The Honorable D. Michael Fisher

Distinguished Jurist Fellow, United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit

Judge Fisher was nominated by President George W. Bush and confirmed unanimously by the U.S. Senate in December 2003. Prior to becoming a judge, he served as Attorney General of Pennsylvania having been elected in 1996 and re-elected in 2000. Judge Fisher argued major cases in state and federal appellate courts and in March 1998, he successfully argued before the United States Supreme Court a precedent-setting case ensuring that paroled criminals meet the conditions of their release. Before his election as Attorney General, Judge Fisher was in the Pennsylvania General Assembly, serving six years in the State House and 16 years in the State Senate. He began his legal career as an Assistant DA in Pittsburgh following his graduation from Georgetown University and its Law Center where he was honored in 2023 as the recipient of The William Gaston Award for service and leadership. He continued to practice law during his career in the General Assembly and was a shareholder or partner in various firms, including Houston Harbaugh. Judge Fisher chairs the Committee on Federal-State Jurisdiction of the U.S. Judicial Conference and the PA Bar Association’s Federal Practice Committee. In 2017 Judge Fisher assumed Senior Status on the 3rd Circuit and was named as the Initial Distinguished Jurist in Residence at Pitt Law where he continues to teach Federal Appellate Advocacy and Federal Habeas Corpus.

    Education & Training

  • JD, Georgetown University
  • BA, Georgetown University