committee and has twice testified regarding civil forfeiture before the House Ways & Means Oversight Subcommittee.

Before joining IJ, Robert was an attorney in the Washington, D.C. office of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP, where he specialized in appellate and constitutional law. Robert clerked for Justice Anthony M. Kennedy on the United States Supreme Court and for Chief Judge Alex Kozinski on the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

Robert graduated magna cum laude from Harvard Law School, where he also served as an editor of the Harvard Law Review.

Robert is a member of the Virginia and D.C. bars.

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Research and Reports

  • March 1, 2015    |    Legal and Policy Studies

    Boards Behaving Badly

    How States Can Prevent Licensing Boards From Restraining Competition, Harming Consumers, and Generating Legal Liability Under North Carolina State Board of Dental Examiners v. FTC

    In a nutshell, states should: Charge an independent “licensing ombudsman” with reviewing the actions of state licensing boards; Charge the licensing ombudsman with a mandate to promote economic competition; Make the ombudsman responsible for conducting periodic reviews to identify ways to reduce licensing burdens; and Eliminate licensing altogether for occupations where it is unnecessary.

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