Judge Myron Bright Receives American Inns of Court Professionalism Award for Eighth Circuit

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School of Law


Judge Myron H. Bright has been selected to receive the American Inns of Court 2012 Professionalism Award for the Eighth Circuit. The award will be presented by Chief Judge William Jay Riley of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit, in Kansas City, MO, on Thursday, August 9, 2012.

A senior judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit since 1985, Bright was appointed to the bench by President Lyndon B. Johnson in 1968. During a career spanning more than four decades, he has considered more than 6,000 cases.

Judge Myron BrightA World War II veteran in the Asia-Pacific Theatre, Bright attained the rank of captain in the U.S. Army Air Corps. He holds both a BSL and a JD from the University of Minnesota. He was admitted to the North Dakota bar in 1947 and practiced law at Wattam, Vogel, Vogel, Bright & Peterson in Fargo, ND, where he became known as a skilled litigator in torts, First Amendment rights, privacy, and human rights cases.

Considered a model of professionalism, ethics, service, and civil rights by his peers, Bright has received numerous awards, including, the State Bar Association of North Dakota's Liberty Bell Award and the American Judicature Society's Herbert Harley Award. His former law clerks honored him by endowing the Judge Myron H. Bright Scholarship at the University of Minnesota Law School.

A sought-after lecturer at law schools both nationally and internationally, Bright has displayed a special commitment to legal education. He was a distinguished professor of law at Saint Louis University School of Law from 1985 to 1990 and professor emeritus from 1990 to 1995. Bright was an early pioneer for the Jurists-In-Residence programs at several law schools. While serving on the International Judicial Relations Committee of the Judicial Conference of the United States, he supported a program for foreign lawyers attending American law schools to be observers with federal and state judges. The William S. Richardson School of Law at University of Hawaii named its international jurists-in-residence program after him. The University of North Dakota School of Law awarded him its Lifetime Achievement Award for his outreach efforts in legal education.

In nominating Bright, James S. Hill wrote "He is a person deeply committed to professionalism and particularly to improving the legal system and profession, by teaching new generations of lawyers."