Baylor President Ken Starr will discuss the role of the United States Solicitor General during a lecture at Baylor Law School. "The 'Tenth Justice': The Solicitor General and the Supreme Court" will begin at 3:30 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 14, in the Kronzer Courtroom. The lecture is hosted by the Student Bar Association.
"The position of Solicitor General is a vital our judicial system and the representation of the interests of the United States in appellate proceedings," said Baylor Law Dean Brad Toben. "Nonetheless, few people - including lawyers -- know much about the responsibilities and activities of the Solicitor General. This address by Judge Starr will be a wonderful opportunity for our students and the general public to learn more about the office and the position of Solicitor General. It isn't often that you get to hear about a high profile, critical governmental function from one who has actually sat in the seat of responsibility. We are so fortunate to have Judge Starr sharing his experience as the Court's 'Tenth Justice.'"
Starr, who also holds the Louise L. Morrison Chair of Constitutional Law at Baylor Law School, served as Solicitor General of the United States from 1989 to 1993. During that time, he argued 25 cases before the United States Supreme Court. For the lecture, Starr will discuss the role of the Solicitor General and the relationship with the Supreme Court of the United States. Starting from the creation of the office of the Solicitor General within the Department of Justice, Starr will speak on the office's task of supervising and conducting the government's litigation in the nation's higher court.
Starr became the 14th president of Baylor University in June 2010 and has had a distinguished career in academia, the law and public service. Prior to coming to Baylor, he served for six years as the Duane and Kelly Roberts Dean and Professor of Law at Pepperdine, where he taught current constitutional issues and civil procedure. He also is of counsel to the law firm of Kirkland & Ellis LLP, where he was a partner from 1993 to 2004, specializing in appellate work, antitrust, federal courts, federal jurisdiction and constitutional law.
He served as United States Circuit Judge for the District of Columbia Circuit from 1981 to 1983, as law clerk to Chief Justice Warren E. Burger from 1975 to 1977 and as law clerk to Fifth Circuit Judge David W. Dyer from 1973 to 1974. Starr was appointed to serve as Independent Counsel for five investigations, including Whitewater, from 1994 to 1999.
Starr previously taught constitutional law as an adjunct professor at New York University School of Law and was a distinguished visiting professor at George Mason University School of Law and Chapman Law School. After graduating from San Antonio's Sam Houston High School, he earned his Bachelor of Arts Degree from George Washington University in 1968, his Master of Arts Degree from Brown University in 1969 and his Juris Doctor from Duke University Law School in 1973. He is admitted to practice in California, the District of Columbia, Virginia and the U.S. Supreme Court.
He is the author of more than 25 publications, and his book, First Among Equals: The Supreme Court in American Life, published in 2002, was praised by U.S. Circuit Judge David B. Sentelle as "eminently readable and informative...not just the best treatment to-date of the Court after (Chief Justice Earl) Warren, it is likely to have that distinction for a long, long time."
He has received a multitude of honors and awards, including the J. Reuben Clark Law Society 2005 Distinguished Service Award, the 2004 Capital Book Award, the Jefferson Cup award from the FBI, the Edmund Randolph Award for Outstanding Service in the Department of Justice and the Attorney General's Award for Distinguished Service.