J. D. Merris was born and raised in Iowa. He received his law degree from the University of Iowa in 1977 and moved to Boise in 1979. He was in private practice in Iowa before the move to Boise and continued in private practice in Boise until 1984 when he resumed a full time military career with the Idaho Air National Guard. J.D. returned to the Boise legal community in 1998 after he retired from the military. His practice has concentrated on criminal defense and representing persons who have been injured or who have commercial disputes.
J. D. earned his undergraduate degree in Aerospace Engineering from Iowa State University. He also has a master’s degree from the U.S. Naval War College. J. D. retired as an Air Force officer with over 4000 hours of flying time in fighter aircraft which included combat missions in Vietnam and in Iraq. More than half of his military flying experience was as an instructor pilot.
J. D. is known for his ability to reduce his clients' anxiety and to help them through the stresses of litigation. He has been involved in numerous trials and has been acknowledged as an outstanding trial lawyer. He is a member of National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and the Idaho Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers.
Admitted to the Iowa State Bar and Iowa Federal District Courts (1978); Idaho State Bar and Idaho Federal District Court (1979); and the United States Office of Patents and Trademarks (1983) and the Federal Appeals Court for the 9th Circuit.
Iowa State University (B.S. with honors 1967); University of Iowa (J.D. with honors, 1977); United States Naval War College (M.A., 1995).