Mike Julka practices almost exclusively in the areas of school law and public sector labor/​employment law. He is co-author of A Guide to Nonrenewing Teacher Contracts, and was a contributing author to a multi-volume treatise entitled Education Law. He consistently appears as a guest lecturer at the University of Wisconsin Law School, as well as at numerous seminars sponsored by organizations such as the National Council of School Attorneys, Wisconsin School Attorneys Association, the Wisconsin Association of School Boards, Wisconsin Association of School District Administrators, Wisconsin Association of School Business Officials, Association of Wisconsin School Administrators, the Wisconsin Association of Personnel Administrators, and the Wisconsin Association of School Superintendents Assistants.

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Admitted to Practice

  • Wisconsin State Courts
  • United Stated District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit

Representative Work

  • Lead general counsel for many school districts, Cooperative Education Service Agencies and the Wisconsin Association of School Boards, Inc.
  • Special consultant to Wisconsin Council on Municipal Collective Bargaining
  • Counseled school districts through the labor and employment law changes created by Act 10, including presenting on the topic to national audiences

Honors & Recognition

  • AV® Rating by Martindale-Hubbell® Peer Review Ratings™
  • Named to the National Law Journal's Midwest Top Rated Lawyers for 2021
  • Named to The Best Lawyers in America®, 2007-Present
    • Madison Education “Lawyer of the Year,” 2011, 2014, 2017, 2019, and 2024
    • Madison Employment “Lawyer of the Year,” 2013 and 2015
    • Madison Labor “Lawyer of the Year,” 2020
  • George Tipler Award for Distinguished Service in School Law, 2008
  • Named to the Wisconsin Super Lawyers® list, 2007-2020
  • Wisconsin Athletic Service Award, Wisconsin Athletic Directors Association, 2016
  • Outstanding Educator Award, Wisconsin Association of School District Administrators, 2015
  • Fond du Lac/Goodrich High School's Distinguished Alumni, Fond du Lac School District, 2014

See our disclaimer regarding third-party awards.

Presentations, Publications, & Contributions

  • Author, "Wisconsin School News Legal Comment," Wisconsin Association of School Boards, Inc., monthly since the 1970s
  • Author, "Legal Notes Quarterly," Wisconsin Association of School Boards, Inc., 1990-2011
  • Author, Published selected topics in The Administrator magazine
  • Primary Author, "A Guide To Nonrenewing Teacher Contracts," Wisconsin Association of School Boards, Inc.
  • Contributing Author, multi-volume treatise entitled Education Law
  • Presenter, various school district administrator and school board organizations, as well as to school district clients, approximately 30 times per year

Community Involvement & Board Memberships

  • Dane County Bar Association
    • Secretary, 1987-1988
    • President, 1989-1990
  • Wisconsin School Attorneys Association
    • Board of Directors, 1988-1992
    • President, 1991-1992
  • National Council of School Attorneys
    • Board of Directors, 2015-2019
    • Leadership Development Committee, Former Chair

    • Labor Relations Committee, Former Chair
  • Ripon College Alumni Association Board of Directors
  • Volunteer high school basketball coach
  • Volunteer high school tutor
  • Former neighborhood association officer
  • Former youth sports coach
  • Lead volunteer in neighborhood association advocacy for on-leash dogs in city parks

Professional Memberships

  • American Bar Association
  • State Bar of Wisconsin
  • Dane County Bar Association
  • Wisconsin School Attorneys Association
  • National Council of School Attorneys, State Association Outside Counsel Committee, Labor Relations Committee
  • Wisconsin Public Employer Labor Relations Association
  • National Public Employer Labor Relations Association


  • J.D., cum laude, University of Wisconsin – Madison, 1976
    • Order of the Coif
  • B.A., magna cum laude, Mathematics with a minor in Physics, Ripon College, 1971
    • Phi Beta Kappa
    • Dean’s Award (awarded to outstanding senior)
    • Peterson Prize Scholarship (awarded to outstanding Junior)
    • Sigma Pi Sigma Physics Honor Society

Michael’s Latest Writing & Presentations