Roderick L. Ireland is the first African American Chief Justice of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court. He is leaving the bench in July and has accepted the position as Distinguished Professor of Criminology and Criminal Justice in the College of Social Sciences and Humanities at Northeastern University in Boston. He has served as an adjunct professor at the university since 1978.
“After teaching at Northeastern for 36 years, I look forward to working with students and faculty in my new, full-time role,” Chief Justice Ireland said. “I am especially excited about sharing my first-hand accounts and insights into how government operates and responds to outside forces.”
Dr. Ireland is a native of Springfield, Massachusetts. He is a graduate of The Lincoln University in Pennsylvania and Columbia Law School. He holds a master of laws degree from Harvard Law School and a Ph.D. in law, policy, and society from Northeastern University. In 1977, he was appointed to the state’s Juvenile Court by then Governor Michael Dukakis. He was named to the Supreme Judicial Court in 1997 and elevated to Chief Justice in 2010.