Justice Michael D. Zimmerman

Justice Michael D. ZimmermanPartner, law firm of Zimmerman Jones Booher LLC, Salt Lake City, UT

Practice concentrated in appellate matters, and arbitration and mediation. www.zjbappeals.com




Partner, Zimmerman Jones Booher, 2011 to present, Snell & Wilmer, 2000-2011; Chair Judicial Council/Member of Judicial Council/Chief Justice/ Justice, Utah Supreme Court, 1984-2000; Adjunct Professor/Associate Professor, University of Utah College of Law, 1989-93; 1976-84; Partner, Watkiss & Campbell, 1980-84; Attorney Kruse, Landa, Zimmerman & Maycock, 1978-80; Special Counsel to Governor of Utah, State of Utah, 1978-84; Associate, O’Melveny & Myers, 1970-76; Law Clerk, Chief Justice Warren E. Burger of the U.S. Supreme Court, 1969-70.


Current law practice with Zimmerman Jones Booher concentrates on appellate matters, arbitration and mediation. As partner in Snell & Wilmer from 2000 to 2011, law practice included representation of a range of clients in commercial disputes, including litigation before state and federal courts, with special emphasis on appellate courts, as well as mediation and arbitration. Appointed to the Utah Supreme Court in 1984 by Governor Scott M. Matheson. Served as Chief Justice from 1994 through early 1998, leaving the Utah Supreme Court in January 2000. As a justice of a common law supreme court, had broad exposure to numerous areas of law. Taught antitrust and securities regulation as well as appellate advocacy as an associate professor of law and later an adjunct professor of law at the University of Utah College of Law. Heavily involved in class actions, securities fraud suits, and appellate work as a practitioner in Los Angeles for six years.


Served as an arbitrator on approximately 30 matters and as a mediator in approximately 100 since 2000. Handled disputes involving claims of constitutional takings as well as a variety of commercial matters, including class action determinations; multi-party, complex school trust exchange; business torts; contract disputes; discriminatory discharge; insurance contracts; and landlord-tenant disputes. Chaired multi-member panels and presided as single arbitrator in multi-day proceedings.


American Arbitration Association (“AAA”), Ethics and Disclosures, 12/06; AAA, Panel Chair, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, 11/05; AAA, Arbitration Awards: Safeguarding, Deciding and Writing Awards, San Francisco, 11/04; AAA, Commercial Arbitrator II training, Houston, 11/03; AAA, Arbitrator I, Fundamentals of the Arbitration Process, Los Angeles, 10/02; Utah Council on Conflict Resolution (“UCCR”), Fifth Annual ADR Symposium, Salt Lake City, 5/03; UCCR, Fourth Annual ADR Symposium, Salt Lake City, 5/02; UCCR, Third Annual ADR Symposium, Salt Lake City, 5/01; UCCR, Mediation Advocacy Workshop, Salt Lake City, 4/00; UCCR, Second Annual ADR Symposium, Salt Lake City, 4/00; Utah Dispute Resolution, Basic Mediation Training, Salt Lake City, 2/00; Harvard Law School, P.I.L. Negotiation Workshop, Cambridge, 6/99; UCCR, First Annual ADR Symposium, Salt Lake City, 4/99; various other ADR training.


Admitted to the Bar: California, 1971; Utah, 1978.


American Academy of Appellate Lawyers; American Bar Association; American Judicature Society (Board of Directors, Past Member); American Law Institute; Salt Lake County Bar Association; Conference of Chief Justices (Board of Directors, Past Member); Utah Council on Conflict Resolution (Board of Directors, Past Chair).


University of Utah (BS, Political Science, cum laude- 1966); University of Utah (JD-1969).


2011 – The Best Lawyers in America, editions 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011

2010 – Utah Legal Elite Top Lawyers, Arbitrator/Mediator 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010

2010 – Super Lawyer – Corporate Counsel Edition

2011 – Lawdragon, Top 3000 Leading Lawyers in America  2010 – 2011

2010 – Top 75 Mountain States Super Lawyers 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011

2007 – The Utah Council on Conflict Resolution Peacekeeper Award

2006 – Lawdragon, 500 Leading Judges

2005 – Humanitarian Award, National Conference for Community and Justice

2002 – Public Service Award, The Department of Corrections for the State of Utah

2002 – Pete Suazo Public Service Award, Utah Minority Bar Association

2001 – Honorary Doctor of Laws Degree, University of Utah

2000 – Friends of the Humanities Award, Utah Humanities Council.

2000 – Special Recognition Award, University of Utah College of Law Alumni Association

1998 – Distinguished Service Award, Utah State Bar.

1997 – The Peter W. Billings, Sr. American Arbitration Association Outstanding Dispute Resolution Service Award

1997 – Individual Achievement Award, Downtown Alliance, for efforts connected with siting and construction of the Scott M. Matheson Courthouse.

1994 – Inaugural recipient, “Excellence in Ethics” Award, Utah Valley State College, Center for the Study of Ethics.

1998 – Utah State Bar Appellate Court Judge of the Year.


2011 – Content consultant for series: “A History of Civil Rights in America, and “A History of Equal Rights America”, Ambrose Video Publishing, Inc., 2011.

1998 – “A New Approach to Court Reform,” Judicature, November-December 1998, Vol. 82, No. 3.

1998 – “Where We Have Been and Where We May Be Headed: Some Thoughts on the Progress of the Utah Judiciary”, 11 Utah Bar Journal 18 (1998).

1998 – “Remarks Before First 100 Dinner of Utah State Bar”, 11 Utah Bar Journal 75 (1998).

1997 – Point/Counterpoint: Mandatory Reporting of Pro Bono Service: Why it is an Issue”, 10 Utah Bar Journal 13 (1997).

1996 – “Alternative Dispute Resolution and the Utah Courts”, 9 Utah Bar Journal 11 (1996).

1996 – “Legal Ethics: The Chief Justice Explains Complications”, The Thinker, February, 1996 (Utah Valley State College, Center for the Study of Ethics).

1994, 1995, 1996, 1997 – Annual “State of the Judiciary” speech to Utah Legislature published in Utah Bar Journal. 7 Utah Bar Journal 25 (1994); 8 Utah Bar Journal 32 (1995); 9 Utah Bar Journal 27 (1996) 10 Utah Bar Journal 35 (1997); 11 Utah Bar Journal 49 (1998).

1990 – “The Law School Publication Experience – What Is It Worth?”, The Neo-Analyst, (Sept. 1990).

1989 – “Professional Standards versus Personal Ethics: “The Lawyer’s Dilemma,” 1989 Utah Law Review 1.

1986 – “Some Common Problems of Appellate Advocacy,” The Barrister 1 (Utah State Bar Young Lawyers Section, Sept. – Oct. 1986).

1986 – “An Inside View of the Utah Supreme Court,” 1986 The Barrister 1 (Utah State Bar Young Layers Section, Jan. – Feb. 1986).

1969 – Note, “Attempt to Monopolize the Offense Redefined,” 1969 Utah Law Review 704.

1967 – Case Note, “Lack of Statewide Equality in Court Delay Held Not a Denial of Equal Protection,” 1967 Utah Law Review 556.