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The Tennessee Attorney General's Office announces the passing of its Solicitor General Michael E. Moore

michael e mooreMichael E. Moore, 60, who served as Tennessee's solicitor general for 17 years, died Sunday morning after a lengthy illness. As solicitor general, he headed the Office of the Solicitor General (OSG) which oversees and coordinates all appellate litigation practice in the Tennessee Supreme Court, Court of Appeals, and Court of Criminal Appeals and the United States Supreme Court and Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals. Mr. Moore also supervised the drafting of opinions issued by the Office. Mr. Moore also served as Acting Attorney General in October 2006 pending appointment of the current attorney general.

"Words cannot express what we have lost both personally and professionally," Attorney General Bob Cooper said. "As Solicitor General, Mike was brilliant, principled and fearless, and under his leadership, our solicitor general's office was second to none. As a friend, Mike was a delightful companion who was always ready with a quick wit, kind word or helpful thought as the situation required."

In addition to numerous appearances representing the State in the Tennessee Supreme Court and Sixth Circuit, Mr. Moore argued three cases before the United States Supreme Court: Rogers v. Tennessee (2001), Bell v. Cone (2002) and Tennessee v. Lane (2004). The National Association of Attorneys General awarded him its U.S. Supreme Court Best Brief Award during the 1999 Term for his contribution to the amicus brief for the states in Kimel v. Florida Board of Regents, 528 U.S. 62 (2000).

Prior to joining the Tennessee Attorney General's Office in December 1993, Mr. Moore served as Director of Law for the Metropolitan Government of Nashville and Davidson County from 1985 to 1987 under Mayor Richard Fulton. He worked in private practice for the Nashville law firm of Waller Lansden Dortch & Davis from 1979 to 1985 and 1987 to 1993. He served as law clerk to Judge Gilbert S. Merritt, United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, 1978-1979, and as an attorney in the Appellate Section, Criminal Division, United States Department of Justice in Washington, D.C., 1975-1978. He served on the Charter Revision Commission of the Metropolitan Government of Nashville and Davidson County.

Mr. Moore obtained his J.D. from Stanford University in 1975 and was admitted to the California and Tennessee bars. He received his A.B. from Dartmouth College in 1972 (summa cum laude with high distinction). He graduated from Dobyns-Bennett High School in Kingsport in 1968.

He was an avid sports fan, enjoying his beloved alma mater Stanford University football and basketball games. He also rooted for the Tennessee Volunteers, whom friends said he was thrilled to see win on Saturday. He was also a Boston Red Sox baseball fan.

Mr. Moore was a student and enthusiast of French language and culture, traveling several times to France and participating in the Nashville chapter of the Alliance Francaise. He often spoke of his father's military service in France in World War II.

Mr. Moore was born in Leominster, MA, in 1950 and grew up in Kingsport, TN. He is survived by his brother, Robert, and sister-in-law, Barbara, who reside in Oswego, N.Y. and two nieces, Sarita of Pittsburgh, PA, and Laura of Toronto, Canada.

Published November 16, 2010

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