Libby Baird ’19 To Clerk for U.S. Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett
Libby (Stropko) Baird, a 2019 graduate of the University of Virginia School of Law, will clerk for Justice Amy Coney Barrett at the U.S. Supreme Court for the 2021 term.
Baird said clerking at the Supreme Court will be an opportunity to learn from one of her biggest role models.
“It’s a dream come true to be able to serve as one of Justice Barrett’s law clerks. I’ve long admired her academic work and her approach to the law as a jurist,” she said. “Clerking at the Supreme Court will be an incredible learning experience, and I’m excited to continue serving in our justice system.”
The Law School is fourth after Yale, Harvard, and Stanford in placing clerks on the U.S. Supreme Court since 2005.
Baird clerked for Judge Kevin C. Newsom of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit and is currently clerking for Judge Trevor N. McFadden ’06 of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.
“I feel so fortunate to have clerked for Judge Newsom and to be clerking for Judge McFadden now,” she said. “Both are brilliant judges, gifted writers, extraordinary mentors and kind people. I’ve learned so much from them, and I think that both clerkships have enabled me to improve my writing and analytical skills.”
At UVA Law, she served as an articles editor for the Virginia Law Review, was elected to the Order of the Coif, won the Norton Rose Fulbright Best Memorandum Award, participated in the Supreme Court Litigation Clinic and was a research assistant for Professor A. E. Dick Howard ’61. Along with Howard, Baird credits Vice Dean Leslie Kendrick ’06; Professors Aditya Bamzai, Molly Brady, Julia Mahoney, Caleb Nelson, Daniel Ortiz, Micah Schwartzman ’05 and John Setear; and clinic instructors Matthew Madden ’07 and Mark Stancil ’99 for contributing to her success.
“There are many others that I’d like to thank — every professor I had at UVA was instrumental in my formation as a lawyer,” Baird said.
“The law school fosters a lifelong community that supports students in whatever they do,” she added. “My professors and classmates have encouraged me in striving to be the best lawyer and person that I can.”
Howard said that Baird excelled in helping him research state constitutional law in preparation for a lecture connected to his distinguished chair appointment. As a student in his Supreme Court Justices and the Art of Judging class, Howard said Baird authored an exemplary report on Justice Sandra Day O’Connor.
“Libby has it all — a good mind, superb work habits, a love of ideas, a consummate ability to do productive research, a talent for writing, a keen sense of social responsibility and a winning personality,” he said. “As Justice Barrett settles into her new job, she could have no better companion than Libby Baird.”
McFadden, who joined the bench in 2017, praised his clerk.
“Libby epitomizes what UVA lawyers are known for: She is smart, hard-working and kind,” he said. “She’ll be a terrific addition to Justice Barrett’s chambers.”
Baird earned a B.S. in business administration/finance from the University of Arizona.
A record 104 UVA Law alumni are clerking in courts across the nation during the 2020 term, including Maria Monaghan ’17 and Daniel Richardson ’18, who are clerking for Justices Samuel Alito and Stephen Breyer, respectively.
Founded in 1819, the University of Virginia School of Law is the second-oldest continuously operating law school in the nation. Consistently ranked among the top law schools, Virginia is a world-renowned training ground for distinguished lawyers and public servants, instilling in them a commitment to leadership, integrity and community service.