The 2019 Edward Ross Lecture in Litigation

The 10 Year Anniversary of the NAS Report: Two Steps Forward or One Step Back?

Presented by Michigan Supreme Court Chief Justice Bridget McCormack

March 25, 2019 | 11:45 AM
Duane Morris LLP Moot Court Room
Klein Hall • Temple University Beasley School of Law

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In February 2009, the National Academy of Sciences issued a landmark report, Strengthening Forensic Science: A Path Forward. The Report recognized the value of forensic discipline evidence but concluded that except for DNA most disciplines lacked reliable scientific research to support their findings and to be able to conclude that a piece of evidence (such as a fingerprint) came from one person to the exclusion of all others.

This conclusion was not surprising to Michigan Supreme Court Chief Justice Bridget McCormack, who, prior to her judicial appointment, co-founded and led the Michigan Innocence Project. In the decade since the Report’s release, Chief Justice McCormack has been integral to efforts to improve forensic discipline evidence – on the bench, as a member of the National Commission on Forensic Science, and as an author published in the U.S. and abroad.

About the Lecturer

Bridget Mary McCormack


Chief Justice Bridget Mary McCormack joined the Michigan Supreme Court in January 2013, and became the Chief Justice in January 2019.  

An NYU Law graduate, Chief Justice McCormack started her legal career in New York City.  In 1996 she joined the Yale Law School faculty. She then joined the University of Michigan Law School faculty, in 1998, where she taught criminal law, legal ethics, and various clinics. She was named Associate Dean for Clinical Affairs in 2002.  

Chief Justice McCormack was elected to The American Law Institute in 2013. The U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Institute of Standards and Technology appointed her to the National Commission on Forensic Science in 2014. She serves as an editor on the ABA’s preeminent journal, Litigation, and as a member of the National Conference of Bar Examiners Torts Drafting Committee. She continues to teach at the University of Michigan each year as well as publish in professional journals and law media.

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