Kimberly J. Norwood, Professor, Washington University School of Law
Kimberly Norwood has taught at Washington University School of Law for more than 20 years and in that time has mentored hundreds of law students.
By listening to problems, helping someone obtain a job, doing mock interviews, and reviewing writing samples and resumes, she has made herself available for her students outside of the classroom.
Moreover, she is more than just a mentor: She’s a mentor facilitator. For decades, she ran a mentor program that paired young black and Latino students with lawyers and judges, helping them to form lasting professional relationships. She also planned two networking receptions each year where all participants in the mentor program would meet one another. And because good company and good food usually go together, her annual potlucks for current and former students have become justly famous.
She also teaches a pipeline course in local high schools where she pairs judges, lawyers, law students and high school students for learning and mentoring experiences.
What is your greatest accomplishment to date?
Professionally: Twofold—receiving tenure and publishing a book.
Who is your legal hero?
Attorney Frankie Muse Freeman
Who is your all-time favorite U.S. Supreme Court justice?
Justice Thurgood Marshall
What’s been your favorite moment as an attorney so far?
Every time I get to help law students pursue their dreams or understand the law, it’s been a good day.
If you hadn’t become a lawyer, what profession would you have chosen?
Teacher first, psychologist second.
What simple piece of advice do you have for young lawyers?
Be true to yourself and your beliefs. Work hard. Find empathy in your heart when dealing with all people.