Elon Law alum named clerk of the Supreme Court of North Carolina

Chief Justice Paul Newby has announced that Grant Buckner L’13 will oversee the processing of cases, represent the Supreme Court within the state’s judicial branch, and manage employees who support its efficient operations and archiving of records, among other duties.

Grant Buckner L’13 has been named the 17th Clerk of Court for the Supreme Court of North Carolina and will take his oath of office in February 2022.

An Elon Law graduate who built his career working with the state’s most influential jurists has been named to the top executive position for the Supreme Court of North Carolina.

Chief Justice Paul Newby announced in January that Grant Buckner L’13 will assume duties later this winter as the 17th clerk of the highest court in the state.

“Serving the Supreme Court of North Carolina is a great honor and privilege for me,” Buckner said. “The history, the people, and the work inspire me every day. I am so grateful the Court has entrusted me to be its next Clerk of Court, and I look forward to doing my very best in this new role.”

Buckner’s responsibilities will include:

  • Ensuring the efficient processing of cases filed with the Supreme Court and developing a court calendar in coordination with the chief justice
  • Managing evidence related to cases filed with the Supreme Court
  • Maintaining up-to-date personnel policies and providing human resource support related to the office’s 10 current employees
  • Representing the Supreme Court within the judicial branch and to external entities on issues pertaining to the Court and its functions
  • Developing and executing plans for Supreme Court outreach efforts in conjunction with local judges and attorneys for the benefit of students and members of the public
  • Overseeing the operations of oral argument sessions and special ceremonies, the archiving of records, and administrative activities in cases of death penalty sentences

The move keeps Buckner in the same building where he successfully guided the creation and growth of the Supreme Court’s Office of Administrative Counsel.

“We look forward to working with Grant in his new capacity as clerk,” Newby said. “I am confident he will continue to serve the Supreme Court and North Carolinians with the same fervor he has demonstrated in his previous roles.”

Since graduating from Elon Law nearly a decade ago, Buckner has provided legal counsel to the Supreme Court about court rules, drafted rule amendments, published codifications for each of the Court’s 17 rule sets, and maintained the Court’s rules webpage.

He also provided legal counsel to the Supreme Court about pending cases and administrative tasks, reviewed and offered editing advice on opinions, managed the Supreme Court’s termination-of-parental-rights docket, provided staff support to the Chief Justice’s Rules Advisory Commission, and provided legal counsel to and drafted orders for the chief justice in response to emergencies affecting the courts including COVID-19.

Buckner was hired out of Elon Law to clerk for the Hon. Robert N. Hunter Jr. at the North Carolina Court of Appeals and he subsequently clerked for former North Carolina Supreme Court Chief Justice Mark Martin prior to his current position.