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Paul Diller

Roscoe C. & Debra H. Nelson Distinguished Faculty Scholar; Professor of Law; Director of the Certificate Program in Law & Government

Headshot of Paul Diller

Contact Information

Salem Campus

Collins Legal Center 444
245 Winter Street SE
Salem  Oregon  97301


Paul Diller is a professor of law and the inaugural Roscoe C. & Debra H. Distinguished Faculty Scholar at Willamette University in Salem, Oregon. His professional work focuses on state and local government law and public health law. He has written extensively about state preemption of local authority, as well as the structures underlying that dynamic, such as partisan gerrymandering. More recently, Diller has examined the constitutional and other legal issues that have arisen in states’ and cities’ response to the COVID-19 pandemic, particularly in their use of emergency authority.

Diller was a participant in the National League of Cities’ Home Rule for the 21st Century Project in 2019-20. In September 2017, Diller authored an amicus brief on behalf of several municipal organizations and local government law professors in Gill v. Whitford, which challenged gerrymandering of state legislative districts.

Diller graduated from the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Michigan Law School, both magna cum laude. After law school, he clerked for Chief Judge Edward R. Becker of the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit in Philadelphia. He then practiced law as a trial attorney in the Civil Division of the U.S. Department of Justice in Washington, D.C., where he litigated constitutional, administrative, and Freedom-of-Information-Act cases, among others. Diller has been a visiting professor at Lewis and Clark Law School (2022), the University of Michigan Law School (2008), and also taught in Willamette’s summer program in Shanghai at the East China University of Political Science and Law in 2013.


  • JD, University of Michigan, magna cum laude, Order of the Coif, 2001
  • BS, BAS, University of Pennsylvania, magna cum laude, 1996
Willamette University

Faculty Support

Willamette University
College of Law
245 Winter Street SE
Salem Oregon 97301 U.S.A.
(503) 370-6405