John J. Bursch

John J. Bursch

Senior Counsel and VP, Appellate Advocacy, Alliance Defending Freedom

John Bursch is senior counsel and vice president of appellate advocacy with Alliance Defending Freedom. Bursch has argued 12 U.S. Supreme Court cases and more than 30 state supreme court cases since 2011, and a recent study concluded that among all frequent Supreme Court advocates who did not work for the federal government, he had the 3rd highest success rate for persuading justices to adopt his legal position.

Bursch served as solicitor general for the state of Michigan from 2011-2013. He has argued multiple Michigan Supreme Court cases in eight of the last ten terms and has successfully litigated hundreds of matters nationwide, including six with at least $1 billion at stake. As part of his private firm, Bursch Law PLLC, he has represented Fortune 500 companies, foreign and domestic governments, top public officials, and industry associations in high-profile cases, primarily on appeal. He was inducted into the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers and serves as a member of the American Law Institute. His work has resulted in repeated listings in Michigan Super Lawyers and Best Lawyers. He is also the principal author of the Michigan Supreme Court’s Guide for Counsel.

Before entering private practice, Bursch served as a law clerk to the Honorable James B. Loken on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 8th Circuit. He received his J.D. magna cum laude in 1997 from the University of Minnesota Law School, where he served as Chief Note & Comment Editor for the Minnesota Law Review. Prior to that, he attended Western Michigan University, where he received degrees in mathematics and music performance summa cum laude. He graduated from the Lee Honors College in 1994.

Bursch is admitted to practice in numerous federal district and appellate courts, including the U.S. Supreme Court.


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