Cal Poly

Orfalea College of Business

Lisa Sperow

Lisa Sperow

Director of the Low Income Taxpayer Clinic

Office 03-LITC
Phone 805-756-2920
Fax 805-756-7611

Executive Director of the Low Income Taxpayer Clinic; Law Lecturer

Lisa Sperow

Elisabeth “Lisa” Sperow has been the Executive Director of the Cal Poly Low Income Taxpayer Clinic since October of 2012.  After growing up on the Central Coast, she graduated with Honors from the University of California, Davis with a degree in International Relations and first in her class from The University of Oklahoma College of Law. After law school, Sperow clerked for the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit.  She then entered the Honors Program for the United States Department of Justice. She served as a trial lawyer in DOJ’s Civil Division, Commercial Litigation Branch in Washington, D.C. before returning to the Central Coast to join the Accounting and Law Area at the Orfalea College of Business in 2001. Sperow has taught courses in International Law, Business Law, Constitutional Law, Business Ethics, Torts, Legal Research and Writing, Applied Accounting Auditing and Tax Research, and Employment Law at Cal Poly, The George Washington University College of Law, and Cuesta College.  She also actively volunteers in her community by serving as a Judge Pro Tem for the San Luis Obispo County Superior Court, a Fellow to the American Bar Foundation, the Legal Advisor for Community Action Partnership, a Board Member for the San Luis Obispo County Women Lawyers Association, and an Attorney Coach for the Arroyo Grande High School Mock Trial Team. Sperow is a member in good standing of the California Bar Association and is also admitted to practice before the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit and the United States Tax Court.  She frequently speaks at local and national conferences on issues related to taxation, effective legal representation, constitutional rights, and legal ethics.


  • Juris Doctor with Highest Honors, University of Oklahoma, College of Law
  • B.A. with Honors in International Relations, University of California, Davis

Professional Experience

  • Legal Consultant, Community Action Partnership-SLO
  • Judge Pro Tem, San Luis Obispo County Superior Court
  • Trial Attorney, United States Department of Justice, Civil Division, Washington, D.C.
  • Judicial Law Clerk, United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit

Areas Published

  • Taxation
  • Judicial Process
  • Constitutional Law
  • Health Law
  • Bankruptcy

Professional Associations & Activities

  • Fellow of the American Bar Foundation
  • Board Member of the Women Lawyers Association of San Luis Obispo County
  • Attorney Coach for Arroyo Grande High School Mock Trial Team
  • Vice Chair of the Arroyo Grande Planning Commission
  • Commissioner for the Arroyo Grande Parks & Recreation Commission
  • Ad Hoc Editor for Wadsworth Publishing
  • Participant in the California Bar Leadership Conference
  • Member: American Bar Association, California Bar Association; California Women Lawyers Association; San Luis Obispo County Bar Association
  • Lifetime member of Beta Sigma Gamma and Order of the Coif

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