Potter Stewart American Inn of Court


Nearly 30 years ago, the American Inns of Court was founded to help lawyers and judges rise to higher levels of excellence, professionalism, and ethical awareness. 

Modeled after the traditional English version of legal apprenticeship, but modified to fit the particular needs of the American legal system, the Inns of Court were developed out of a discussion in the late 1970s among the United States’ members of the Anglo-American exchange of lawyers and judges, including Chief Justice Warren E. Burger and Chief Judge of the Ninth Circuit, J. Clifford Wallace.   Each Inn includes several categories of members:

  • Masters of the Bench (judges, lawyers, and law professors who have demonstrated superior character, ability, and competence as advocates – typically with 15 or more years of experience);
  • Barristers (younger and/or less experienced lawyers); and
  • Pupils (third-year law students).   

The membership is further subdivided into “pupilage groups,” each of which is composed of several members from each membership category, and is responsible for conducting one program for the Inn each year.  Pupilage groups convene outside of the monthly Inn meetings to prepare their presentations.

Here in Cincinnati, more than 100 attorneys and judges participate in the Potter Stewart American Inn of Court – named for former U.S.  Supreme Court Justice and Queen City native Potter Stewart – each season.


President                                                         Immediate Past President
Judge Michael R. Barrett                                   Judge Susan J. Dlott                                          

Vice President                                               Secretary
Judge Dennis S. Helmick                                  John B. Pinney, Esq.

Treasurer                                                        Executive Director
Michael D. Eagen, Esq.                                      Jean Geoppinger McCoy, Esq.

Message from the Executive Director

The Potter Stewart Inn meets once a month from September to May (except December) to “break bread” and hold programs and discussions on matter of ethics, litigation skills and professionalism.  The program helps lawyers become more effective advocates and counselors, with a keener ethical awareness.  Members learn side-by-side with the most experienced judges and attorneys in the community.  The program includes a joint session with the Salmon P. Chase (Northern Kentucky) Inn each season, and culminates with final banquet in May, where the Andrew Dennison Courageous Advocate Award is presented to an attorney who “upholds the professional obligation to represent the poor, the unpopular or the friendless.”

The Cincinnati Bar Association provides administrative support to the Inn.  For more information on the Potter Stewart Inn, please contact Dimity Orlet at the Cincinnati Bar Association (513/699-1401 or dvorlet@cincybar.org).


2017/2018 Information

Pupilage Groups and Programs Information

General Information

American Inns of Court Website

About the Andrew Dennison Courageous Advocate Award

Courageous Advocate Nomination Form

Archive of Program Handouts

February 2013

March 2013

September 2013

October 2013

November 2013

January 2014

February 2014

March 2014

April 2014

September 2014

Attorney Fees Handout_courtesy of R. Laufman
October 2014
November 2014
January 2015
February 2015
March 2015

April 2015

September 2015

October 2015

November 2015

January 2016

February 2016

March 2016

April 2016

September 2016

October 2016

November 2016

January 2017

February 2017

March 2017

April 2017

October 2017
November 2017
April 2018
Rachlinski Slides
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