Judge Michael Fitzpatrick has more than 30 years of legal and judicial experience

Judge Michael Fitzpatrick has more than 30 years of legal and judicial experience.


Judge Fitzpatrick is a candidate for an open seat on the Wisconsin Court of Appeals, District Four. The non-partisan election will be held in April 2017.

Elected twice as a Judge in Rock County, Judge Fitzpatrick presides over civil, family law, and criminal cases. He has also served on the Wisconsin Court of Appeals by special assignment through the Judicial Exchange Program. Judge Fitzpatrick has been elected by Wisconsin’s Judges to the Wisconsin Judicial Council, the Wisconsin Civil Jury Instruction Committee, and the Board of Directors of the Wisconsin Trial Judges Association.

Judge Fitzpatrick will serve on the faculty for the Wisconsin Judicial College. He frequently conducts seminars for Judges and attorneys, including three-day workshops on evidence for Judges.

Prior to taking the bench, Judge Fitzpatrick was an attorney at Brennan, Steil & Basting, S.C. in Janesville where he chaired the Litigation Practice Group and handled intellectual property disputes and product liability cases in federal and state courts throughout Wisconsin and the United States.

While in private practice, he earned the top “AV” rating for legal acumen and ethics from the legal rating service Martindale-Hubbell and was thrice named one of Wisconsin’s “Super Lawyers” in Business Litigation by Milwaukee Magazine.

Judge Fitzpatrick is active in both the broader community and the legal profession. His service includes:

Judge Fitzpatrick and his wife Sharon

Judge Fitzpatrick and his wife Sharon

  • Member, Wisconsin Judicial Council
  • Member, Civil Jury Instruction Committee
  • Member, Wisconsin Judicial College Faculty
  • Board of Directors, Wisconsin Trial Judges Association
  • Fellow, American Bar Foundation
  • Member, Wisconsin Judicial Education Committee (2009-2013)
  • Member, Wisconsin State Bar Committee on Professional Ethics (2007-2013)
  • Member, City of Janesville Police and Fire Commission (2004-2008)
  • Board of Directors, Wisconsin Equal Justice Fund (2001-2008)
  • Board of Directors, The University of Wisconsin-Rock County Foundation (2001-2009)

Judge Fitzpatrick earned his law degree from Drake University (1984). Immediately after graduation he served for a year as the law clerk to the Honorable R. James Groh, U.S. Magistrate Judge for the Western District of Wisconsin. Judge Fitzpatrick and his wife Sharon reside in Janesville.