Andrew Birrell (Minneapolis, MN)

Andrew Birrell (Minneapolis, MN) Photo
Andy Birrell is a candidate for Second Vice President in NACDL's 2022 election, nominated by the Nominating Committee.

I am a candidate for the position of Second Vice President.  I have enjoyed being Secretary and am very proud of the work I have done in that capacity. I am especially proud of the service I was able to render NACDL as a member of the first and as chair of the second Executive Director search committees.

Since attending the NACDL trial college in 1984, NACDL has been an important part of my life. It has been my privilege to serve as a member of the Budget Committee, the Investment Committee, the Nominating Committee, the Audit Committee, and the Executive Committee. I have chaired some of those committees.   Over the years, I have given freely of my time and money to support NACDL. I have been a Life Member of NACDL for many years. 

At the Ft. Lauderdale meeting, I was first elected to the Board to serve an unexpired term. I vividly recall being sworn in by Lisa Wayne. I continued to serve as a Board member and began as Treasurer in August 2018; a position I held for three years. While on the Board, I attended all Board meetings except one or two when I received an excused absence. After becoming Treasurer, I attended all Board meetings as well as many other meetings of the Budget, Audit, Executive and other committees. I have worked hard to recruit new members. 

Recently, I was also privileged to begin serving as Secretary of the NFCJ Board of Trustees.

I am a member of the strike force and have devoted a substantial amount of my time, and the time of other lawyers in my firm, to representing attorneys in need of help. 

I am active and in good standing in the Bar of Minnesota.  I am the immediate past President of the Minnesota Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers after having been a Board member and having held all the other officer positions.  For 12 years I was the Chair of the Minnesota State Bar Association Criminal Law Specialist Certification Committee. The Minnesota Supreme Court appointed me to serve on its advisory committee for the Rules of Criminal Procedure. The United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit has twice selected me to be on a three-person committee tasked with advising the Court on the Appointment of the Federal Defender for the District of Minnesota. I frequently speak at CLEs, usually on the topics of legal ethics and criminal law and procedure. 

My practice is limited to criminal defense in the federal and state courts. In addition to my private clients, I accept CJA appointments, and for many years have been a mentor in our federal court’s mentor program. That is a training program which pairs less experienced attorneys with experienced lawyers in CJA cases.  

Thank you for your consideration. 

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