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Paul Stephen Dempsey

Full Professor - Retired

paul [dot] dempsey [at] mcgill [dot] ca (Email)

Website: McGill Institute of Air and Space Law

Curriculum vitae: Paul S. Dempsey CV [.doc] (updated January 2016)


Paul Stephen Dempsey was Tomlinson Professor of Global Governance in Air & Space Law (2002-2016) and Director of the Institute of Air & Space Law (2002-2016) at McGill University, in Montreal, Canada. He retired on June 1, 2016. 

For more than two decades, he held the chair as Professor of Transportation Law, and was Director of the Transportation Law Program at the University of Denver.  He was also Director of the National Center for Intermodal Transportation.  Earlier, he served as an attorney with the Civil Aeronautics Board and the Interstate Commerce Commission in Washington, D.C., and was Legal Advisor to the Chairman of the I.C.C. He is admitted to practice law in Colorado, Georgia and the District of Columbia. 

Professor Dempsey was a Fulbright Scholar, was awarded the Transportation Lawyers Association Distinguished Service Award, and was designated the University of Denver's Outstanding Scholar.  He was the first individual designated the University of Denver's Hughes Research Professor, and DePaul University's Distinguished Visiting Professor of Law.  The Colorado transportation community named him “Educator of the Year”, and inducted him into the Colorado Aerospace Hall of Fame.  For 23 years, he was faculty editor of the Transportation Law Journal.  He also served on the Editorial Boards of the Denver Business Journal, and The Aviation Quarterly (Lloyds, London), and currently serves on the Editorial Board of the German Journal of Air & Space Law, and as Editor-in-Chief of the Annals of Air & Space Law.  Professor Dempsey has published more than 20 books and ninety law review and academic journal articles, and scores of newspaper and news magazine editorials.

From 1986 to 1998, he was host of KWGN-TV's weekly talk show, "Your Right to Say It."  Professor Dempsey has appeared on the ABC Evening News with Peter Jennings, the MacNeil-Lehrer News Hour, ABC World Business Report, NBC Today, ABC Good Morning America, CNN Crossfire, National Public Radio, CBS Radio, NBC Mutual Radio, and other news broadcasting networks in the United States and abroad.  His editorials have been published in major newspapers and news magazines, including for example, Newsweek, the New York Times, and the Wall Street Journal.

From 1994-2009, Paul Dempsey was Vice Chairman & Director of Frontier Airlines Holdings, Inc., and Chairman of Lynx Aviation, Inc..  He was a founder and first Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Certified Claims Professional Accreditation Council, Inc., and President and Director of the Genesee Foundation, Inc.  He has also served as a consultant to U.S. and foreign airlines, railroads, motor carriers, bus companies, transportation labor organizations, industry associations, government agencies, and telecommunications companies.

Dr. Dempsey has delivered expert witness testimony and studies before the Public Utility Commissions of the states of California, Colorado, Kansas, Iowa, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Washington, the Province of British Columbia, and the courts of Missouri and Nevada.  He has testified before the transportation committees of the U.S. Senate, the U.S. House of Representatives, the Canadian Senate, and the state legislatures of Colorado, Michigan and Texas.  He has lectured in Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, the Czech Republic, Denmark, the Dominican Republic, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Kenya, Kuwait, Macau, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Papua New Guinea, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom, and the United States.


BA, University of Georgia, Journalism
LLB, University of Georgia, Law
LLM, George Washington University, International Law
DCL, McGill University, Air & Space Law, International Aviation Law

Research interests

Transportation law, air law, aviation law and regulation.