Nancy Gertner

Former Federal Judge for the U.S. District Court, District of Massachusetts; Senior Lecturer on Law, Harvard Law School

udge Nancy Gertner graduated from Barnard College and Yale Law School where she was a Yale Law Journal editor. She received her M.A in political science at Yale University. She has been an instructor at Yale Law School, teaching sentencing and comparative sentencing institutions, since 1998. She currently teaches at Harvard Law School. She was appointed to the bench in 1994 by President Clinton. In 2008 she received the Thurgood Marshall Award from the American Bar Association, the second woman to receive it after Justice Ginsburg. In 2010 she received the Morton A. Brody Distinguished Judicial Service Award. In 2011 she received the Mass. Bar Association's Hennessey Award for judicial excellence, and an honorary Doctor of Laws from Brandeis University. She has been profiled in the Boston Globe, the ABA Journal, Boston Magazine, and The Wall Street Journal. She has written and spoken widely on civil rights, civil liberties, employment, criminal justice and procedural issues, throughout the US, Europe and Asia. Her autobiography, In Defense of Women: Memoirs of an Unrepentant Advocate, was released in 2011; The Law of Juries, co-authored with attorney Judith Mizner, was published in 1997; updated in 2010. She has published on sentencing, discrimination, forensic evidence, women's rights, and the jury system.


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