Justice Gordon McCloud began her service on the Washington Supreme Court in January, 2013. She brought with her a wealth of appellate experience; she handled hundreds of cases before that Court and other appellate courts, including the Ninth Circuit and the U.S. Supreme Court.
Her expertise, especially in appeals, was recognized by her peers; they have awarded her the Washington Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers’ highest award, the William O. Douglas Award, for “extraordinary courage” in the practice of law. She is an invited member of the American Association of Appellate Lawyers and was a founding member of the Washington Appellate Lawyers Association, both of which limit membership to the most accomplished appellate lawyers.
In addition, she was an adjunct Professor at Seattle University School of Law, teaching classes on a variety of topics including appellate advocacy. She has also taught practicing lawyers and published articles on appellate advocacy, criminal defense, constitutional law, and post-conviction work.
She serves as vice-chair of the Washington State Gender & Justice Commission, as a member of the Supreme Court’s Rules Committee, and as the liaison to the Supreme Court’s Pattern Instructions Committee (on which she previously served as a lawyer-member). As a Justice, she speaks regularly at legal and community events throughout the state on topics ranging from ethics to indigent defense.
Justice Gordon McCloud graduated in the top two percent of her class from the University of Southern California Gould School of Law in 1984. She clerked for Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Warren Ferguson before beginning her practice. She has worked for a large law firm, for The Defender Association, and then in her own small firm since 1990.