Retired Kentucky Supreme Court Justice to teach legal studies course at Murray State University

Retired Kentucky Supreme Court Justice to teach legal studies course at Murray State University
Judge Bill Cunningham

MURRAY, Ky. (KFVS) - A retired Kentucky Supreme Court Justice will return to his alma mater to teach legal studies and criminal law in the fall of 2019.

Justice Bill Cunningham join the court in 2007 and served on Kentucky’s Supreme Court for 12 years until retiring January of 2019. Cunningham is a 1962 graduate of Murray State University and earned his Juris Doctorate from the University of Kentucky in 1969.

Cunningham’s course, LST 480 “Topical Seminar in Legal Studies/Criminal Law in Real Time,” is designed to take students on a realistic journey through the criminal process, teaching them about how the law system has been in place for the last 40 years. The former justice will offer real-world experiential learning opportunities through high-impact seminars and field experiences

The class will be taught at Faculty Hall, located on the main campus of Murray State on Tuesday and Thursday from 12:30 p.m. until 1:45 p.m. The fall semester begins on August 20. Currently-enrolled students can register for the course through their myGate account and prospective students interested in the course can enroll at Murray State University here.

Cunningham also served as a circuit court judge for 15 years and trial commissioner before that. Cunningham is a veteran as well, Serving in the U.S. Army on assignments in Vietnam, Korea and Germany before starting his legal career.

“Few things have been as exciting as watching my alma mater, Murray State, rise to national prominence as one of the leading Universities in the country,” Cunningham said. “I’m humbled by the opportunity to give something back to a school which gave me my start. I’m excited about the opportunity given to me by Murray State to attempt to inspire young students to pursue a career in criminal justice, one of the highest of all professional callings.”

Murray State University president Dr. Bob Jackson said the university is fortunate and excite to has Cunningham teaching this course.

“His work around the Commonwealth is renowned, not just in the areas of government and law, but also with his lauded career as a noted author of regional history," said Dr. Jackson. "I firmly believe our students will value the practical experiences shared with them by Justice Cunningham and the legal knowledge they will acquire in this course.”

“Our College of Humanities and Fine Arts is so fortunate to have Justice Cunningham in the classroom with our students,” said David Balthrop, dean of the College of Humanities and Fine Arts. “His incredible years of law service, his long-standing career as a premier judge and supreme court justice in our commonwealth and his history with Murray State University makes this a very special opportunity for our students. We hope this is a long-term opportunity for our students.”

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