Lyle Denniston

Lyle Denniston (born March 16, 1931)[1] is an American legal journalist, professor, and author, who has reported on the Supreme Court of the United States since 1958.[2][3] He wrote for SCOTUSblog, an online blog featuring news and analysis of the Supreme Court, until June 2016,[4] after previously having written for multiple national newspapers and legal periodicals. His commentary is also featured on the National Public Radio show Here and Now.[5] In addition, he has contributed to numerous books and journals, and is the author of "The Reporter and the Law: Techniques for Covering the Courts."[6] Denniston has taught classes on law, journalism, and American constitutional history at American University, Georgetown University, Penn State University, and Johns Hopkins University.[7]

Lyle Denniston
Lyle Denniston supreme court preview 2009.jpg
Lyle Denniston at the Supreme Court Preview at William & Mary Law School in Williamsburg, Va., October 2009
Born (1931-03-16) March 16, 1931 (age 91)
EducationUniversity of Nebraska–Lincoln
Georgetown University
Known forCoverage of the United States Supreme Court

Because of his long-standing coverage of the Court, he has been referred to as the "Dean Emeritus of the Supreme Court Press Corps," and he enjoys the singular distinction of being the only person to have earned a plaque in the Supreme Court press room.[8][9]


Lyle Denniston was born in Nebraska City, Nebraska. He graduated from University of Nebraska–Lincoln, and later earned a master's degree in political science and history from Georgetown University. While deeply knowledgeable about the law, Denniston is not a lawyer, though he taught at Georgetown University's law school for 8 years.[10] As a journalist he started covering the Supreme Court for the Wall Street Journal in 1958[10] during the Warren Court era, and later wrote for the Boston Globe, The Baltimore Sun, The American Lawyer, and the Washington Star.[9] He joined SCOTUSblog in February 2004, and retired in June 2016, 58 years after he first started covering the Supreme Court.[4]



  1. ^ @lyden (March 15, 2016). "Thanks to all for birthday wishes. Tomorrow, 85 and counting!" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  2. ^ S. L. Alexander (2004). Media and American Courts: A Reference Handbook. ABC-CLIO. pp. 88–89. ISBN 978-1-57607-979-9.
  3. ^ McCarthy, Tom (May 22, 2014). "Scotusblog loss of Senate press credentials fuels media uproar". The Guardian. Retrieved November 8, 2014.
  4. ^ a b Denniston, Lyle (June 25, 2016). "One journey over, the quest continues". SCOTUSblog. Retrieved June 25, 2016.
  5. ^ "Justice Talking". Archived from the original on June 17, 2011. Retrieved December 17, 2009.
  6. ^ a b "Nieman Watchdog > About Us > Contributor > Lyle Denniston".
  7. ^ a b "UNL News Releases 03/28/01". Archived from the original on June 8, 2011. Retrieved December 17, 2009.
  8. ^ "Page Not Found :: W&L Law School". {{cite web}}: Cite uses generic title (help)
  9. ^ a b Mataconis, Doug (June 26, 2016). "Lyle Denniston Leaving SCOTUSBlog". Outside the Beltway. Retrieved January 15, 2020.
  10. ^ a b "Q&A with Lyle Denniston". C-SPAN. March 8, 2007. Retrieved January 15, 2020.
  11. ^ "Chicago Tribune Team Wins Toni House Journalism Award -- re> DES MOINES, Iowa, June 25 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ --". Archived from the original on June 6, 2011.

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