Susan Orlansky received her B.A. degree from Reed College and was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. She received her J.D. degree from Harvard University (Magna Cum Laude), where she served as an editor of the Harvard Law Review. Ms. Orlansky is admitted to practice in Alaska and also before the United States District Court for the District of Alaska, the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, and the United States Supreme Court.
Ms. Orlansky's practice focuses on trials and appeals, with an emphasis on complex civil and criminal litigation. Before entering private practice, she served as an Assistant Public Defender (Appellate Supervisor) for the Alaska Public Defender Agency, was the Staff Attorney for the Alaska Appellate Courts, and served as Law Clerk to the Honorable John Dooling, United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York.
Ms. Orlansky has held a variety of professional memberships and appointments, including Attorney Member, Alaska Judicial Council (2002-2008); the Alaska Bar Association (Ethics Committee, 1996-present; Area Discipline Committee 1988-1994; Bar Examiners Committee, 1985-1988; Bar Tutoring Committee, 1990-present); Alaska Supreme Court Appellate Rules Advisory Committee (1985-1992); Alaska Supreme Court Criminal Rules Advisory Committee (1985-1999); Alaska Academy of Trial Lawyers; Association of Trial Lawyers of America; National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers; and the Anchorage Bar Association. Ms. Orlansky was the 2004 recipient of the Alaska Bar Association's Robert Hickerson Award for Public Service and, in 2011, was included among ACLU's "40 Heroes of Constitutional Issues."
Among the legal articles Ms. Orlansky has authored are "Justice Rabinowitz And Personal Freedom: Evolving A Constitutional Framework," 15 Duke-Alaska Law Review 1 (June 1998); "Developments in the Law -- Corporate Crime: Regulating Corporate Behavior Through Criminal Sanctions," 92 Harvard Law Review 114 (1979); "Comment, Affirmative Action -- Regents of the University of California v. Bakke," 92 Harvard Law Review 131 (1978); and "Developments in the Law -- Zoning," 91 Harvard Law Review 1427 (1978).