Michael O. Leavitt Center for Politics & Public Service
Southern Utah University
351 West Center Street, Suite 173
Cedar City, UT 84720
Telephone (Cell): 435-704-4912
Eric Kirby is the Executive Director of the Michael O. Leavitt Center for Politics & Public Service. He returned to Southern Utah University in 2012 after spending several years practicing law with one of Colorado’s most respected civil litigation law firms. Mr. Kirby earned his B.A. in political science with a minor in business management at Southern Utah University. During his time at Southern Utah University, Mr. Kirby served in various leadership capacities and sat on numerous committees and councils. During his senior year at Southern Utah University, Mr. Kirby was awarded the prestigious R. Kenneth Benson Award for most outstanding male student of the year.
Upon graduating from Southern Utah University, Mr. Kirby interned with U.S. Senator Orrin G. Hatch and the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee in Washington, DC. He then went on to obtain his Master’s of Administration and Juris Doctor degrees from the University of Denver. During law school, Mr. Kirby received the Scholastic Excellence Awards for legal writing and research, counseling and negotiations, and advanced legal writing. Upon graduating from law school, Mr. Kirby successfully passed the bar exams in Utah, Colorado, and Wyoming. He is fluent in Spanish and was awarded a diploma in business from the Universidad de Alcala.
In addition to practicing law, Mr. Kirby assisted with a gubernatorial campaign, clerked for U.S. Magistrate Judge Craig B. Shaffer, and worked as a Deputy Clerk in the civil division for the U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado. For the past three years (2011-12, 2012-13, 2013-14), Mr. Kirby has been selected as a Legal Rising Star, an award presented by Super Lawyers (Thomas Reuters) to less than 3% of attorneys based on peer recognition and professional achievement. Mr. Kirby was also featured as a Top Attorney-Rising Star in the 2012 and 2013 editions of Colorado Law & Politics and the Denver Post.
Mr. Kirby was recently selected as Southern Utah University's Advisor of the Year (2012-2013), and after his first year of directing the Leavitt Center for Politics, the Center was selected as Southern Utah University's Organization of the Year. Mr. Kirby continues to practice law in Colorado, Utah, and Wyoming in an of-counsel capacity and also teaches at SUU and serves as an Advisor of Student Governance, Development and Leadership for SUUSA. Mr. Kirby has two published articles, "Jihad" and "The Original Intent of Foreign Policy", in the Humanities and Social Science Literary Journal.
When he is not at work, Mr. Kirby enjoys hiking, rappelling, and spending time with his wife and four children.