Michael CrowellA native of Mississippi and a graduate of the University of North Carolina and Harvard Law School, Michael Crowell came to Tharrington Smith in 1985. Before that he was a professor of public law and government at the Institute of Government in Chapel Hill, during which time he also served as director of bill drafting for the North Carolina General Assembly and as a consultant to legislative committees and study commissions dealing with election laws, employment discrimination and rewrites of the criminal code and ABC laws.
Mr. Crowell�s areas of practice include local government law, voting rights, election protests, administrative law, appeals and legislation. He is general counsel to the North Carolina Nurses Association and North Carolina Beer & Wine Wholesalers Association. He also is a certified mediator.
Significant appellate court cases Mr. Crowell has argued include Craven County Board of Education v. Boyles, 343 NC 87 (1996) (state agency fines go to public schools); Brannon v. North Carolina State Board of Elections, 331 NC 335 (1992) (judges appointed to fill vacancies serve only unexpired terms); Moore v. Knightdale Board of Elections, 331 NC 1 (1992) (legislature cannot require resignation from council seat to run for mayor); Lewis v. Alamance County, N.C., 99 F3d 600 (4th Cir. 1996), cert. denied, 520 US 1229 (1997) (success of minority candidates negates Voting Rights Act claim); and McGhee v. Granville County, N.C., 860 F2d 110 (4th Cir. 1987) (federal court must accept lawful county plan to correct Voting Rights Act violation).
Mr. Crowell has been licensed to practice law in North Carolina since 1971 and is admitted to practice before all federal courts in North Carolina, the District of Columbia and Fourth Circuit Courts of Appeals, and the United States Supreme Court. He is a member of the North Carolina and Wake County bar associations; chaired the Administrative Law Section of the North Carolina Bar Association in 1991-92. He served on the American Bar Association�s Ad Hoc Committee on State Justice Initiative in 1996-97. From 1994 through 1996 he served as director of the Commission for the Future of Justice and the Courts in North Carolina.
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