Frederick Gedicks

Prof. Frederick Gedicks

Guy Anderson Chair and Professor of Law, Brigham Young University Law School

Professor Gedicks holds the Guy Anderson Chair, one of three endowed chairs at the Law School. He is widely published on law and religion, constitutional law, and constitutional interpretation, including two books,The Rhetoric of Church and State: A Critical Analysis of Religion Clause Jurisprudence (Duke University Press, 1995), and  Choosing the Dream: The Future of Religion in American Public Life (Greenwood Press, 1991) (with Roger Hendrix).

Professor Gedicks is an active defender of the contraception mandate of the Affordable Care Act and opposes efforts by owners of for-profit businesses to obtain religious exemptions from the mandate. See "One Cheer for Hobby Lobby: Improbably Alternatives, Trutly Strict Scrutiny, and Third-Party Employee Burdens," 38 Harvard Journal of Law & Gender 153 (2015); "RFRA Exemptions from the Contraception Mandate: An Unconstitutional Accommodation of Religion," 49 Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review (Spring 2014); (with Rebecca Van Tassell); "Invisible Women" Why an Exemption for Hobby Lobby Would Violate the Establishment Clause," 67 Vanderbilt Law Review En Banc 51 (2014) (with Andrew Koppelman); and "With Religious LIberty for All: A Defense of the Affordable Care Act's Contraception Coverage Mandate," 6 Advance 135 (Fall 2012). He was principal author and counsel of record on a U.S. Supreme Court amicus brief filed for himself and twenty other church-state scholars in the Hobby Lobbyand Conestoga Wood cases, arguing that for-profit employer exemptions would violate the Establishment Clause, and also published a widely read op-ed in the Washington Post making the same argument, "Paying for the Boss's Religion" (January 20, 2014).

Other recent publications include "Cross, Crucifix, Culture: An Approach to the Constitutional Meaning of Confessional Symbols," 13 First Amendment Law Review (forthcoming 2015) (with Pasquale Annicchino); "Incorporation of the Establishment Clause Against the States: A Logical, Textual, and HIstorical Account," 88Indiana Law Journal 699 (2013); and "Narrative Pluralism and Doctrinal Incoherence in Hosanna-Tabor," 64 Mercer Law Review 405 (2013). Professor Gedicks is currently working with Professors Robert Tuttle, Micah Schwartzman, and Nelson Tebbe on a freedom of religion casebook for West Publishing.

Professor Gedicks has lectured in Italian at universities throughout Italy, including the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart (at both its Milan and Piacenza campuses), the Graduate Institute of Sant'Anna in Pisa, and the Universities of Alessandria, Como, Florence, Genoa, Milan, Salerno, Siena, and Turin. He was a Visiting Research Fellow for the ReligioWest project at the European University Institute in Florence, Italy during November and December 2012.

Professor Gedicks grew up in New Jersey and southern California. Following graduation from law school and a clerkship on the Ninth Circuit, he practiced corporation and securities law in Phoenix, Arizona, until he entered law teaching. Professor Gedicks joined the BYU law faculty in 1990 after four years at Mercer University in Macon, Georgia, and a year at the University of Denver. He has been a visiting professor at the law schools of the University of North Carolina (Chapel Hill), the University of Notre Dame, and the University of Utah.



  • JD from University of Southern California. Class of 1980.
    Articles Editor, Southern California Law Review
  • BA from Brigham Young University. Class of 1977.
    Magna Cum Laude, with "High Honors" from Honors Program