Michael Dreeben: From Deputy Solicitor General to Distinguished Lecturer

Michael Dreeben, a distinguished lecturer from government, has had an illustrious career in public service, spanning over three decades. His expertise in criminal law and procedure, coupled with his extensive experience arguing cases before the U.S. Supreme Court and federal courts of appeals, has made him a highly respected figure in the legal community.

Michael Dreeben

Tenure in the Office of Solicitor General

From 1988 to 2019, Dreeben served in the Office of Solicitor General in the U.S. Department of Justice. He began his career as an Assistant to the Solicitor General and later became a Deputy Solicitor General in 1994. In this role, he supervised the criminal docket for the United States in the U.S. Supreme Court.

During his tenure, Dreeben argued an impressive 105 Supreme Court cases on behalf of the United States and briefed hundreds of other cases in the Supreme Court and lower federal courts. He also argued cases in every regional federal court of appeals, including en banc cases in ten circuits.

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Landmark Cases in Criminal Law and Procedure

Dreeben’s career in the Solicitor General’s office is marked by his involvement in numerous landmark cases in criminal law and procedure. Some of the notable areas he addressed include:

  • Hate crimes and the First Amendment
  • Fourth Amendment rights in the internet age
  • Public corruption and private fraud
  • The Sixth Amendment’s Confrontation Clause

His expertise and contributions to these critical areas of law have had a significant impact on the legal landscape of the United States.

Role in the Special Counsel Investigation

In June 2017, Dreeben was detailed to the Office of Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller III, where he served as a counselor to the special counsel in the investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election and obstruction of justice. In this capacity, he successfully represented the special counsel’s office in federal court against legal challenges to its authority.

Dreeben’s involvement in this high-profile investigation further underscores his expertise and reputation as a highly skilled legal professional.

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Education and Academic Appointments

DegreeInstitutionRoleBachelor'sUniversity of Wisconsin-MadisonStudentMaster's in HistoryUniversity of ChicagoStudentLaw DegreeDuke UniversityArticles Editor, Duke Law Journal

Table 1: Michael Dreeben’s educational background

Dreeben’s educational background is equally impressive. He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, a master’s degree in history from the University of Chicago, and his law degree from Duke University, where he served as an articles editor on the Duke Law Journal.

Following his graduation from law school, Dreeben served as a law clerk to the honorable Jerre S. Williams of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. He has also held academic appointments as an adjunct professor at Georgetown Law and a visiting professor at Duke Law School, where he taught appellate advocacy and a seminar on constitutional litigation in the Supreme Court.

A Distinguished Career in Public Service

Michael Dreeben’s career is a testament to his unwavering commitment to public service and his exceptional legal skills. His extensive experience in arguing cases before the highest courts of the nation, coupled with his deep understanding of criminal law and procedure, has made him a highly sought-after legal expert.

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As a distinguished lecturer from government, Dreeben continues to share his knowledge and expertise with the next generation of legal professionals. His contributions to the field of law have left an indelible mark on the American legal system, and his legacy will undoubtedly inspire future generations of lawyers and public servants.

In conclusion, Michael Dreeben’s remarkable career, spanning from his role as Deputy Solicitor General to his involvement in the Special Counsel investigation and his academic appointments, showcases his dedication to upholding the rule of law and his unwavering commitment to public service. His expertise and contributions to the field of criminal law and procedure have solidified his position as one of the most respected legal minds of our time.


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