Born the daughter of an Assistant Attorney General for the State of Connecticut and being raised in an enivironment of accountability, legality and justice, Lori St John went on to first study accounting at the University of Connecticut.
For over a decade she practiced as a Certified Public Accountant. A chance volunteer opportunity then led her to confirm the importance of, and seek further education in, the field of law. She first studied at the New England School of Law and continued at, and graduated from, the Rutgers School of Law in Newark, New Jersey. As a law review journal member of the New England Journal on Criminal and Civil Confinement, she published Commonwealth of Virginia v. O’Dell: Truth and Justice or Confuse the Courts, the DNA Controversy, 25 NEW ENG. J. ON CRIM. & CIV. CONFINEMENT 311 (1999), which earned her the distinguished Scholar’s Paper Award at the Annual Academic Convocation at the Suffolk University Law School Lawyers’ Guild. While a student at the Rutgers School of Law she founded and directed the Innocence Project for Justice.
At graduation she received the Eli Jarmel Memorial Prize, a Public Interest Award for “the student demonstrating the greatest interest and proficiency in public interest law.” After graduation she continued to teach at the law school while practicing as an Associate Deputy Public Defender for the Adult Felony Division of the Essex County Public Defender’s Office in Newark, New Jersey. She furthered her practice in Colorado where she litigated criminal cases in the adult felony court while also engaging in post-conviction appellate work for the Alternate Defense Counsel for the State of Colorado. While a resident in Colorado she served as a committee member of the Colorado Innocence Project. Her entrepreneurial spirit led her to successfully engage in a mountain community real estate development project, creating a planned urban development outside of Denver. Admitted to the bar in New York, New Jersey and Colorado, she currently resides in Florida and is an international speaker and educator.
Lori’s volunteer work, just prior to law school, capituled her into an almost four-year David and Goliath fight against the government to save an innocent man from execution. Her force and determination drew Sister Helen Prejean (author of Dead Man Walking) as she galvanized unprecedented international support, including the Italian and European Parliaments, Pope John Paul II and Mother Teresa. Recognized as an expert in her field she commenced the 50th Anniversary of the Declaration of Human Rights in Florence, Italy where, as the lead speaker, she represented the United States. Lori has worked and consulted with many of the most noted legal and scientific experts in the United States.
Lori’s journey has been documented in a narrative non-fiction book entitled The Corruption of Innocence, a Journey for Justice. The Corruption of Innocence offers a rare inside look at the detailed manner in which a wrongful conviction can and does occur, by describing, in harrowing terms, what happens when the wrong people (and those with a political agenda) stand behind a conviction. It depicts just how this effects the outcome of a case in the courts, and in the media.
Lori St John demonstrates how one inspired woman with a mission can make a difference.