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Chief Judge Mary Ellen Barbera '84 Joins Law School's Board of Visitors

Alumna and First Woman to Lead Maryland's Highest Court Brings Judicial and Administrative Experience to School's Advisory Body

The University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law is honored to announce the appointment of The Honorable Mary Ellen Barbera, ’84 to its Board of Visitors, a 37-member group of distinguished alumni and friends charged with advising the dean and Maryland officials on matters affecting the law school. Barbera

“It is an extraordinary privilege to have a lawyer with Judge Barbera’s knowledge, integrity and record of public service on our board,” said Dean Phoebe A. Haddon.  “Her appointment adds important judicial and educational depth to an already highly accomplished group.”

Judge Barbera (shown left in the photo with Carey Law Dean Phoebe Haddon) is the first woman to serve as chief judge of the Maryland Court of Appeals.  Appointed to her position in July, 2013 by Governor Martin O’Malley, she succeeds The Honorable Robert M. Bell, who retired from the bench.  He also serves on the law school’s Board of Visitors.

“I know I speak for all of our Board members when I say we couldn’t be more honored to have a public official of Judge Barbera’s talent and stature join the board,” said Christine A. Edwards ’83, chair of the Board of Visitors.

Judge Barbera has been a public servant and a leader throughout her career.  In the early 1980s, she taught elementary school for the Baltimore City Public School System while attending the School of Law at night.  From 1985 to 1998, she worked for the Criminal Appeals Division of the Office of the Attorney General, the last eight years of which she served as deputy chief of the division.  During her tenure at that office, she represented the State of Maryland in more than 450 criminal appeals.  From 1998 to 2002, she served as legal counsel to Governor Parris N. Glendening.  Barbera was an associate judge on the Court of Special Appeals before her appointment to the Maryland Court of Appeals in 2008.  She has also served as an adjunct professor at the University of Baltimore School of Law and American University’s Washington College of Law.

The Board of Visitors advises the dean of Maryland Carey Law on a wide range of issues, including proposals for new academic programs and the hiring of senior administrators.  It also seeks to advise the Maryland General Assembly, the University’s President and Board of Regents, and the University of Maryland Chancellor on matters affecting the law school.