Donald W. Lemons is Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Virginia. A distinguished jurist and legal educator, Justice Lemons has served as a judge or justice at every level of the judiciary in Virginia and has taught at the law schools at the University of Virginia and the University of Richmond. He is a national leader in numerous legal and civic organizations, including the American Inns of Court, an organization that brings together legal practitioners of all levels to improve the skills, professionalism and ethics of the bar and bench.
Justice Lemons graduated from the University of Virginia School of Law in 1976 and served as an assistant dean and assistant professor of law at the School for several years. After a successful career in private practice, Lemons was appointed in 1995 to the Circuit Court for the City of Richmond by Gov. George Allen. In 1998 Lemons was elected by the Virginia General Assembly to the Court of Appeals of Virginia and then to the Supreme Court of Virginia in 2000. During the past eight years, he has also served as the John Marshall Professor of Judicial Studies at the University of Richmond law school.
B.A. 1970, J.D. 1976, University of Virginia; admitted to practice in Virginia; Assistant Dean and Assistant Professor of Law, University of Virginia School of Law, 1976-78; private practice of law, 1978-95; Judge, Circuit Court of the City of Richmond, 1995-98; A. L. Philpott Distinguished Adjunct Professor of Law, University of Richmond School of Law, 1998-2000; Judge, Court of Appeals of Virginia, 1998-2000; Justice, Supreme Court of Virginia, 2000–; Visiting Professor of Law, Washington and Lee University, fall 2008.