In the fall of 2009, we started planning a conference at Harvard Law School to celebrate the life and scholarly achievements of Bill Stuntz. Had it been up to Bill, this celebration never would have happened. “I feel uncomfortable about this,” he emailed one of us. “It all seems to me undeserved – I’m not at that level – and I would think no one would be interested in writing for or publishing it.”
Although characteristically modest, Bill was obviously wrong about his stature within the legal academy, where he is widely esteemed as the preeminent criminal procedure scholar of his generation. “Of course I’ll be there,” one leading scholar replied to our invitation. Every other invitee likewise accepted – quickly and enthusiastically, even when attendance required rearranging prior commitments.