The Hillman Advocacy Program

2022 Program Registration Now Open:

The Hillman Advocacy Program is returning for its fortieth year in 2022.  It will take place in Grand Rapids, Michigan, from January 19 through 21, 2022.

Please note: All participants in the 2022 Hillman Advocacy Program must be fully vaccinated and show proof of vaccination at registration on January 19, 2022.


The Hillman Advocacy Program is a learn-by-doing seminar patterned after well-known techniques developed by the National Institute of Trial Advocacy (NITA). It gives over 60 attorneys a unique opportunity to develop courtroom skills under the guidance of some of Michigan’s top trial lawyers – all of whom volunteer their time. The program keeps the number of participants low to maintain a 3-to-1 student to teacher ratio.

The West Michigan Chapter of the Federal Bar Association, together with the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan, administers and supports the Hillman Advocacy Program. Although it is similar in format and approach to other trial practice workshops, no other program involves the entire bench of a federal district court dedicating its full attention, courtrooms, and facilities for 2 ½ days to the mission of teaching and improving trial skills.

For more information on Hillman, please visit its website at