Law Firm / Organization
Maryland Office of the Public Defender
Title / Position
Director of Training
Patrice A. Fulcher is the Director of Training for the Maryland Office of the Public Defender (OPD). She joined OPD in 2015, and is responsible for heading the Agency’s Gideon’s Promise Certified, New Hire Attorney Training Program; supervising the Attorney CLE requirements; developing/managing all other public defender training curriculum for OPD’s attorneys, leaders, and core staff throughout the state. Patrice has facilitated agency-wide town halls on race, equity, and managing the effects of police violence on communities of color. She also conducts training on implicit bias; how to be an ally, anti-racist, and abolitionist; how to engage in conversations about race; and advancing racial diversity in defender offices. Additionally, Patrice is a member of OPD’s strategic planning team, and has helped other public defender offices develop their strategic plans. Prior to becoming OPD’s Director of Training, Patrice was the first Black woman tenured as an Associate Professor at Atlanta’s John Marshall Law School. She was a law professor 2007-2015, and her scholarship and other publications focused on issues surrounding the Prison Industrial Complex: prison privatization, the exploitation of prison laborers, the effects of the utilization of prison video visitation systems, and other profiteering schemes that benefit from mass incarceration. She has lectured extensively on these issues as well as the role that systemic racism has played on U.S. criminal law decisions, capital defense, juveniles charged as adults, the importance of client-centered representation, successful defense trial investigations, and effective storytelling techniques for public defenders and defense attorneys throughout the U.S. From 1995-2007, Patrice successfully represented clients in Georgia facing the death penalty as well as all other major felony offenses. She did so while serving as a Senior Staff Attorney for the Georgia Capital Defender and the Fulton County Public Defender offices, and as Senior Staff Attorney for the Georgia Fulton County Conflict Defender. Moreover, she provided representation and research for abused and neglected children with the DeKalb County Georgia Juvenile Court, and helped to litigate against unconstitutional jail conditions and practices with the Southern Center for Human Rights. Patrice has been a Core Instructor for Gideon’s Promise, Inc. since its inception, and is a faculty member for the National Criminal Defense College. Likewise, she has served as a litigation instructor for The Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia, The Kentucky Death Penalty Institute, The Mississippi Office of the State Public Defender Training Division, The National Association for Public Defense, The American Bar Association NACDL National Defender Training Program, The National Legal Aid & Defender Association (NSAMS Conference), Neighborhood Defender Service of Detroit, and is a faculty member of the Harvard Law School Trial Advocacy Workshop. Patrice has presented by request for numerous justice organizations such as the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund, the Southern Poverty Law Center, and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. Patrice received her J.D. from Emory University School of Law in 1995 and her B.A. from Howard University in 1992. She is admitted to practice law in Georgia and Maryland.