Gerald Zerkin received his B.A. from Brandeis University (1971), his M.A. from the University of Virginia (1976) and his J.D. from Boston College Law School (1976). After two years as a legal aid staff attorney in Richmond, Virginia, he went into private practice, specializing in civil and constitutional rights, criminal defense and capital post-conviction litigation. In October, 2001, he joined the newly established Office of the Federal Public Defender for the Eastern District of Virginia as senior litigator. He has served as counsel in numerous federal death penalty cases and lectures often on death penalty issues. He is a fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers.