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Donald Lewis

Image: Donald Lewis

Board Member, First elected: 2013


Most of the problems lawyers solve have little to do with law and everything to do with improving lives. Our best advice takes shape when we cross other disciplines and engage other professions. That’s why no one should be surprised to see lawyers working with physicians and their business partners at the intersection of health, health care and public policy.


Don is a co-founder and shareholder of Nilan Johnson Lewis, a litigation firm based in Minneapolis focusing on defense of major corporate clients. He recently returned to private law practice after serving as dean of Hamline University Law School. Don has had an extensive career as a trial lawyer, working as an assistant U.S. attorney in Minneapolis and a trial attorney in the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Justice Department in Washington.

Don is a member of the American Law Institute, and a fellow of both the American College of Trial Lawyers and the American Bar Association Foundation. He is also a co-founder of the Minnesota Association of Black Lawyers and has served on the Board of Governors of the National Bar Association.


  • Bachelor of Science in Journalism, Northwestern University
  • Juris Doctor, Harvard Law School


Donald’s wife, Diane Bradley-Lewis, teaches at Minneapolis Southwest High School. They reside in south Minneapolis and have three adult children and seven grandchildren.

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