The David and Mickey Bazelon Fellowship in Mental Health Law provides an opportunity for a recent graduate of Georgetown University Law Center to work with the Judge David L. Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law, the nation’s premier legal advocacy organization for people with mental illnesses and intellectual disabilities. Supported, in part, by a generous donation by a friend of Mickey Bazelon Knox and David Bazelon, the Bazelon Center is charged with raising the remaining corpus of the endowment to support the long-term sustainability of this fellowship.
Please help sustain this important program by donating to the Bazelon Fellowship online.
The public interest Fellowship is a two-year, paid position. This highly competitive position enables the Bazelon Fellow to work among leading legal and policy advocates dedicated to reforming public systems and increasing opportunities for and advancing the civil rights of adults and children with mental disabilities. In addition to working in trial courts, the Bazelon Fellow works on Supreme Court and other appellate cases, lobbies federal agencies, and supports state-based advocacy organizations.
About Judge Bazelon and Mickey Bazelon Knox
Born in Wisconsin, David L. Bazelon grew up in Chicago and practiced law there. In 1949, President Truman named him to the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, often described as the country's most influential court, next to the U.S. Supreme Court. At 40, he was the youngest judge ever appointed to that court. From 1962-1978 he served as chief judge, retiring in 1986 as a senior judge.
With his decisions, Chief Judge Bazelon pioneered the field of mental health law, holding that people committed to mental hospitals have a right to receive meaningful treatment in the least restrictive setting possible. Judge Bazelon became a leading thinker and activist on the intersection of social science, law and public policy. "Judge Bazelon has done more than any other single lawyer to remind the legal profession of its obligation to keep pace with extra-legal developments in the area of mental health," said his good friend Justice William Brennan. The Judge David L. Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law is dedicated to building on Judge Bazelon’s legacy.
Miriam (Mickey) Kellner Bazelon was a partner in her husband’s fight for social justice and a vigorous advocate for children and families. She served on many boards and became the first woman president of the Jewish Social Service Agency. She joined the federal government during President Johnson’s War on Poverty, where she was instrumental in the creation of Head Start. After the Judge’s passing, Mickey married Robert Knox and continued her work. Mickey became an honorary trustee of the Bazelon Center in 1993 and tirelessly championed the Bazelon Center's efforts for children with mental disorders until her death in 2011.
Learn more about our history here.
Please support the Fellowship, or the Bazelon Center's work, by donating online. Thank you!