Associate Dean for Research, Gerald J. Ford Research Fellow, and the Adelfa Botello Callejo Endowed Professor of Law in Leadership and Latino Studies
Professor Cortez, a Gerald J. Ford Research Fellow and the inaugural Adelfa Botello Callejo Endowed Professor of Law in Leadership and Latino Studies, teaches and writes in the areas of health law, administrative law, and FDA law. His research focuses on emerging markets in health care and biotechnology. Prof. Cortez has become one of the world’s leading legal scholars on medical tourism and other cross-border health markets, and has published several articles and book chapters on the legal and ethical implications of these phenomena. His research also addresses mobile health technologies, how to regulate innovation under aging regulatory frameworks, the First Amendment constraints on FDA regulation, immigration federalism, and alternative modes of regulation.
Professor Cortez has presented his research around the world, including to professional societies, at industry conferences, to regulators, and at several universities, including Colorado, Harvard, North Carolina, the University of Paris, Radboud University (Netherlands), Stanford, Texas, Wisconsin, and Yale. He also provides frequent commentary to the media, including the Associated Press, Chicago Tribune, CNN, the Huffington Post, the Los Angeles Times, the New York Times, NPR, WIRED, and Slate.com.
Professor Cortez has co-founded the Texas Legal Scholars Workshop and the SMU Food Law Forum. He has been a peer reviewer for some of the best legal and medical publications in the world, including Health Affairs, The Lancet, The New England Journal of Medicine, the Oxford and Cambridge University Presses, and the Yale Law Journal. He has been a consultant for the Administrative Conference of the United States (ACUS), is a member of SMU's Center for Global Health Impact, and is a mentor to health care technology start-ups for the incubator Health Wildcatters.
Before joining the SMU faculty, Professor Cortez practiced with the Washington D.C. law firm Arnold & Porter, as part of its pharmaceutical, health care, and biotech practice. He represented clients in health care regulatory matters, with a special emphasis on health care fraud and abuse, FDA enforcement, privacy, and the Medicare and Medicaid programs. He represented clients during litigation, in corporate transactions, during agency enforcement actions, and during congressional investigations and hearings. While at Arnold & Porter, Professor Cortez litigated pro bono cases with the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF), and was a Board Member of the D.C. Hispanic Bar Foundation. In 2006, he was a Visiting Assistant Professor at Rutgers-Camden Law School.
In 2013, Professor Cortez and Glenn Cohen received a grant from the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University to host an Exploratory Seminar on Mobile Health. In 2015, Professor Cortez was awarded a university-wide Gerald J. Ford Research Fellowship.