Merritt McAlister

Adjunct Professor of Law

B.A., Rice University
J.D., University of Georgia


Sexual Orientation and Gender Law

Biographical Information: 

Merritt McAlister is a partner in King & Spalding’s national appellate practice. Her practice focuses on appellate, statutory and constitutional law; on evaluating legal arguments for eventual appeal; and on advising clients on strategic procedural and substantive issues in complex litigation. Prior to joining King & Spalding, she served as a judicial clerk to Justice John Paul Stevens of the U.S. Supreme Court and to Judge R. Lanier Anderson III of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit. She is an elected member of the American Law Institute and was recently named to Benchmark Litigation’s Under 40 Hot List.

McAlister maintains an active pro bono practice, focusing on appellate-level representation in civil rights cases, including LGBTQ legal issues. She successfully represented a transgender man who was denied a name-change request in an appeal to the Georgia Court of Appeals, and she successfully represented an adoptive parent seeking to vindicate her parental rights as a same-sex parent under Georgia law. For her pro bono work, McAlister was honored as a Woman Making A Mark by Atlanta Magazine in 2015, and she received the Outstanding Service to the Stonewall Community Award from the Stonewall Bar Association of Georgia in 2016.

She earned her undergraduate degree magna cum laude from Rice University and her Juris Doctor summa cum laude from UGA.