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VALPARAISO UNIVERSITY LAW SCHOOL DEAN ANDREA D. LYON RECEIVES THE ABNER J. MIKVA AWARD FROM THE AMERICAN CONSTITUTION SOCIETY FOR LAW AND POLICY

Dean Andrea D. Lyon at the Chicago Legal Legends Luncheon. Lyon was awarded the 2017 Abner J. Mikva Award by the American Constitution Society for Law and Policy.

Valparaiso University Law School is pleased to announce that Dean Andrea D. Lyon was recently awarded the 2017 Abner J. Mikva Award by the American Constitution Society for Law and Policy (ACS). The award was presented at the 12th Annual Chicago Legal Legends Luncheon on June 19, at the Union League Club of Chicago.

Recipients of the Abner J. Mikva Award are recognized for their extraordinary contributions to the Chicago legal community and their efforts to uphold the United States Constitution and defend social justice.

Founded in 2001, the ACS is one of the nation’s leading progressive legal organizations. The organization’s mission is to promote the vitality of the United States Constitution and the fundamental values it expresses; individual rights and liberties, genuine equality, access to justice, democracy, and the rule of law. 

“Abner Mikva was the ultimate example of law as a calling; he dedicated his life to public service and to exemplifying a truly just life. To be mentioned in the same breath as his name is such an honor,” Lyon said.

Lyon was named Dean in 2014 and is the twelfth and first female Dean of Valparaiso University Law School. Prior to becoming Dean, she first worked for the Cook County Public Defender’s Office in the felony trial division, post-conviction/habeas corpus unit, preliminary hearing/first municipal unit and the appeals division. Her last position there was the Chief of the Homicide Task Force, a 22-lawyer unit that represents persons accused of homicide. Lyon has tried more than 130 homicide cases, both within the Public Defender’s Office and elsewhere. She has defended more than 30 potential capital cases at the trial level. Of these, she has taken 19 through the penalty phases and won all 19. In 1990, she founded the Illinois Capital Resource Center and served as its director until joining the University of Michigan Law School faculty in 1995 as an Assistant Clinical Professor. In 2000, she joined the faculty at DePaul, where she also served as Associate Dean for Clinical Programs from 2006 to 2014.

In addition to her role as Dean of Valparaiso University Law School, Lyon also teaches the Law School’s Appellate Representation live-client clinic.