Bruce Adelson

Adjunct Professor of Law

Bruce Adelson is in private practice in Maryland. He is the author of the award-winning Brushing Back Jim Crow – The Integration of Minor League Baseball in the American South (University of Virginia Press). He is the author of 14 books. Most recently, he authored a chapter about voting accessibility in The Future of Election Administration (Palgrave Macmilllan, 2019)

He is a former U.S Department of Justice Senior Trial Attorney.  Bruce is a faculty member in the Department of Family Medicine at Georgetown University School of Medicine where he teaches organizational culture, implicit bias, civil rights and cultural awareness. He has also taught at Harvard University, Cornell University, Auburn University, The Johns Hopkins University School of Public Health, and University of Baltimore School of Law.

In his career, Mr. Adelson has successfully litigated in at trial and on appeal in federal and state courts. Among his litigations are:

  • McCutcheon v. Archdiocese of Washington, et al., (Montgomery County Circuit Court and Maryland Court of Special Appeals, 1988) – As lead appellate counsel, represented plaintiffs in suit where court established Maryland tort of clergy malpractice in a case of national first impression concerning child sexual abuse by Roman Catholic clergy;
  • Christian v. Silver Maples Village, Ltd., et al., (E.D. Mich., 1986) – As lead counsel, represented plaintiff in case where court found arbitrary state action in operation of subsidized public housing complex and the complex’s eviction procedures, holding that the complex’s attempt to evict plaintiff for riding his motorcycle violated the U.S. Constitution’s 14th Amendment;
  • Harris v. Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission,  Case No 14-232, U.S. Supreme Court, 2016).  Bruce Adelson was the Voting Rights Act expert for the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission.  He was the consulting expert in litigation challenging the Commission’s legislative redistricting plan.  A three-judge federal court dismissed plaintiffs’ challenge to the plan (Harris v. Ariz. Indep. Redistricting Comm'n, 993 F.Supp.2d 1042 (D. Ariz., 2014).  Mr. Adelson testified by deposition in that case.  In April 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously upheld the plan’s legality;
  • Alissa Juech v. Children's Hospital of Wisconsin, 353 F.Supp.3d 773 (E.D. Wis. 2018), Children’s Hospital’s counsel retained Bruce Adelson as the testifying ADA expert.  A deaf patient and her husband sued Children’s Hospital alleging ADA disability discrimination by the hospital and staff. The Court granted Children’s Hospital’s motion for summary judgment and dismissed the case, finding that ADA violations did not prove intent to discriminate; and
  • State v. Linda Jane Minyard and State v. Michael Edwin Minyard, Maricopa County Superior Court CR 2016-002415-001and CR 2016-002416-001. The State of Arizona prosecuted the Minyards for felony voter fraud and voting in elections in two states. Bruce Adelson was the testifying voting and elections law and Department of Justice expert for the Minyards. The case settled before trial. Defendants pleaded no contest to the lowest relevant misdemeanors with no felony pleas or convictions.

Mr. Adelson has been the featured and keynote speaker for many organizations including The National Baseball Hall of Fame, Birmingham Civil Rights Museum, National Archives, City of Flint’s Dave Hoskins Day, City & County of Honolulu, City of Pittsburgh, Idaho Supreme Court, and the University of Virginia’s Fall for the Book.

Bruce Adelson has been a commentator for National Public Radio and CBS Radio’s Game of the Week, and a sports, legal affairs, and political reporter, with his works appearing in: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution; The Washington Post; Court Manager Magazine; Bloomberg/BNA News; The Daily Record; Baseball America; Sport Magazine; and USA Today's Baseball Weekly.

Bruce Adelson holds a BA in International Studies from The Johns Hopkins University and a JD from The University of Pittsburgh School of Law.  He is licensed to practice law in the District of Columbia, Maryland, Michigan, and Virginia (inactive).  He is licensed to practice before the U.S. District Courts for the Eastern and Western Districts of Michigan, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, the U.S. Courts of Appeal for the Fourth and District of Columbia Circuits and the U.S. Supreme Court.

    Education & Training

  • JD, University of Pittsburgh School of Law
  • BA, Johns Hopkins University