Lisa Lorish

  • Lecturer

Lisa Lorish was appointed a judge on the Virginia Court of Appeals in August 2021. She formerly served as an assistant federal public defender and the appellate specialist for the Western District of Virginia, representing indigent clients charged with federal crimes that range from petty offenses to capital murder. Lorish has experience representing indigent defendants at the trial level and has also argued numerous appeals before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.

Lorish graduated cum laude from Princeton University in 2003 and from the University of Virginia School of Law in 2008, where she was an Order of the Coif member, the essays development editor for the Virginia Law Review, a John M. Olin Scholar in Law and Economics and a 2008 recipient of the Raven Award.   

After graduating in 2008, Lorish practiced commercial litigation with Sullivan and Cromwell in London. She then joined the Charlottesville office of McGuireWoods as a litigation associate in 2011, and was named a 2013 Virginia Super Lawyers Rising Star. 

Lorish was a member of the board of directors of the Fountain Fund, a nonprofit that provides low-interest loans to formerly incarcerated individuals. She is the past-president of the Charlottesville Albemarle Bar Association and currently chairs the pro bono committee.  

Lorish created the Federal Criminal Sentence Reduction Clinic, and has also served as a lecturer for the Criminal Justice Reform Seminar.


  • J.D.
    University of Virginia School of Law
  • B.A.
    Princeton University

Current Courses

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