U.S. Appellate Court judge to deliver Riley Lecture on Professionalism

The Honorable Judge Charles R. Wilson
Charles R. Wilson

The Northern Illinois University College of Law will host its 22nd annual Francis X. Riley Lecture on Professionalism at 3 p.m. Friday, March 27, in the Francis X. Riley Courtroom.

The Honorable Charles R. Wilson of the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit in Tampa, Fla., will present, “That Justice Shall Be Done – Constitutional Requirements, Ethical Rules, and the Professional Ideals of Federal Prosecution.”

Revisiting “The Federal Prosecutor,” the famous speech by then-Attorney General and later-Supreme Court Justice Robert H. Jackson, Judge Wilson’s lecture will examine the broad topic of professional responsibility through the narrow lens of prosecutorial discretion.

He will discuss how Jackson’s thoughts on the qualities of a good prosecutor are as relevant now as they were in 1940, when Jackson delivered his speech to an assembled group of U.S. attorneys. He will also show that beyond the constitutional and ethical obligations involved in representing the United States in court, a federal prosecutor must continually aspire to the “professional ideal” envisioned by Jackson and oft alluded to by the Supreme Court.

Judge Wilson was appointed to the U.S. Court of Appeals by President Bill Clinton in 1999.

After law school, he served a clerkship with Judge Joseph W. Hatchett of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. He is a former assistant county attorney for Hillsborough County, Fla., and practiced law for five years in Tampa. He has also served as a county judge in Florida, as a U.S. magistrate judge in the Middle District of Florida and as U.S. attorney for the Middle District of Florida.

The Francis X. Riley Lecture on Professionalism was established in 1994 to honor the late Professor Emeritus Riley, who devoted his life to the law and legal education. The lecture series brings distinguished speakers to the NIU College of Law to discuss current ethical issues relating to the legal profession.

RSVPs are available online. For more information, call (815) 753-9655 or email mmitchell@niu.edu.

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