On May 20 Michigan Chief Justice Bridget McCormack ’91 will address graduating students at NYU Law’s Convocation. McCormack was first elected to the Michigan Supreme Court in 2012. She became Chief Justice in January 2019. Before serving on the bench, she was a law professor and dean at the University of Michigan Law School, where she continues to teach.
As the Chief Justice, McCormack has promoted statewide initiatives devoted to improving the courts’ service to the public, and to improving equal access to justice. She co-chaired the Michigan Joint Task Force on Jail and Pretrial Incarceration, many of whose recommendations for criminal justice reform were signed into law earlier this year.
At NYU Law, McCormack was a Root-Tilden scholar. After graduation, she worked at New York’s Legal Aid Society and the Office of the Appellate Defender, and then became a faculty fellow at Yale Law School in 1996 before joining the faculty of Michigan Law two years later.
Her scholarship focused on the professional benefits of clinical legal education. As a professor and as associate dean for clinical affairs, she launched a broad array of clinics—including a Domestic Violence Clinic, a Pediatric Health Advocacy Clinic, a Mediation Clinic, a Low Income Taxpayer Clinic, an International Transactions Clinic, a Human Trafficking Clinic, a Juvenile Justice Clinic, and an Entrepreneurship Clinic—and helped build the clinical program at Michigan Law into one of the nation’s most highly regarded. In 2008, she co-founded the Michigan Innocence Clinic, whose students have so far exonerated over 22 wrongly convicted Michiganders.
McCormack is an editor of the ABA’s Litigation Magazine and a member of the ABA Council on Legal Education and Admission to the Bar.
Posted April 16, 2021