She has defended more than 30 potential capital cases at the trial level and has taken 19 through penalty phase; she won all 19. In 1990, she founded the Illinois Capital Resource Center and served as its director until joining the University of Michigan Law School faculty as an assistant clinical professor in 1995.
A winner of the prestigious National Legal Aid and Defender Association's Reginald Heber Smith Award for best advocate for the poor in the country, she is a nationally recognized expert in the field of death penalty defense and a frequent continuing legal education teacher throughout the country. In January of 2015, she was awarded Operation Push’s Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and President Lyndon B. Johnson Dream-Makers Award.
Andrea Lyon was appointed as Dean of Valparaiso University Law School in July of 2014, a leader in curriculum reform and embracing diversity.
Formerly, she was a clinical professor of law, associate dean of Clinical Programs, and director of the Center for Justice in Capital Cases at DePaul college of Law. Lyon received her undergraduate degree from Rutgers University and her law degree from Antioch School of Law.
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