Meet the Dean

Mark Martin is Dean and Professor at Regent University School of Law. Martin previously served as the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of North Carolina.

In 1999, at age 35, Martin was installed as the youngest Justice in the history of the Supreme Court of North Carolina. Martin served as an Associative Justice beginning in 1999 and was appointed as Chief Justice in 2014. Martin has also served on the North Carolina Court of Appeals and the North Carolina Superior Court.

Chief Justice Martin has held many national and state leadership roles. Most recently, Chief Justice John Roberts appointed Martin as a member of the Committee on Federal-State Jurisdiction of the Judicial Conference of the United States. He has also served as a member of the Board of Directors of the Conference of Chief Justices, and as Chair of the ABA Judicial Division and Appellate Judges Conference. Martin is a former chair of the Appellate Judges Education Institute Board of Directors.

Chief Justice Martin is deeply committed to advancing the rule of law and improving the administration of justice. In his home state, he convened the North Carolina Commission on the Administration of Law and Justice. That initiative resulted in a number of important reforms, including legislation that ended North Carolina’s practice of automatically prosecuting 16- and 17-year-old juvenile offenders as adults. Chief Justice Martin also sought to narrow the access-to-justice gap in North Carolina by creating a bar-funded Pro Bono Resource Center. He has also been involved in promoting the rule of law internationally, including serving on the Commission on the World Justice Project and participating in the World Justice Forum in Vienna, Austria and World Justice Forum III in Barcelona, Spain.

FULL BIOGRAPHY ↓

Full Bio

Mark Martin is Dean and Professor at Regent University School of Law. Martin previously served as the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of North Carolina.

In 1999, at age 35, Martin was installed as the youngest Justice in the history of the Supreme Court of North Carolina. Martin served as an Associative Justice beginning in 1999 and was appointed as Chief Justice in 2014. Martin has also served on the North Carolina Court of Appeals and the North Carolina Superior Court.

Chief Justice Martin has held many national and state leadership roles. Most recently, Chief Justice John Roberts appointed Martin as a member of the Committee on Federal-State Jurisdiction of the Judicial Conference of the United States.  He has also served as a member of the Board of Directors of the Conference of Chief Justices, and as Chair of the ABA Judicial Division and Appellate Judges Conference. Martin is a former chair of the Appellate Judges Education Institute Board of Directors.

Chief Justice Martin is deeply committed to advancing the rule of law and improving the administration of justice. In his home state, he convened the North Carolina Commission on the Administration of Law and Justice. That initiative resulted in a number of important reforms, including legislation that ended North Carolina’s practice of automatically prosecuting 16- and 17-year-old juvenile offenders as adults. Chief Justice Martin also sought to narrow the access-to-justice gap in North Carolina by creating a bar-funded Pro Bono Resource Center. He has also been involved in promoting the rule of law internationally, including serving on the Commission on the World Justice Project and participating in the World Justice Forum in Vienna, Austria and World Justice Forum III in Barcelona, Spain.

In recognition of his extensive service to the courts, Chief Justice Martin has been inducted into the Warren E. Burger Society of the National Center for State Courts. Martin is the recipient of the ABA 2019 Robert Yegge Award for Outstanding Contribution in the Field of Judicial Administration and the North Carolina Bar Association 2019 Liberty Bell Award.

Chief Justice Martin received his LL.M. in Judicial Process from the University of Virginia School of Law, his J.D. with honors from the University of North Carolina School of Law, and his undergraduate degree with highest honors from Western Carolina University.

Martin’s professional memberships include the American Inns of Court, American Law Institute, American Bar Association, Federalist Society, and the North Carolina State Bar. He is also an Associate Member of the Virginia State Bar.

He is married to Kym Lake Martin and is the proud father of five children.

Curriculum Vitae

  • Dean and Professor, Regent University School of Law
  • Chief Justice, Supreme Court of North Carolina
  • Associate Justice, Supreme Court of North Carolina
  • Associate Judge, North Carolina Court of Appeals
  • Resident Superior Court Judge
  • Legal Counsel to Governor James G. Martin
  • Private practice of law, McNair Law Firm
  • Law Clerk to U.S. District Judge Clyde H. Hamilton

Professional Outreach to Support the Bench and Bar, and Serve the Public Interest

  • Federal-State Jurisdiction Committee, Judicial Conference of the United States
  • Chair, Professionalism and Competence of the Bar Committee, and member, Board of Directors, Conference of Chief Justices
  • Chair, ABA Judicial Division and ABA Appellate Judges Conference
  • Chair, Board of Directors, Appellate Judges Education Institute
  • Commission on the World Justice Project (helped convene multidisciplinary rule of law state level meetings; World Justice Forum (Vienna, Law and Justice breakout, 2008); and World Justice Forum III (Barcelona, North America regional breakout, 2011)
  • Awards Committee, American Inns of Court, and member, James Kent Inn of Court, and former member, Craven-Everett and Susie Sharp Inns of Court
  • Board of Directors, Bolch Judicial Institute
  • Making Justice Accessible: Designing Legal Services for the 21st Century, Subcommittee on Technology and Innovation, American Academy of Arts and Sciences
  • Co-Chair, ABA Commission on Fair and Impartial Courts (culminating in national summit among thirty-eight participatory state justice systems)
  • Chair, John Marshall Award Selection Committee
  • Governor’s Crime Commission
  • Convener, NC Commission on the Administration of Law and Justice
  • Vice-Chair, NC Federal-State-Tribal Judicial Council
  • Host, 2016 Inter-Court Conference, Federal Judicial Center and National Center for State Courts
  • Chair, Commission on the Future of the NC Business Court
  • Chair, Chief Justice’s Commission of Professionalism
  • Region 15 Advisory Committee, American Law Institute
  • Vice President, North Carolina Bar Association
  • Co-Chair, Governor’s Task Force on Mental Health and Substance Use
  • Chair, North Carolina Equal Access to Justice Commission

Awards and Honors

  • Warren Burger Society, National Center for State Courts
  • Patriot Award, United States Secretary of Defense
  • Order of the Long Leaf Pine, State of North Carolina
  • Judicial Excellence Award, North Carolina Police Benevolent Association
  • President’s Award of Excellence, Wake County Bar Association
  • Leadership in the Law Award, Elon University School of Law
  • Distinguished Alumnus Award, Western Carolina University

Select Presentations and Publications

  • Panelist, “Judicial Leadership in Civil Justice Reform,” Southern Region Civil Justice Summit, Conference of Chief Justices, Little Rock, AR (May 2018)
  • Presenter, “Deference, Discretion, and Expertise in Administrative Law,” Federalist Society Las Vegas Lawyers Chapter, Las Vegas, NV (January 2018)
  • Keynote Address, Elon Law School Graduation Ceremony, Elon, NC (December 2017)
  • Co-Moderator, “Promoting Cooperation between State and Federal Courts,” Conference of Chief Justices, Philadelphia, PA (August 2017)
  • Panelist, “Best Practices to Identify and Rectify Wrongful Convictions,” Criminal Justice Reform Conference, Rappaport Center for Law and Public Policy, Boston College Law School, Newton, MA (February 2017)
  • Presenter, “Recusal Procedures: How Best to Ensure Transparency, Fairness, and Timeliness,” Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System, Colorado Springs, CO (November 2016)
  • Panelist, “The Emerging Regulation of Legal Services: Examining ABA Resolution 105,” 21st Annual Thomson Reuters Law Firm Leaders Forum, New York, NY (October 2016)
  • Moderator, “Brave New World: Balancing Civil Liberties and National Security in the Twenty-First Century,” 2016 Inter-Court Conference, Asheville, NC (September 2016)
  • Panelist, “A Respected Judiciary – Balancing Independence and Accountability,” 2016 Annual Florida Bar Convention, Orlando, FL (June 2016)
  • Course Faculty, “Judicial Ethics for Judges,” Duke Law School LL.M. Program, Durham, NC (June 2016; June 2015)
  • Keynote Address, Campbell Law School Graduation Ceremony, Raleigh, NC (May 2016)
  • Keynote Address, “Twentieth Century Assumptions in a Twenty-First Century World,” National Workshop for United States District Judges, Federal Judicial Center, Charleston, SC (April 2016)
  • Panelist, State Chief Justice Access to Justice Program, White House Forum on Access to Justice, Washington, DC (April 2016)
  • Keynote Address, “Magna Carta: Enduring Legacy 1215-2015,” Federalist Society Triangle Lawyers Chapter, North Carolina State Capitol, Raleigh, NC (January 2016)
  • “The Role of Judicial Leaders in the Administration of Justice,” in The Improvement of the Administration of Justice (8th ed. 2016)
  • Panelist, “Judges’ Roundtable Discussion on Improvement of Justice: A Comparative Approach,” Appellate Judges Education Institute Annual Summit, Washington, DC (November 2015)
  • Panelist, “Civility Matters,” TIPS Program, Chicago, IL (July 2015)
  • State of the Judiciary Address, Joint Session of the North Carolina General Assembly, Raleigh, NC (March 2015)
  • Keynote Address, Oklahoma State Judges Association Annual Meeting, Norman, OK (July 2013)
  • Panelist, “Inside the Judicial Sanctum: The Art and Science of Judicial Decision-Making,” Appellate Judges Education Institute Annual Summit, Washington, DC (November 2011)
  • Panelist, “Without Fear or Favor – The Expanding Threats to Judicial Independence,” Defense Research Institute, Washington, DC (October 2011)
  • Moderator, “18th Century Courts – 21st Century Expectations,” Kentucky Law Journal Symposium on Court Funding, Lexington, KY (September 2011)
  • Recent Experience with Intermediate Scrutiny Under the North Carolina Constitution: Blankenship v. Bartlett and King v. Beaufort County Board of Education, 59 U. Kan. L. Rev. 761 (2011)
  • “Justice is the Business of Government: The Crucial Role of State Courts,” THE JUDGES JOURNAL, Volume 49:1 (Winter 2010)

Education

  • University of Virginia School of Law – Charlottesville, VA

     LL.M. in Judicial Process, 1998

  • University of North Carolina School of Law – Chapel Hill, NC

     J.D. with honors, 1988

     Editor in Chief, NC Journal of International Law & Commercial Regulation

  • Western Carolina University – Cullowhee, NC

     B.S. with highest honors, 1985

Watch Video