The Notch pathway is gaining increasing recognition as a key regulator of developmental choices, differentiation, and function throughout the hematolymphoid system. Notch controls the generation of hematopoietic stem cells during embryonic development and may affect their subsequent homeostasis. Commitment to the T cell lineage and subsequent stages of early thymopoiesis is critically regulated by Notch. Recent data indicate that Notch can also direct the differentiation and activity of peripheral T and B cells. Thus, the full spectrum of Notch effects is just beginning to be understood. In this review, we discuss this explosion of knowledge as well as current controversies and challenges in the field.