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Judge Edwards received a B.S. degree from Cornell University in 1962 and a J.D. degree from the University of Michigan Law School in 1965. He graduated from law school with distinction and was a member of the Michigan Law Review and the Order of the Coif. He was appointed to the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit by President Carter in 1980. He served as Chief Judge from September 15, 1994 until July 16, 2001, and he took Senior status on November 3, 2005. Before joining the bench, Judge Edwards was a tenured Professor of Law at the University of Michigan Law School (1970-75 and 1977-80) and at Harvard Law School (1975-77). He was also a member of the faculty at the Institute for Educational Management at Harvard University (1976-82). He practiced law in Chicago with Seyfarth, Shaw, Fairweather & Geraldson from 1965 to 1970.

He is currently a Professor of Law at the NYU School of Law, where he has taught since 1990. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences; the Committee on Science, Technology, and Law at the National Academy of Sciences; the American Law Institute; the Board of Directors, Institute for Judicial Administration, NYU School of Law; and a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation. He has served as Co-Chair of the Committee on Identifying the Needs of the Forensic Science Community, National Academy of Sciences. See The National Academy of Sciences Report on Forensic Sciences: What it Means for the Bench and Bar, 51 Jurimetrics (2010). He has also served as Chairman of the Board of Directors of Amtrak; the Executive Committee of the Order of the Coif; a member of the Executive Committee of the Association of American Law Schools; and a member and Vice President of the National Academy of Arbitrators.

Judge Edwards is the co-author of five books, the most recent of which is Federal Standards of Review (3d ed. 2018)(with Linda A. Elliott), which has received outstanding reviews. He has also published scores of articles. His article on The Growing Disjunction Between Legal Education and the Legal Profession, 91 Mich. L. Rev. 401 (1992), has been recognized as “one of the most-cited law review articles of all time.” Shapiro & Pearse, The Most-Cited Law Review Articles of All Time, 110 Mich. L. Rev. 1483, 1492, 1493, 1501 (2012). Two of his articles, The Effects of Collegiality on Judicial Decision Making, 151 U. Pa. L. Rev. 1639 (2003) and Pitfalls of Empirical Studies That Attempt To Understand the Factors Affecting Appellate Decisionmaking, 58 Duke L. J. 1895 (2009) (with Michael Livermore), explain how appellate judges decide cases and refute the claims that the personal ideologies and political leanings of the judges on the D.C. Circuit are crucial determinants in the court's decision-making process. In 2004, in commemoration of the fiftieth anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education, Judge Edwards authored The Journey from Brown v. Board of Education to Grutter v. Bollinger: From Racial Assimilation to Diversity, 102 Mich. L. Rev. 944 (2004), in which he drew on his own personal and professional experiences to reflect on racial equality and inequality in America and ponder the consequences of the shift from racial assimilation to diversity as a means of achieving racial equality.

In 2014, Judge Edwards published an essay, Another Look at Professor Rodell’s Goodbye to Law Reviews, 100 Va. L. Rev. 1483 (2014), updating the views that he first expressed in his Growing Disjunction article. In 2015, Judge Edwards offered Some Reflections on My Fifty Years in the Legal Profession, delivered on the occasion of the William & Mary Law School Marshall-Wythe Medallion Award Dinner. In 2016, the Judge participated in a question-and-answer interview with Professor Ronald K.L. Collins to discuss his views on legal scholarship and legal education, which is captured in On Legal Scholarship: Questions for Judge Harry T. Edwards, 65 J. Legal Educ. 637 (2016). The interview is prefaced with a short biographical profile of the Judge and closes with a bibliography of all his published works. The interview contains the Judge’s responses to some of those who have commented on his writings on legal scholarship. On March 25, 2017, Judge Edwards presented his Reflections on Racial Stigmas and Stereotyping at the Second African American Alumni Reunion at the University of Michigan Law School. It is an issue that has concerned him for years, so he was grateful to have an opportunity to offer his reflections. The attached paper includes endnotes which contain supporting citations.