Russell Carparelli, a judge on the Colorado Court of Appeals, has been named executive director of the American Judicature Society (AJS), now headquartered at Vanderbilt Law School. Carpelli’s appointment was announced by AJS president Martha Hill Jamison. His appointment will begin January 1, 2014, following his retirement from the bench.
The AJS announced an affiliation with Vanderbilt Law School in July, including relocating to the Vanderbilt campus from Des Moines.
Founded in 1913, the AJS is a nonpartisan organization with a national membership of judges, lawyers and other citizens interested in improving the nation’s courts and the administration of justice. The AJS mission is to secure and promote an independent and qualified judiciary and a fair system of justice.
“I am honored to help lead AJS as it begins its second century and builds its relationship with Vanderbilt Law School,” Carparelli said. “The task is nothing less than helping to preserve the rule of law and the freedom, equality and prosperity it enables.”
Carparelli graduated from the U.S. Air Force Academy, and received his J.D. from the University of Denver College of Law. He earned a Master of Laws from the University of Virginia, and then served in the Air Force Judge Advocate General Corps from 1970-90, retiring as a Lieutenant Colonel. He served in various capacities in the course of his Air Force career, including prosecutor, defender, military trial court judge and military appellate court judge, civil litigator, and litigation adviser to the Air Force General Staff. He then spent 12 years in private practice as a commercial litigator in Denverbefore his appointment to the bench.
He was appointed to the Colorado Court of Appeals, the position in which he currently serves, in February 2003. On the Court of Appeals, Judge Carparelli had a leadership role on the Chief Justice’s Commission on the Legal Profession, was a member of the Colorado and Denver Bar Associations’ Professionalism Coordinating Council, was a member of the Colorado Judicial Institute’s Board of Directors, and co-founded the ABA award-winning “Our Courts” adult public education program.
“I am thrilled that AJS has been able to hire a leader of Judge Carparelli’s caliber. He has an exemplary record of service and embodies all of the characteristics one could want in an Executive Director,” said Chris Guthrie, dean of Vanderbilt Law School. “This is great news for AJS and for Vanderbilt Law School, and I am looking forward to working with Russ.”