Assistant Professor of Law
Before coming to St. Thomas, Julie Jonas was an adjunct professor and the legal director of the Great North Innocence Project at the University of Minnesota Law School. She will teach courses related to criminal law and procedure.
You were previously an adjunct professor at St. Thomas Law. What interested you about joining the full-time faculty?
I always appreciated the social justice mission that was so deeply embedded in the pedagogy of the school. That mission was embodied in the students and our classroom discussions were always engaging, with students holding a variety of viewpoints, but always listening to each other in a respectful manner.
What will be the focus of your scholarship?
Initially my research will focus on whether and how juries may be responsible for wrongful convictions. As a trial attorney, I always wanted to know what was being discussed in the jury room. As an innocence attorney, I often wondered how and why the jury failed my client. As an academic, I look forward to answering those questions.
Do you have a favorite quote?
“Always do the right thing even when the right thing is the hard thing.” – Bryan Stevenson, founder and executive director of the Equal Justice Initiative
Besides your work, what’s something that you’re passionate about?
I am extremely excited for all things post-pandemic. I look forward to meeting new people and seeing their smiles, spending more time with family and friends, exercising with people without masks, going to live theater and movies, and lots of travel.
This story is featured in the summer 2022 issue of St. Thomas Lawyer.