Faculty & Staff Insider

Stand With the Innocent: Wrongful Convictions and Criminal Justice Reform

UW Law Professor Jacqueline McMurtrie, who founded the Washington Innocence Project, presented the University Faculty Lecture on Thursday, Jan. 28. 

McMurtrie discussed government accountability, the ethical responsibility of lawyers and judges to acknowledge mistakes, and the importance of pursuing reform until our criminal justice system is truly just.

Watch a recording of the lecture below.

Jacqueline McMurtrie

McMurtrie is the UW Betts, Patterson and Mines Professor Emerita of Law. In 1997, she founded the Washington Innocence Project — the nation’s third innocence organization — and oversaw its growth from a volunteer-led effort to a clinical law program at the University of Washington. WashIP has exonerated 15 people who collectively served over 100 years in prison for crimes they did not commit, and it has successfully advocated for laws to protect the innocent.

Read a Q&A with Professor McMurtrie and learn more about her work. 


This lecture, originally scheduled for April 2020, was postponed in response to COVID-19 restrictions and was offered as an online event on Jan. 28, 2021. The 2021 University Faculty Lecture will be held in fall quarter 2021.


About the University Faculty Lecture

Since 1976, this annual award has honored current or emeritus faculty whose research, scholarship or art has been widely recognized by their peers and whose achievements have had a substantial impact on their profession, the research or performance of others, and society as a whole.

View past lectures