Our Team

Institute Leadership & Staff

Institute Leadership


David F. Levi

David F. Levi

Levi Family Professor of Law and Judicial Studies and Director of the Bolch Judicial Institute

David F. Levi was the James B. Duke and Benjamin N. Duke Dean of the School of Law from 2007 to 2018. He previously served as the Chief United States District Judge for the Eastern District of California with chambers in Sacramento. He was appointed United States Attorney by President Ronald Reagan in 1986 and a United States district judge by President George H. W. Bush in 1990. He has served as chair of two Judicial Conference committees by appointment of the Chief Justice. He was chair of the Civil Rules Advisory Committee (2000-2003) and chair of the Standing Committee on the Rules of Practice and Procedure (2003-2007); he was reappointed to serve as a member of that committee (2009-2015). In 2014, he was appointed chair of the American Bar Association’s Standing Committee on the American Judicial System, and in 2015, he was named co-chair of the North Carolina Commission on the Administration of Law and Justice. He is an elected fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and currently serves as president of the American Law Institute (ALI). He also is a member of the ALI Council and was an advisor to the ALI’s Federal Judicial Code Revision and Aggregate Litigation projects.

Melinda Myers Vaughn

Melinda Myers Vaughn

Associate Director, Operations and Strategy

Melinda Myers Vaughn is associate director, operations and strategy, for the Bolch Judicial Institute and managing editor of Judicature, the Institute’s scholarly journal about judging and the administration of justice. She joined the Institute in 2015 to help launch Judicature after Duke took over the 100-year-old publication from the now-defunct American Judicature Society. She is experienced in strategic communications, content marketing, writing and publications development, web and multimedia initiatives, media relations, and event planning. She previously served as executive director of communications and events for Duke Law School (2007-2013); as senior editor and then senior manager for content marketing for Citrix’s software-as-a-service division (2013-2015); and as executive director of communications and events at the University of Southern California Gould School of Law (2003-2007). She has worked in development communications, public relations, and as an editor and journalist in Utah, California, and Ohio. She holds degrees in English Literature and Mass Communications from the University of Utah.

Amelia Ashton Thorn

Amelia Ashton Thorn

Associate Director for Special Projects

Amelia Ashton Thorn is assistant director for special projects at the Bolch Judicial Institute. In her role, she designs educational programming for state and federal judges and serves as the articles editor for Judicature, the Institute’s scholarly journal about the administration of justice. She was previously the inaugural Bolch Judicial Institute Fellow. Amelia clerked for Justice Don R. Willett of the Texas Supreme Court (now of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit) as well as for Judge Harry T. Edwards of the United States Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit. She subsequently worked as an associate at Williams & Connolly and Crowell & Moring, as well as an assistant general counsel at the American Chemistry Council, one of the nation’s oldest and largest trade associations. She has substantial publishing experience, having worked as a writer and editor prior to law school, including acting as editor-in-chief for a magazine with a circulation of more than 70,000. She graduated magna cum laudefrom Duke Law, where she headed all student publication as the Senior Notes Editor of the Duke Law Journal and was a recipient of the Justin Miller Award. Amelia received her Bachelor of Arts from Stanford University with university distinction and departmental honors. She has been published in law reviews, magazines, and poetry journals.

Associated Faculty


Jack Knight

Jack Knight

Frederic Cleaveland Professor of Law and Political Science

Jack Knight is the Frederic Cleaveland Professor of Law and Political Science at Duke University. A renowned political scientist and legal theorist, he focuses his scholarship on modern social and political theory, law and legal theory, and political economy. He holds a joint appointment with Duke Law School and Duke’s Trinity College of Arts and Sciences, where he teaches in the Politics, Philosophy and Economics Program. At the Law School, he teaches courses on social scientific approaches to law and courts, as well as courses on the political economy of social institutions.

Margaret H. Lemos

Margaret H. Lemos

Duke Law Professor

Margaret H. Lemos is a scholar of constitutional law, legal institutions, and procedure.  Her scholarship focuses on the institutions of law interpretation and enforcement and their effects on substantive rights. She writes in four related fields: federalism; administrative law, including the relationship between courts and agencies; statutory interpretation; and civil procedure. Her articles have been published in the Supreme Court Review as well as in the Harvard, New York University, Texas, Minnesota, Vanderbilt, and Notre Dame law reviews.

Marin K. Levy

Marin K. Levy

Duke Law Professor

Marin K. Levy is an associate professor of law at Duke. Her principal academic interests include civil procedure, judicial administration, remedies, and federal courts. Her work has been published or is forthcoming in the Yale Law Journal, the University of Chicago Law Review, the Cornell Law Review, and the California Law Journal, among others. Levy is also a co-author of Federal Standards of Review: Appellate Court Review of District Court Decisions and Agency Actions (2nd ed.) with Judge Harry T. Edwards and Linda A. Elliott.

Institute Staff


Ann Yandian

Ann Yandian

Program Manager

Ann Yandian is a program manager at the Bolch Judicial Institute. She came to Duke Law in 2012 to manage the Master of Judicial Studies Program. She previously worked at the Maine State Legislature in the nonpartisan fiscal office, staffing the Appropriations Committee (2006-2012), and the University of Maine System (1992-2006). She holds a degree in Public Administration.

Kristin Triebel

Kristin Triebel

Program Coordinator

Kristin Triebel is a program coordinator at the Bolch Judicial Institute. After eight years as a litigation paralegal in Raleigh, she came to Duke Law School as an administrative assistant in the Dean’s Office in 2016.  She joined the Institute in 2018.  She assists with the planning and implementation of programming related to judicial education and training, scholarly conferences and symposia, awards programs, board meetings, and alumni gatherings.

Lora Beth Farmer

Lora Beth Farmer

Program Coordinator

Lora Beth Farmer is a program coordinator at the Bolch Judicial Institute. She joined Duke Law in 2016. A North Carolina State Bar Certified Paralegal with over 20 years of experience in litigation, Lora Beth also holds a degree in business and accounting and manages finances for the Institute’s various programs.

Eric Surber

Eric Surber

Communications Manager

Eric Surber is a communications specialist at the Bolch Judicial Institute. In his current role, he is primarily responsible for maintaining the institute’s digital presence, including social media, newsletters, and press releases. Eric is a 2016 graduate of UNC-Chapel Hill’s School of Media and Journalism, and has held marketing leadership and content creation roles at lifestyle magazine and digital media companies. He has a particular interest in applying UX/UI principles and inbound marketing methodologies to expand audiences. Outside of the law school, Eric enjoys music and was the 2015-2016 organ scholar at Duke University Chapel.

Student Fellows


Catherine Gorey

Catherine Gorey

Student Fellow

Catherine Gorey is a first-year law student and research assistant for Bolch Judicial Institute’s trauma education project. At Duke, she is a 1L representative for the Coalition Against Gendered Violence and volunteers with Legal Aid of North Carolina’s Domestic Violence Unit through its pro bono project.

Marie Lee

Marie Lee

Student Fellow

Marie Lee (Duke Law JD’24) is a student editor for Judicature. Outside of this role, she helps edit and maintain the Judicature website and assists the Institute staff with general administration.

Flora Lipsky

Flora Lipsky

Student Fellow

Flora Lipsky is a student editor for Judicature and the Bolch Judicial Institute. She also serves as the junior special projects editor on the Alaska Law Review and as a member of the Mock Trial executive board. Prior to beginning 2L, she worked as a research assistant for the Duke Center for Firearms Law.

Grady MacPhee

Grady MacPhee

Student Fellow

Grady MacPhee is a research assistant for the Bolch Judicial Institute and a student editor for Judicature. He also serves as a staff editor on the Duke Law Journal. During his 1L summer, Grady was a judicial intern for U.S. District Court Judge Catherine C. Eagles of the Middle District of North Carolina. He holds a degree in political science from Haverford College. Outside the law school, Grady enjoys fly fishing and hiking with his wife, Hannah, and their dog, Tallulah.

Matthew McKnight

Matthew McKnight

Student Fellow

Matthew McKnight is a student editor for Judicature and the Bolch Judicial Institute. He is also President of the Duke Law Federalist Society and a member of the Mock Trial Board, the Business Law Society, and the Christian Legal Society. During his 1L summer, Matthew worked as a summer associate for Teamworthy Ventures in Greenwich, Connecticut. He holds an undergraduate degree in history from the University of North Carolina and a graduate degree in theology from Oxford University.

Neeki Memarzadeh

Neeki Memarzadeh

Student Fellow

Neeki Memarzadeh (JD/LLM ’23) is a student editor on Judicature. She also serves as Managing Editor on the Duke Journal of Comparative & International Law. During her 1L summer, Neeki worked as a judicial intern for the Honorable Todd M. Hughes of the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. She worked as a summer associate at K&L Gates in DC in 2022.

George Werner

George Werner

Student Fellow

George Werner is a student editor for Judicature and a research assistant for the Bolch Judicial Institute. He is also a Duke Law Journal staff editor. George spent the summer before 2L working on an independent research and writing project funded by the Duke Law Teaching Committee. Before Duke Law, he studied history at Middlebury College with a focus on the early modern period.

John Wiener

John Wiener

Student Fellow

John Wiener is a research assistant for the Bolch Judicial Institute. At Duke, he served as the President of the Texas Club, Vice President of the Energy Society, and Executive Editor of the Environmental Law and Policy Forum. Upon graduating, John will join an international law firm in Houston, Texas.

Undergraduate Assistants


Anna McFarlane

Anna McFarlane

Undergraduate Assistant

Anna McFarlane is a third-year international undergraduate student at Duke, studying Political Science and Policy Journalism, with a concentration in Security, Peace and Conflict. Anna is a student assistant at the Bolch Judicial Institute, assisting Institute staff with digital communication and program administration.