Butzel Attorney and Former Michigan Supreme Court Chief Justice Maura D. Corrigan’s Portrait Recently Unveiled to Public for the First Time in LansingJune 30, 2023
Chief Justice Elizabeth T. Clement and distinguished guests included former Chief Justice Robert P. Young, who shared personal insights into Chief Justice Corrigan’s career of service and especially her dedicated efforts to help Michigan’s children.
Justice Corrigan concentrates her practice in litigation and appeals. She served as a law clerk to Judge John Gillis of the Michigan Court of Appeals. She then became a Wayne County assistant prosecuting attorney in 1974, and Chief of Appeals in the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Detroit in 1979. In 1986, she was promoted to Chief Assistant U.S. Attorney, the first woman to hold that position. She became a partner at Plunkett and Cooney in 1989.
In 1992, former Governor John Engler appointed her to the Michigan Court of Appeals. In 1997, the Supreme Court named her Chief Judge of the appeals court. She was elected to the Michigan Supreme Court in 1998 and reelected in 2006. Justice Corrigan is the only person ever to serve as Chief Judge of both the Court of Appeals and Supreme Court. She served two terms as Chief Justice.
Justice Corrigan left the court on January 14, 2011 to become the Director of the Michigan Department of Human Services under Governor Rick Snyder. From 2015 – 2016, Justice Corrigan was a visiting fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, a think tank in Washington, D.C. where she worked on poverty and child welfare issues. In that role, she testified in Congress, authored papers and book chapters, and served as liaison to state secretaries of human services.
Justice Corrigan has participated in numerous community and professional activities. She currently serves on five nonprofit boards. She is a past president of the Incorporated Society of Irish American Lawyers and the Detroit Chapter of the Federal Bar Association.
She served as a public member of the Michigan Law Revision Commission from 1991-1998, as an executive board member of the Michigan Judges Association, and as a member of the Judicial Advisory Board of the Center for Law and Organizational Economics at the University of Kansas Law School.
She was vice-president of the Conference of Chief Justices from 2003 – 2004. She is a published author in the legal and child welfare fields. She holds seven honorary doctorates from Michigan colleges and universities, among numerous honors and awards. Notably, Justice Corrigan was named to WJR-AM 760’s 2018 Class of “Women Who Lead.”
Justice Corrigan earned her J.D. degree (cum laude) from the University of Detroit Mercy School of Law and her B.A. degree (magna cum laude) from Marygrove College.
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