Newly-confirmed Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh took office this week with the first all-female team of clerks — and Hillsdale alumna Megan Lacy ’07 is one of them.
“Justice Kavanaugh has made a wise choice,” said Ryan Walsh, the chief deputy solicitor general for the state of Wisconsin, a 2009 Hillsdale graduate and a friend of Lacy.
Lacy stepped into the position from a prestigious career in law, following her graduation from the University of Virginia School of Law in 2010. Before Kavanaugh hired her, she worked with the White House counsel on Kavanaugh’s nomination, according to the New York Times, and as chief counsel to Sen. Chuck Grassley, chairman of the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee.
“She has a good record here and in law school,” said Hillsdale College President Larry Arnn in an email, noting that Lacy clerked for Judge Diarmuid O’Scannlain on the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.
O’Scannlain “admired her work very much,” Arnn said. “She has gained credit wherever she goes.”
Ryan Mauldin ’07, a close friend of Lacy, said no one who has followed Lacy’s career is surprised that she got the clerkship.
“She’s worked extremely hard,” Mauldin said. “She’s well prepared and eminently qualified.”
As a student, Lacy was “brilliant,” Arnn said.
“She is also fine person in mind and character,” he said. “She is delightful to know. She has that mixture of assertiveness and humility that is impressive and breeds trust.”
Friends of Lacy who knew her at Hillsdale said she had a rare combination of talent and humility.
“Megan has always been friendly and loyal and humble and hardworking, and also pretty much correct about everything,” said Jason Gehrke ’07, recalling a time when he wished he’d heeded Lacy’s advice about a freshman year paper for a history course.
Full of “ardent curiosity,” Lacy was always eager to engage in deep discussions and ask professors questions outside of class, Mauldin recalled.
Professor of History Mark Kalthoff said he knew Lacy as a student in several of his classes, and she became a family friend; often, she would visit his family’s house after church with friends, help cook, and chat around the kitchen table.
“She was an excellent student, very bright, very conscientious,” Kalthoff said. “She was very interested in ideas and life of the mind, but also very serious about her Christian faith and the work that she does.”
A member of Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority, Lacy was heavily involved on campus and in volunteer work and remained a top-notch and committed student, Gehrke recalled.
Lacy was a competitive ice skater before coming to Hillsdale, Mauldin said.
“She was always at the top of anything she’s going after,” he said.
Arnn said he’s “not surprised” that Kavanaugh thought highly of Lacy.
“She will do great work for the Justice, and thereafter she will be one of the leading young lawyers in the country,” Arnn said. “But she was already that.”