Michael Tigar

Prof. Michael Tigar

Professor Emeritus of the Practice of Law, Duke University School of Law; Professor Emeritus of Law, Washington College of Law, American University

Michael E. Tigar is Professor Emeritus of the Practice of Law at Duke University School of Law, and Professor Emeritus of Law at Washington College of Law, American University,Washington, D.C. He has held full-time positions at UCLA and The University of Texas. He has been a lecturer at dozens of law schools and bar associations in the United States, Europe, Africa, and Latin America, including service as Professeur Invité at the Faculty of Law of Université Paul-Cezanne, Aix-en-Provence. He is a 1966 graduate of Boalt Hall, University of California, Berkeley, where he was first in his class, Editor-in-Chief of the law review and Order of the Coif. He has authored or co-authored twelve books, three plays, and scores of articles and essays. He has argued seven cases in the U.S. Supreme Court, about 100 federal appeals, and has tried cases in all parts of the country in state and federal courts. His latest books are Trial Stories (2008) (edited with Angela Jordan Davis), and Thinking About Terrorism: The Threat to Civil Liberties in Times of National Emergency (2007). His clients have included Angela Davis, H. Rap Brown, John Connally, Kay Bailey Hutchison, the Washington Post, Mobil Oil, Fantasy Films, Terry Nichols, Allen Ginsberg, Leonard Peltier, the Charleston Five, Fernando Chavez and Lynne Stewart. He has been chair of the 60,000-member Section of Litigation of the American Bar Association, and chair of the board of directors of the Texas Resource Center for Capital Litigation. In his teaching, he has worked with law students in clinical programs where students are counsel or law clerks in significant human rights litigation. He has made several trips to South Africa, working with organizations of African lawyers engaged in the struggle to end apartheid, and, after the release of Nelson Mandela from prison, to lecture on human rights issues and to advise the African National Congress on issues in drafting a new constitution. He has been actively involved in efforts to bring to justice members of the Chilean junta, including former President Pinochet. Of Mr. Tigar's career, Justice William J. Brennan has written that his "tireless striving for justice stretches his arms towards perfection." In 1999, the California Attorneys for Criminal Justice held a ballot for "Lawyer of the Century." Mr. Tigar was third in the balloting, behind Clarence Darrow and Thurgood Marshall. In 2003, the Texas Civil Rights Project named its new building in Austin, Texas, (purchased with a gift from attorney Wayne Reaud) the "Michael Tigar Human Rights Center."


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