A brief timeline of Jeffrey Anderson's life and career

Attorney Jeff Anderson
Attorney Jeff Anderson discusses Catholic Church records concerning sexual misconduct allegations during a new conference at Anderson Law Offices in St Paul, Minn., Thursday, March 25, 2010. A photo of accused priest Rev. Lawrence C. Murphy, who worked at a renowned school for deaf children from 1950 to 1974, appears on the monitor to the left.
AP Photo/Craig Lassig

St. Paul attorney Jeffrey Anderson has undertaken a 30-year legal campaign against sexual abuse in the Catholic Church, and the church leaders he has accused of covering up the scandal. Here's a look at some key moments in his life.

1947: Jeffrey Anderson born in Minneapolis, son of a Dayton's furniture salesman and homemaker.

1965: Graduates from Edina High School and goes to Simpson College in Iowa.

1966: Marries for the first time, converts to Catholicism. Drops out of college. First of six children born a year later.

1971: Graduates from the University of Minnesota.

1975: Earns his law degree from William Mitchell College of Law in St. Paul.

Before you keep reading ...

MPR News is made by Members. Gifts from individuals fuel the programs that you and your neighbors rely on. Donate today to power news, analysis, and community conversations for all.

1979: He and his first wife divorce.

1983: Takes first sexual abuse case in St. Paul.

1987: Marries again, to current wife Julie.

1990: Jury in Anoka County awards more than $3.5 million to Anderson's client, a 24-year-old man who sued Catholic officials saying he was abused by Rev. Thomas Adamson, as a child in Columbia Heights. The jury found the church failed to remove Adamson despite knowing his history of abusing boys.

1991: Files first sex abuse lawsuit ever against a Roman Catholic bishop in the United States.

1992: Takes a high-profile role in the sexual abuse case against former priest James Porter, in Minnesota and Massachusetts.

2002: With help from documents revealed in the Boston clergy abuse scandal, Anderson begins nationwide pursuit of church records to document abuse in other places.

June 2002: Files suit against St. John's Abbey in Collegeville, Minn., on behalf of two men who claimed they were abused by two monks while attending St. John's Preparatory Academy. The suit is settled in October 2002.

August 2006: Files suit on behalf of the family of Daniel O'Connell of Hudson, Wis., who was believed to have been killed by a Roman Catholic priest in 2004, against nearly 200 bishops and other church officials asking them to disclose the names of abusive priests. A judge dismissed the lawsuit in late 2007.

2010: Obtains documents indicating abuse by clergy is occurring internationally, and that Pope Benedict may have played a more active role in handling such cases before he became pope.