Cecelia M. Klingele

Professor of Law, Faculty Affiliate to UW-Madison Integrated Liberal Studies (ILS) Program, Affiliate of the Institute for Research on Poverty, Faculty Affiliate of the La Follette School of Public Affairs

Cecelia M. Klingele


Room 8110, Law School

PDF Icon Curriculum Vitae


J.D., University of Wisconsin Law School


Cecelia Klingele is Professor of Law at the University of Wisconsin Law School, where she teaches courses in criminal law, Constitutional criminal procedure, and sentencing and corrections. She is a faculty associate of the La Follette School of Public Affairs, the Institute for Research on Poverty, and the Integrated Liberal Arts Studies program (ILS). 

Professor Klingele is fascinated by the challenges of structuring and managing human behavior, particularly the behavior of those subject to the criminal legal system and those responsible for its operation. Her past work has focused on challenges in community corrections, correctional programming interventions, and the treatment of violence within the criminal legal system. She recently served as a member of the National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine's study committee examining metrics of success among people released from prison, and previously served as Associate Reporter for the American Law Institute's Model Penal Code: Sentencing revision (2012-2018), External Co-Director of the University of Minnesota Robina Institute's Sentencing Law & Policy Program (2013-2018), and co-chair of the Academic Committee of the American Bar Association's Criminal Justice Section (2009-2013). She is a member of the executive board of the Lumen Christi Institute's Catholic Criminal Justice Reform Network (CCJRN) and the leadership team of the Society of Christian Legal Scholars.

After receiving her J.D. from the University of Wisconsin Law School in 2005, Professor Klingele served as a law clerk to Chief Judge Barbara B. Crabb of the United States District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin, Judge Susan H. Black of the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, and Associate Justice John Paul Stevens of the United States Supreme Court.  She returned to the University of Wisconsin in 2009 as a visiting assistant professor, and has been a permanent faculty member since 2011.

Scholarship & Publications


Law Repository

Research Interests

  • Criminal Justice Administration
  • Sentencing and Correctional Policy
  • Community Supervision
  • Collateral Consequences of Conviction
  • Policing
  • Youth Justice


  • Cecelia Klingele served as a commentator for a workshop of premier criminal law scholars May 4-7, 2023, at the University of Notre Dame’s Kylemore Abbey Global Centre in western Ireland.

  • Cecelia Klingele moderated a discussion of "The Cold War Leadership of Pope John Paul II," a conversation with Anne Applebaum, on Feb. 23, 2022. The event was hosted by the Thompson Center and the Jean Monnet European Union Center of Excellence for Comparative Populism. Watch the event

  • Cecelia Klingele presented "Using Data to Propel Change" during the Fair and Just Prosecution conference on Dec. 10, 2021. She discussed limitations of current measures of success for programs and people within the criminal legal system, and proposed ways prosecutors could collect and use data to better guide their charging decisions and assess the programs and interventions they use. 

  • Cecelia Klingele authored a white paper for the National Institute of Justice. The paper, titled "The Role of Human Service Providers During Community Supervision," is directed toward human service professionals trying to better meet the needs of people serving terms of probation and parole supervision. Read the paper

  • Cecelia Klingele’s article, “Labeling Violence,” was published in the August 2020 edition of Marquette Law Review. The article surveys the ways that aggression and violence manifest in the lives of people not convicted of violent crime, and it explores the dangers of failing to acknowledge the reality of aggression and violence across the general population.

  • Cecelia Klingele's article, "Measuring Change: From Rates of Recidivism to Markers of Desistance," was published in the Fall 2019 edition of the Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology.

  • In May, Cecelia Klingele presented "Reimagining Youth Justice" at the 2019 Youth Services Conference: Tools for Resilience and Connection. The conference was co-sponsored by the Wisconsin Department of Children and Families and the UW School of Social Work's Wisconsin Child Welfare Professional Development System.

  • Cecelia Klingele spoke on the panel, "The First Step Act and Beyond," which addressed how the federal law relates to state-level criminal justice reform. The panel was part of the Annual Meeting of the Seventh Circuit Bar Association and Judicial Conference of the Seventh Circuit, held in May.

  • Cecelia Klingele was a participant and opening speaker at ALI & NCSL Roundtable Conference, "Current & Possible Legislative Approaches to Restoration of Rights and Opportunities," held in Washington, D.C. in January.

  • Cecelia Klingele gave a presentation entitled "Managing Prison Populations through Legislative Reform" at the West Virginia College of Law for its symposium Crime & Punishment: The Legal Ramifications of Prison Overcrowding.

  • Cecelia Klingele was on a panel at a symposium of Ohio policymakers and criminal justice practitioners titled "Ohio's Sentencing Policies and Practices, Costs and Consequences." The panel provided a national perspective on criminal justice system reform in the wake of the financial crisis.

  • Cecelia Klingele's article "Changing the Sentence Without Hiding the Truth: Judicial Sentence Modification as a Promising Method of Early Release," 52 Wm. & Mary L. Rev. (forthcoming 2010), was featured on the CrimProf Blog as one of the Top Ten Recent SSRN Criminal Law & Procedure Downloads.  The Sentencing Law & Policy Blog has called the piece a "a timely must-read."

News & Media

Teaching Areas

  • Constitutional Law
  • Criminal Law
  • Criminal Procedure
  • Law & Society

Recently Taught Courses

Lock iconProfile Admin