Bruce Jacob: A Leading Voice in Public Defense

9 Pages Posted: 2 May 2019

See all articles by Ellen S. Podgor

Ellen S. Podgor

Stetson University College of Law

Date Written: March 25, 2019


This Essay examines the events that led to Dean Emeritus Bruce Jacob being the recipient of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers’ (NACDL) prestigious Champion of Indigent Defense Award. Dean Jacob represented the State of Florida in the Gideon v. Wainwright case, arguing for adherence to Betts v. Brady which did not provide the right to counsel for indigent state defendants absent special circumstances. After arguing Gideon in the Supreme Court, he spent much of his career advocating for indigent defendants’ rights to effective assistance of counsel. Although some may find an irony in these two roles, this Essay notes the symmetry when looking at Dean Jacob as a true “minister of justice.”

Keywords: Gideon, Minister of Justice, NACDL

JEL Classification: K14

Suggested Citation

Podgor, Ellen S., Bruce Jacob: A Leading Voice in Public Defense (March 25, 2019). Stetson Law Review, Vol. 48, 2019, Stetson University College of Law Research Paper No. 2019-1 , Available at SSRN:

Ellen S. Podgor (Contact Author)

Stetson University College of Law ( email )

1401 61st Street South
Gulfport, FL 33707
United States
727 562 7348 (Phone)


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