CU Law Profiles
Faculty Profile

Barbara Bintliff

Law Library Resources, Library Technology

You may also visit my faculty home page.



Born in Houston, TX; grew up in Ellensburg, WA

Hobbies, Sports, or Extracurricular Passions

Favorite pastimes include cooking with friends, traveling, playing with my dogs and spending time with my family, gardening, avoiding having to golf with my husband

Favorite Book

Current favorites: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time, and Life of Pi. Enduring favorites: Edith Hamilton's Mythology, just about anything by Margaret Atwood, Little Women (yes, the Louisa May Alcott version; I started reading about strong women at an early age!)

Favorite Movie

A Fish Called Wanda (who can not laugh at John Cleese reciting romantic sayings in Russian as he undresses?); Kagemusha (not one of Kurosawa's best known, but definitely my favorite)

What were you doing before you came to the University of Colorado Law School?

I worked at DU Law School for five years, consulted briefly with the Environmental and Societal Impacts Group (ESIG) at NCAR, and worked for a law firm in Seattle.

What is one interesting, fun, or offbeat thing you have done in your lifetime?

I'll bet that I'm the only person on the faculty to have ridden in a rodeo. And I made my first scuba dive at the age of six off an oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico.

What do you consider to be one of your biggest accomplishments?

Raising my older son, getting him through high school and into college with my health and sanity more or less intact.

About Boulder

What do you like most about Boulder?

Climate and scenery. And my friends. Hands down.

What do you like least about Boulder?

It drives me nuts to go into local stores and find that people have brought their gigantic, sniffing, drooling, licking dogs with them. I love my dogs. And I know dogs are considered sentient beings in Boulder, and that we don't own them, we're merely their guardians. But dogs don't generally have money and usually can't purchase things, so do they really need to go shopping?

Favorite Place To Eat Out in Boulder

By far the best place is my friend Sherri's house, she's a great cook. Followed by any fancy meal my husband cooks. Followed by just about any restaurant since that means I don't have to cook. Oh, did you want a restaurant? How about (in no order) Efrain's II, Laudisio, Greenbriar, Flagstaff House, Mateo

About CU Law School

Why did you decide to become a professor?

I started out being interested in higher education law; that was my goal in law school?to be a university counsel. After law school, however, life took one of its funny turns and I found myself in the Graduate Library School at the University of Washington. I moved into academic law librarianship and found that the opportunities to teach and write were very challenging and interesting. I liked combining administrative duties like personnel management, budgeting, and planning with the more purely academic sides of the profession like teaching and writing. My career slowly evolved from one side of higher education ?law? to the other.

What do you like most about teaching at CU?

My favorite things about this law school are the really smart students, the amazingly productive faculty, and the large research university?s resources. There are opportunities to collaborate with faculty in other disciplines on just about any kind of project you can imagine. It keeps me intellectually stimulated.

What area of law are you most interested in and why?

I?m finding that, more and more, I am attracted to issues dealing with faculty and higher education; I think I?ve come full circle to return to my early ambition to be a university?s lawyer. The rights and responsibilities of faculty in general, and of tenured faculty in particular, have been occupying my time and my research for quite a while, stemming from my term of office as chair of the Faculty Assembly. I think anyone who is interested in higher education?faculty, staff, students, the general public?should have some basic understanding of the nature of a public university.

The public university is an extremely important social institution, one that provides the means by which almost any citizen can better his or her life, and improve society as a result. Universities? impact economically, socially, politically, and personally is hard to overestimate. But the rules by which a university operates, including having tenured faculty and adhering to the principles of shared governance, are so different from other institutions that not even all faculty understand them. Universities and faculties have been highly politicized in the last several years. The changing context of the university is a compelling research topic for me.

What piece of advice would you give a student about surviving being a 1L?

Take time to get away from your studies regularly. Even if you only take a short walk around campus a couple of times a week, you?ll find yourself better able to cope with the workload. And join a study group. Be careful and don?t let law school become a solitary experience; you can too easily isolate yourself. Ask questions of your classmates, and join together when you can to outline and study together. Law classes can be complex and there?s a lot of information to assimilate. Talking out loud, explaining your thinking to others, questioning, forming opinions and reaching conclusions are all an important part of the experience.

What piece of advice would you give a student about getting the most out of law school?

Get involved in something outside of class that interests you. CU-Boulder Law School has enough student organizations and activities for just about everyone. We have frequent speakers, lectures, and conferences in the building, and many more on campus. There are opportunities to write, to emphasize trial and appellate advocacy skills, to research and work for professors. Volunteer with a local organization that is in an area of interest. Do something every couple of weeks that lets you exercise your brain in a different way than preparing for class does. You might find yourself heading in a new career direction. At the very least, you?ll have an opportunity to meet new people and learn something different. And take advantage of faculty office hours. Go meet your faculty members, talk to them about class, ask them whatever?s on your mind. Get to know them. It will help you in class, it may help you get a job, and you might just make a lifetime friend.

What piece of advice would you give a 1L or 2L as they choose their 2L and 3L courses?

Take at least one class each year that is totally outside the area in which you think you want to practice. You?ll have a more rounded education, you will meet different professors and you?ll learn new and different things. Few people wind up practicing in a specialty so narrow that knowledge of others legal topics doesn?t give them a bigger perspective. I?d also suggest that you take advantage of the resources of the law school and law library. Learning good research skills now can make a tremendous different in both your time and your bottom line when you?re in the workplace.

About Choosing A Law School

What piece of advice would you give a prospective student about choosing a law school?

Pick a school that offers more than a strong academic experience. Law school can take over your life if you?re not careful; make sure that your school is in a place that offers you diversions you?ll enjoy. Everyone needs a break now and then. The opportunity to engage in outdoor sports and recreational activities, together with its amazing educational program, is one of the things that makes CU-Boulder exceptional. Boulder also offers a vibrant cultural life as well and, with Denver just down the road, the possibilities for finding something to do are almost endless.