Published on June 14, 2014 by Amy
Stacy L. Leeds (b. 1971) is a Law professor, scholar, and former Supreme Court Justice for the Cherokee Nation. She is currently the Dean of the University of Arkansas School of Law. She was a candidate for Principal Chief of the Cherokee Nation in 2007.
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Stacy Leeds earned her MBA from the University of Tennessee Executive MBA program, her Master of Laws degree from the University of Wisconsin and her Juris Doctor degree from University of Tulsa. She earned her Bachelor of Arts degree from Washington University in St. Louis.
She formerly served as Interim Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Professor of Law at the University of Kansas and the director of Tribal Law and Government Center at KU. Previously Leeds taught law at the University of North Dakota and served as director of the Northern Plains Indian Law Center.
Leeds currently serves as the chief judge of the Prairie Band of Potawatomi Nation’s District Court, the associate judge of the Kaw Nation’s Supreme Court, and the chief justice of the Kickapoo Tribe of Oklahoma’s Supreme Court.
Leeds serves on the board of the National American Indian Court Judge’s Association and on the National Judicial College’s tribal advisory board.
She was the youngest person to ever serve as a Cherokee Nation Supreme Court judge, as well as the only woman.
In the past, she has served as a special judge for the Muscogee Creek Nation’s District Court and associate judge of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians’s Court of Appeals.
In 2011, Leeds accepted the position of Dean at the University of Arkansas, School of Law In Fayetteville, Arkansas.
Leeds received the Fletcher Fellowship in 2008, when she was also named a nonresident fellow of the W. E. B. Du Bois Institute at Harvard University. While teaching at the University of Wisconsin, she was the William H. Hastie Fellow.
In 2006 Leeds received the AALS Clyde Ferguson Award for Excellence in Teaching, Service, and Scholarship. At KU she received the Immel Award for Teaching Excellence, and she has been named Alumni of the Year from the National Native American Law Students Association.
She grew up in Muskogee, Oklahoma and currently lives with her son near Tahlequah. She is a citizen of the Cherokee Nation.