Post Date: May 16, 2005

In November 2003, at age 33, Jeffrey Fisher appeared twice before the Supreme Court. After finishing arguments for one criminal law case — a field which was not his specialty — he returned to the Court 15 days later to argue a second criminal case. Even more remarkably, he won both. A partner at Davis Wright Tremaine LLP in Seattle, Wash., Fisher was chosen by the 2005 Class Marshals as this year’s Class Day speaker. The address will take place on Wednesday, June 8 at 2 p.m.

“Jeff Fisher has accomplished a great deal as a young lawyer, and we believe he will deliver an inspiring address about the ways in which those new to the profession can make meaningful contributions as professionals and maintain balance in their personal lives,” said Sarah Mattson, a 3L Class Marshal.

A graduate of the University of Michigan Law School, Fisher specialized in constitutional law and clerked for Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens. In 1999, he entered private practice in Seattle but returned to the Court four years later to represent defendants pro bono in two criminal law cases: Crawford v. Washington and Blakely v. Washington.

The Court sided with Fisher 7-2 in the Crawford decision, which experts have regarded as a landmark case regarding the Sixth Amendment and the right to confront one’s accuser. The Blakely decision, which Fisher won on a 5-4 ruling, has led to fundamental changes in federal sentencing guidelines.

Fisher acknowledged the remarkable nature of his early success in this CNN report: “One of the jokes when you’re clerking (at the Supreme Court) is you spend a year working on 100 Supreme Court cases, and you spend the rest of your career trying to get No. 101. I’ve been very fortunate.”

For more information about Class Day and Commencement, please visit the Commencement 2005 website.