The Catholic University of America
National Trial Team Director Bios

 John N. Sharifi, Director

John SharifiProfessor Sharifi has been a member of the law school faculty since 2008. He teaches Evidence and Advanced Trial Practice and has served as interim director of the Innocence Project Clinic. His scholarly interests include Evidence and criminal litigation, and he is published in The American Criminal Law ReviewThe American Journal of Trial Advocacy, and the Akron Law Review. In 2013 and 2016, the student body voted Professor Sharifi Adjunct Professor of the Year.

In addition to his work at the law school, Professor Sharifi has been an active criminal defense attorney since 2002. A former public defender, he maintains a trial and appellate practice that has included several highly publicized trials and reported decisions. Thomson-Reuters SuperLawyers® and The National Trial Lawyers Top 100™ have each recognized him as a top criminal defense attorney in Maryland.

Professor Sharifi earned a J.D. from The Catholic University, Columbus School of Law. As a law student, he founded the law school’s chapter of the Innocence Project, and was part of the moot court trial team that won the ABA Criminal Justice Trial Competition. Professor Sharifi also has an LL.M. degree from The George Washington University Law Center. 

Lindsey Cloud Mervis, Associate Director

Lindsey MervisProfessor Mervis has been an adjunct faculty member since 2014. She also teaches Advanced Trial Practice.

Professor Mervis is a Legal Communications Trainer and Coach with KNP Communications, leading presentation skills trainings at many of the most reputable law firms in the United States. A former performing artist, she holds a B.F.A in Theatre Performance from Miami University, and graduated cum laude from The Catholic University of America, Columbus School of Law.

During law school, Professor Mervis served as President of the Society of Trial Advocates, and was a finalist in the 2011 Costello National Criminal Law Trial Advocacy Competition. She was also elected Student Commencement Speaker for the class of 2012. Upon graduation, Professor Mervis completed a constitutional law fellowship at the Institute for Justice. She has represented clients in civil and criminal litigation, and is a member of the Maryland Bar.