Dan Klau received his B.A., cum laude and with distinction in Political Science, from the University of California, San Diego in 1984. In the fall of 1987, after three years of cogitating about his future (and selling styrofoam to make a living), he began his law trek by enrolling in Boston University School of Law. After eating, drinking and sleeping the law 24/7/365/3, he graduated summa cum laude and received the Melville M. Bigelow Scholarship Award, given to the graduating student showing the most promise as a scholar and teacher in law. Following graduation he clerked for Chief Justice Ellen Ash Peters of the Connecticut Supreme Court and then spent five years as an associate in the litigation department of Ropes & Gray in Boston, MA. In 1996 he returned to Connecticut (where he was born and raised) to join the firm of Wiggin & Dana, where he practiced until 2003 and was incredibly fortunate to have his colleague, the late Honorable Mark R. Kravitz, as his mentor. In April 2003 he joined Pepe & Hazard LLP, which merged with McElroy, Deutsch, Mulvaney and Carpenter, LLP in 2010. (Any opinions expressed in this blog are strictly Dan’s, not his firm’s.)
Since 2003, Dan has also been an adjunct professor at UConn Law School, where he teaches courses on the First Amendment and privacy law. He is also a supervising attorney for the Yale Law School Media Freedom and Information Access Clinic. In January 2018, Dan began teaching media law to undergraduate journalism students at UConn in Storrs, CT.
Dan’s practice focuses on appellate and First Amendment (particularly media law) litigation. He is frequently quoted on First Amendment and privacy issues, is the author of numerous articles and columns on appellate practice and First Amendment issues, and is a frequent lecturer on these topics. He is the author of The Little Book of Big Appellate Tips (Or How to Write Persuasive Briefs and Excel at Oral Argument), which was published in the fall of 2015.
Dan served with colleague Louis R. Pepe as legal counsel to Governor Dannel Malloy’s Sandy Hook Advisory Commission. Dan is also the President of the Connecticut Council on Freedom of Information and a past president (and current board member) of the Connecticut Foundation for Open Government. He has received multiple awards for his efforts to promote open government, including the Society of Professional Journalist’s Helen M. Loy Freedom of Information Award (2009 and 2015), the Connecticut Bar Association Pro Bono Award (2007) and the Connecticut Council on Freedom of Information’s Stephen Collins Award (2007).
Beginning in 2009, for a joint project between the Judicial Branch and the Connecticut Bar Association, Dan was the editor of CT Briefs Online, a website that posted digital copies of appellate court briefs. And in the spring of 2016, as an outgrowth of his open government work, Dan created a new public forum–CT Good Governance–for the discussion of proposals to improve the democratic process in Connecticut by applying the principles of good governance to the rules that dictate how out government makes and implements decisions.
When Dan is not practicing law, he can often be found at his piano writing songs about it. In 2004, Dan released The Billable Hour Blues, a CD of musical parodies about the trials and tribulations of being a lawyer. In September 2015, Dan released his second album of equally ridiculous lawyer songs, The Lawyer Is A
Dan was born in Hartford, CT and attended public schools in Bloomfield, graduating from Bloomfield High in 1980. He lives in West Hartford, CT with his wife, Dr. Jennifer Klau, an exercise physiologist. They have three children, none of whom exhibit any desire to become lawyers.
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