Criminal Justice Speaker Series - Mary Lou Leary

Criminal Justice Speaker Series

Thursday, January 21, 2021 5:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Online Location


The Criminal Justice Speaker Series is a vibrant component of the MS in Criminal Justice graduate program. The speaker series brings individuals working at the cutting edge of criminal justice issues to Mason. All members of the Criminology, Law and Society Department are invited to attend. We are very excited to announce a talk by Mary Lou Leary!

Mary Lou Leary serves as an independent public policy consultant to private non-profit organizations on issues of criminal justice and drug abuse.   During the Obama administration, she was the Deputy Director for the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP), where she oversaw ONDCP’s Office of Policy, Research and Budget. 

Prior to her appointment to ONDCP, she was the Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General for the Office of Justice Programs (OJP), a position she also held from 2009 to 2012. She served as Acting Assistant Attorney General for OJP from March, 2012 to June, 2013.

Ms. Leary has 30 years of criminal justice experience at the federal, state, and local levels, with an extensive background in criminal prosecutions, government leadership, and victim advocacy. From 1999 to 2001, she held several executive positions at the Department of Justice, including Acting Assistant Attorney General for OJP, Deputy Associate Attorney General, and Acting Director of the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services. Ms. Leary also served as United States Attorney for the District of Columbia, as well as Principal Assistant and Senior Counsel to the United States Attorney, and Chief of the office’s Superior Court Division. Her career has included extensive trial and grand jury experience as an Assistant United States Attorney in the District of Columbia and Assistant District Attorney in Middlesex County, Massachusetts. Ms. Leary was Executive Director of the National Center for Victims of Crime, a leading victim advocacy organization in Washington, D.C., from 2005 to 2009. 

Deputy Director Leary received her law degree from Northwestern University School of Law, a master’s degree in education from Ohio State University, and a bachelor’s degree in English literature from Syracuse University.