School of Criminal Justice

Ruth Stevens




Ruth Stevens
Associate Professor

Grand Valley State University            Telephone: (616) 331-7173

School of Criminal Justice                  Fax: (616) 331-7155

253-C DeVos Center                          E-Mail:

401 W. Fulton Street

Grand Rapids, MI 49504



Professor Stevens joined the faculty of the School of Criminal Justice at Grand Valley in fall 2008. She serves as the Coordinator of Grand Valley’s American Bar Association (ABA)-approved Legal Studies program.  During her time at Grand Valley Stevens has received the CCPS Outstanding Teacher Award and the Grand Valley Career Services Outstanding Internship Advocate of the Year awards.  She also serves as faculty advisor for the Mock Trial Club.

Stevens started her career as an attorney with Legal Aid of Western Michigan and continued practicing law as a staff attorney and then managing attorney for UAW-GM Legal Services.  She left UAW-GM to join Davenport University where she served for a number of years as a professor and the director of its paralegal studies program.

Stevens served from 2011 to 2014 on the ABA Paralegals Approval Commission, and, in August 2014 began a three-year term on the ABA Standing Committee on Paralegals.  She is active as a presenter at professional conferences and has also spoken in a number of venues about her research on early women attorneys in Grand Rapids and Michigan.  She also currently serves on the Board of the Greater Grand Rapids Womens’ History Council and on the Libraries and Legal Publications Committee of the State Bar of Michigan.


She has taught Introduction to Law, Family Law, Legal Research and Writing, Civil Litigation, Women and the Law, and Legal Thought at Grand Valley.


B.A. in History, Harvard University, 1975

J.D. University of Michigan, 1980

M.L.I.S. Wayne State University, 2005



  • Stevens, R. S. (2014). Using Google for Legal Research. (7th ed., vol. 93, pp. 56-57). Lansing, MI: State Bar of Michigan.
  • Johnson, B. R., Stevens, R. S. (2013). The regulation and control of bail recovery agents: An exploratory study. Criminal Justice Review, 38(2), 190-206.
  • Stevens, Ruth S, Mullendore, K. B. and Ballard, J. D., Looking for the Law: ACJS Program Certification Standards and Introductory Criminal Justice Textbooks (December 19, 2012). Available at SSRN:
  • Stevens, R. S., Bravender, P. E., Witteveen-Lane, C. (2012). Self-service Holds in Libraries:  Is Patron Privacy Being Sacrificed for Patron Convenience?  Reference & User Services Quarterly, 52(1), 33-44.
  • “Legal Research:  Is there an app for that?”, Michigan Bar Journal, June 2012
  • “Domestic Violence Research Resources for Michigan Attorneys,” Michigan Bar Journal, September 2011
  • “Unbundling of Legal Services:  Selected Resources,” Michigan Bar Journal, September 2010
  • Edwards, J., & Stevens, R. (2010).  Michigan. In American Association of Law Libraries (Ed.), 2009-2010 Updates to the state-by-state report on authentication of online legal resources (pp. 53-56). Retrieved from
  •  “State Primary Law Materials in a Digital Era”, Michigan Bar Journal, July 2009, vol. 88, number 7, pp. 20-25, co-author, Jane Edwards
  • “RSS Feeds:  Worth A Look”, Michigan Bar Journal, January 2009
  • “Legal Information Services to the Public SIS, 100 Law Library Journal 4, 728, Fall 2008, co-author John Cannan.
  • “Print and Online Resources for Factual Investigation in Connection with Real-Estate Transactions”, Michigan Bar Journal, November 2007
  •  “Contract Law Resources”, Michigan Bar Journal, September 2005


Her interests also include research on public access to legal information, the teaching of legal research skills, and historical research on pioneering women in the legal profession.



Page last modified March 23, 2015