Visiting Professor of Law
BA, Washington State University; JD with Honors, University of Washington School of Law
Professor Michael Johnson has been a Visiting Professor at the UALR William H. Bowen School of Law since August 2011. He teaches – and has taught – Evidence, White Collar Crime, Criminal Law, Trial Skills II, and Advanced Trial Advocacy. He also coaches the Trial Competition Team.
Prior to coming to Bowen, Professor Johnson was Counsel for National Programs for the National Center for Justice and the Rule of Law and Professor of Law at the University of Mississippi.
Professor Johnson was an attorney with the United States Department of Justice from 1973 to 2010. He served as the United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Arkansas, and as the First Assistant/Criminal Chief for the same office. From 1973-1984, he was with the Civil Rights Division during which he handled complex voting rights cases, and criminal matters concerning racially motivated violence, and criminal police misconduct. In 1984, Professor Johnson was the 34th person in the history of the United States Justice Department named as Senior Litigation Counsel, a meritorious designation reflecting his advocacy skills in complex litigation. He has extensive experience in the investigation and prosecution of complex criminal matters including public corruption, white collar crime, fraud, racketeering, tax fraud, and civil rights.
Professor Johnson has taught extensively. He has been an Adjunct Professor of Law at the William H. Bowen School of Law since 1985 teaching Evidence, Criminal Law, Trial Advocacy and Advanced Trial Advocacy. Since 1980, he served as an Instructor for the United States Department of Justice Advocacy Institute, and, since 1987, has been an Instructor, Assistant Team Leader, Team Leader, and Program Director for the National Institute of Trial Advocacy (NITA). In 2010 Professor Johnson served as the Program Director for the NITA’s National Session in Louisville, Colorado.
Professor Johnson brings international experience to teaching. He has taught advocacy courses for NITA in both Scotland and Ireland. In 2005 and 2006, Professor Johnson led teams sponsored by the United States Department of Justice and State Department to the Republic of Nigeria to conduct a seminar on Public Corruption Investigation and Prosecution and a seminar on Plea Bargaining for judges, prosecutors, defense counsel, and academics.
From August 2003 through October 2004, Professor Johnson lived and worked in South Africa on assignment as a legal advisor to the Republic of South Africa. His responsibility was to oversee the development of organized crime and racketeering prosecutions for the Republic of South Africa. Professor Johnson has returned to South Africa numerous times since 2004 to continue his work with the South African government, including conducting Judicial Colloquia for trial court and appellate court judges on the principles of racketeering and money laundering.
Professor Johnson graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Washington State University and received his JD with Honors from the University of Washington in Seattle, Washington.