Professor of Lawyering Skills
Director, Global Lawyering Skills Program
Co-Director of the Center for Advocacy and Dispute Resolution
B.A., Oberlin College
J.D., Case Western Reserve University
"Nothing makes me happier than when I hear from a student or recent graduate who has found her or his niche in the legal community and is out using the skills they learned in my classes to solve legal problems. I love that as a professor I get to have a role in supporting people at a critical juncture in their professional, and often personal, journey to a satisfying career." — Professor Mary-Beth Moylan
Professor Mary-Beth Moylan is the Director of Global Lawyering Skills ("GLS"), the nationally recognized, required two-year skills program that introduces students to a broad range of core lawyering skills that include, legal research, writing, and oral advocacy, as well as client interviewing, client counseling, negotiation, and drafting. Professor Moylan is also the co-author of Global Lawyering Skills (West 2013), a legal skills textbook that is unique in the market for its focus on cross-border and cross-cultural considerations in lawyering skills and practice. In addition to her responsibilities directing, writing, and teaching in the GLS program, Professor is also the co-director of the Advocacy and Dispute Resolution Center. In this capacity, she has the chance to bring advocacy programming to McGeorge, including the annual Lou Ashe Distinguished Lecture Series, and support our outstanding advocacy competition teams for mock trial and moot court. Professor Moylan frequently serves as a coach to at least one moot court team.
Professor Moylan has a long-standing passion for and expertise in politics and government. Since 2003, she has supervised the publication of the California Initiative Review, an online journal providing objective and neutral analysis of each statewide ballot proposition. The California Initiative Review is published in advance of every California statewide general election. Professor Moylan and her students also hold a public forum for explanation and discussion of the statewide ballot propositions, and Professor Moylan regularly provides a summary of the propositions to Capital Public Radio's Insight program in advance of each general election. Her expertise in politics and government is not limited to the initiative process, and Professor Moylan is often looked to by local news media for expert advice on state constitutional issues, conflicts of interest, and other election related topics.
Professor Moylan is also an expert in legal skills education. She was President of the highly respected and influential Association of Legal Writing Directors (ALWD) in 2014-2015, and she regularly presents at conferences. Most recently, she presented on a mediation panel at the Global Legal Skills Conference in Verona, Italy, and the Legal Writing Institute Conference in Portland, Oregon. During her tenure as GLS director, McGeorge has hosted the ALWD Conference (2011) and the Western Regional Legal Writing Conference (2016). She continues to serve on ALWD's ABA Task Force, and its Leadership Committee.
Although Professor Moylan was raised in New England, and attended college and law school in the Midwest, she launched her legal career in Sacramento as a law clerk for the Honorable Lawrence K. Karlton of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of California. She then practiced election law with Olson, Hagel, & Fishburn, and general civil litigation with Downey Brand LLP, both highly regarded Sacramento-based law firms. She maintains her connections to the Sacramento legal community and keeps abreast on changes to legal practice through her involvement with the Anthony M. Kennedy American Inn of Court. Professor Moylan is a member of the executive committee of the Kennedy Inn, and she ensures that student members of the Inn are active participants in this organization. The Kennedy Inn brings together judges, lawyers, and law students to promote ethics, civility, and professionalism in the practice of law.
Courses: Global Lawyering Skills, Civil Procedure, California Initiative Seminar