Judge Christina Elmore of the 61st Judicial District Court in Michigan spoke to incoming students April 27, and presented the honor code during Western Michigan University Cooley Law School’s orientation program at the Grand Rapids campus. All entering students, faculty and staff take the honor code oath at orientation as a commitment to the law school’s ethical standards.
Prior to administering the oath, Elmore described professionalism and integrity as the cornerstones of the legal profession. She spoke of the value of self-policing and reporting duties, and how that obligation starts in law school.
She referenced lawyer jokes, which often have a negative punch line about the legal profession, and described how the jokes differed from her experiences.
“There is high importance of honor and integrity in our profession,” Elmore said. “When lawyers say something, I can believe what they are telling me, and I can trust what they are saying because they have integrity.”
She also touched on the importance of community service, encouraging the students to join the Grand Rapids Bar Association.
Elmore was appointed by Governor Rick Snyder to the Grand Rapids District Court bench in February 2016. She is a former judge advocate general for the U.S. Air Force, and has taught military law as an adjunct professor at WMU-Cooley. Her background also includes service as a former Kent County assistant prosecuting attorney and an assistant attorney general.