Faculty News

Students Attend Equal Justice Works Conference and Career Fair

On October 24th and 25th a group of ten students from the University of Louisville Brandeis School of Law attended the Equal Justice Works Conference and Career Fair in Washington, DC.  Ten students, seven third-years and three second-years ventured to the nation’s capital in order to explore Public Interest opportunities. This was the first time that any of our students attended.

Assistant Dean for Career Services/Public Service, Kathy Urbach, got the ball rolling in September and encouraged students who were interested in attending the conference to meet with her to have their resume reviewed.  There was also an application process to be completed.

Funding for travel and lodging came from two sources.  Some of the money used was from the Career Services budget in lieu of other travel expenses.  Victor Revill, Student Bar Association President, obtained funds from University of Louisville’s Student Government Association.  One student even used frequent flyer points to get to the conference.

A meeting was held prior to the conference to provide information about what students could expect, how they should approach the employers at Table Talk, networking, workshops and other related topics.  Also, students outlined plans of action which gave fellow students ideas of how to assist one another.

Some of the students had specific goals.  Jessica Kingley, a third-year student, knew that she wanted to meet with the New York District County Attorney’s Office as well as Public Service people from New York City and turn it into a job.  Guion Johnstone, a second-year student, attended with four actual interviews scheduled.  Rexena Napier and Melissa McHendrix, both third-year students and both interested in animal law, knew that there wouldn’t be any employers dedicated to solely animal law, but viewed the conference as a way to learn about other related opportunities.  Victor Revill, a third-year student and president of the SBA, knew ahead of time that his approximately “five minute introduction speech” needed to be well-rehearsed and fine tuned for each prospective employer. 

All of the students were committed to public service work prior to attending the conference.  Jamie Izlar, a second-year student, worked in a public interest position before attending law school.  Her work involved working with indigent, undocumented immigrants.  Colleen Hagan, a third-year student said that the rewarding part of going to such a big conference with so many attendees is that the students all are like-minded and want to be part of a greater good.  Students felt encouraged to see so many employers who focus on public service.

Besides the career fair and Table Talk sessions, students attended workshops, sessions, discussions and had the privilege of hearing Ralph Nader speak.  Samantha Thomas, a second-year student, attended a government workshop which supplied her with tips (call specific government agencies, keep applying and find a niche).  Jamie Izlar attended a resume building session which she found extremely helpful and also attended several discussions where she learned which employers will pay for law school student loans.  Rexena Napier attended a workshop that gave her a lot of ideas including applying for grants.

All of the students who attended felt it was worthwhile to attend and felt a deeper sense of commitment to public service.  Duffy Trager came away with connections and a lot of business cards that he intends to follow up with.  Samantha Thomas plans to capitalize on what she observed at the conference and use it to shape what she does in law school.  Melissa McHendrix said that the most worthwhile aspect of the conference for her was meeting other students and discussing what organizations are non-profit and in the public sector.

The three second-year students are looking forward to returning to the Equal Justice Works Conference and Career Fair next year.  This is a great experience for our students and an opportunity for them to represent the law school.  The University of Louisville Brandeis School of Law would like for all students interested in attending the conference in 2010 to have the opportunity to do so.

~Debra Reh, Program Assistant for the Office of Career Services

 

     
    

 

Justice Brandeis' 153rd Birthday Celebration

Brandeis 153rd Birthday Party
For a list of Brandeis quotes, follow our tweets @LouisvilleLaw.
 
The Brandeis Birthday Stamp Commemoration was a great success!  All 153 special envelopes were sold.
 
The success of the day was due to many at the law school. Appreciation goes to:
Les Abramson, Jim Becker, Peggy Bratcher, Scott Campbell, Dean Chen, Joe Leitsch, Kurt Metzmeier, Marilyn Peters, Virginia Smith, Vickie Tencer, Becky Wenning, Becky Wimberg and students Jenna diFrancisco, Lauren Bean, and Jessica Campbell and also to the students in the Animal Law Organization for selling doughnuts and coffee.

~Professor Laura Rothstein

Justice Louis D. Brandeis' Special Collection

One of the law library's most prized collections is the Papers of Louis Dembitz Brandeis. It is divided into ten topical series and includes drafts of speeches, legal documents, newspaper clippings, scrapbooks, and family portraits and letters dating as early as 1810. Series VII, Miscellaneous contains family correspondence, including birthday cards, telegrams, and a few letters written in German that remain untranslated.

Scott Campbell is the curator of the Louis D. Brandeis Special Collection, which has been visited by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and biographer Melvin Urofsky. The law library hopes to digitize the microfilm and printed materials some day to add to its digital collection.

The law library also contains several books about Justice Brandeis, including the recently published biography Louis D. Brandeis: A Life (KF8745.B67 U749 2009) and Biographical Encyclopedia of the Supreme Court: The Lives and Legal Philosophies of the Justices (KF 8744 .B56 2006), both by Melvin I. Urofsky. Copies of Brandeis at 150: the Louisville Perspective (KF8745 .B67 B671 2006) are available for purchase in the Resource Center across from room 275. These are just a few of the many items that can be found by searching our online catalog, Minerva.

Brandeis Stamp Commemorates Justice's Birthday

The U.S. Postal Service and the University of Louisville Brandeis School of Law will honor the city’s native son, Louis D. Brandeis, on what would have been his 153rd birthday.

Brandeis is featured on a new set of commemorative stamps, which also includes U.S. Supreme Court associate justices Joseph Story, Felix Frankfurter and William J. Brennan Jr. Nationally-known graphic designer Ethel Kessler worked with Lisa Catalone-Castro and Rodolfo Castro on the inspired design of the souvenir sheet that incorporates images of the Supreme Court building and a detail from the first page of the United States Constitution.

The presentation will be held at 10 AM on Friday, November 13. Prior to the event, Professor and Distinguished University Scholar Laura Rothstein will be giving an overview of Brandeis with an emphasis on property issues, his distinguished career and his connection to Louisville. The lecture begins at 9 AM and the public is welcome.  In addition to Rothstein, Congressman John Yarmuth, Louisville Postmaster Richard Curtsinger, and Dean Chen will present.

“It is an honor to remember such a prominent member of the Louisville community and to celebrate the many contributions he made for our nation,” said Curtsinger.

Louis Brandeis was the associate justice most responsible for helping the Supreme Court shape the tools it needed to interpret the Constitution in light of the sociological and economic conditions of the 20th century. “If we would guide by the light of reason,” he once exhorted his colleagues, “we must let our minds be bold.” A progressive, and champion of reform, Brandeis devoted his life to social justice.

“Louisville can be proud that Justice Brandeis is so connected to our community and that the values he is known for had their roots here,” said Rothstein.
 
“The principles and philosophies Brandeis is known for – including rights to privacy, free speech, curtailing big government and big business, balancing regulation with free enterprise – are timely today,” she added. “It is appropriate that his enormous contributions are recognized on this set of commemorative stamps.”

To mark the event, 153 commemorative envelopes with a special postmark — both designed by artist Leslie Friesen — will be available for sale. The envelope features a photo of the Brandeis School of Law as well as one of Brandeis’ famous quotes, “Knowledge is essential to understanding & understanding should precede judging.” The cancellation features a Corinthian capital and the numerals 153 to mark his 153rd birthday. It also features the Louis D. Brandeis commemorative stamp. Each envelope is numbered by the artist. The artist will also be on hand to sign the limited edition artwork. The envelopes are $5.

USPS stamp collection featuring Justice Brandeis

The Courier-Journal Celebrates Brandeis' Legacy

Professor Laura Rothstein's review of the latest Brandeis biography, Louis D. Brandeis: A Life, by Melvin I. Urofsky was featured in the Courier-Journal this past Sunday. Urofksy is a Brandeis scholar and a professor of law and public policy at Virginia Commonwealth University. Urofsky's Brandeis biography was listed among the New York Times "100 Notable Books of 2009".

"Urofsky's rich and detailed biography often includes a specific reference to a current issue and analyzes it from a Brandeis perspective. He emphasizes how Brandeis dissents have almost all become the prevailing view of the law today, a testament to his prophetic abilities and his enduring values. Even without the author's highlighting, the reader is frequently reminded in reading the book of how much of Brandeis' life work is relevant today." ~Laura Rothstein

The CJ featured a story by Melvin I. Urofsky himself, Louis Brandeis' Louisville: Justice was always a son of Kentucky that includes a brief overview of Brandeis' life and accomplishments and several photos from the law library's collection.

Sunday's paper also includes an editorial by Sam Upshaw, Jr. that draws comparisons to Brandeis' and Obama's career paths and portrays them both as change agents.


The law school will celebrate Brandeis' birthday and commemorative stamp unveiling on Friday, Nov. 13 at 10 AM. The public is welcome to attend.

News features: 

 

Celebrate Christie Floyd's Life

Christie Floyd, formerly our Academic Success Director, passed away Wednesday October 21, after an illness.  Grief counseling is available at the Counseling Center. Their number is (502) 852-6585.  Christie will be missed by all of us.

Those wishing to celebrate Christie's life and work are invited to attend an open visitation to be held at Saint Mark's Episcopal Church at 2822 Frankfort Ave. (map) from 4-8 PM on Friday, October 30, 2009. A private ceremony will be held at Cave Hill Cemetery the following morning.

 

Here is a brief biography:

Christie graduated from the University of Louisville Brandeis School of Law in 2001. While there, she served as Editor-in-Chief of the Brandeis Law Journal.  Her Student Note, "Admissibility of Prior Acts Evidence in Sexual Assault and Child Molestation Cases in Kentucky: A Proposed Solution That Recognizes Cultural Context," 38 Brandeis L.J. 133, was published in 1999.  She graduated magna cum laude and was named Oustanding Graduate of 2001 by the National Women Lawyers' Association. She accomplished all of this while working full-time, attending classes in the evening and raising a family.


Prior to joining U of L, Christie practiced as an Assistant Commonwealth's Attorney and Deputy Division Chief of the Commonwealth Attorney's Office Domestic Violence/Child Abuse Unit.  In that capacity, she also served on the Kentucky Sex Offender Risk Assessment Advisory Board and Kentucky Sex Offender Management Task Force.  Christie was instrumental in founding Kentucky's first child advocacy center in 1991 and participated in numerous groups targeting legislative and policy changes in areas of domestic violence and child abuse.  She also played a significant role in training new prosecutors and police officers.  

Source: Law School Academic Support Blog, friends and colleagues


Those wishing to celebrate Christie's life and work are invited to attend an open visitation to be held at Saint Mark's Episcopal Church, 2822 Frankfort Ave., from 4-8 p.m. Friday October 30, 2009. A private ceremony will be held at Cave Hill Cemetery the following morning. 

Details and guestbook are available at Courier-Journal.com.

Louisville Law Dining Guide

The Louisville Law Dining Guide contains reviews of the law school community's favorite dining establishments in the city and sourrounding area. It's by no means exhaustive, but it is informative, especially for those of you that are new to town.

The Student Bar Association's favorites include: Third Avenue Café, J. Alexanders, Ramsi's Café On the World, Spinelli's Pizzeria, El Mundo and the Irish Rover. Dean Chen, Michael Ben-Avraham, Scott Campbell and Professors Knowles and Hilyerd each recommend the Santa Fe Grill.

See the dining guide for more reviews, details and directions. 

 

 

Chili Cook-off is a Success!

Congratulations to Jim Becker! His entry, "Melinda Becker's Deer Chili", won for the second consecutive year. Following by just a 1/2 vote, was Becky Wimberg's award-winning southwest chili, aka "Becky's Kickin' Chicken Chili".

Thanks so much to all who purchased a meal! A grand total of $317, which will be split among the five charities of the UofL Cares campaign, was raised.

Other tasty entries included:

  • Kathy Bean's "Cleveland Art Museum Tomato Basil Soup" and her husband's "Bombay Bob's Vegan Red Lentil Soup"
  • Tom Blackburn's "Turkey Chili"
  • Becky Wenning's "Homemade Beef Stew"
  • Vickie & Leslie Tencers' homemade "Cream of Mushroom Soup"
  • Kimberly Ballard's "Vegetarian Chili with Whole Wheat Pasta"

Many thanks to the following individuals who also contributed: Charlene Taylor, Janet Sullivan, Rita Siegwald, Debra Reh, Peggy Bratcher, Jina Scinta, Brandon Hamilton, Brenda Hill, Ariana Levinson, Grace Giesel, Barbara Thompson, Jodi Duce, Kathy Urbach, and Angela Beverly.

If you haven't already made a pledge, we hope you'll do so now.  To make a pledge on-line or to print out a form to contribute by mail, visit UofL Cares.  

Kimberly Ballard at Chili Cook-off  Becky Wimberg at Chili Cook-off

Trager Wins Pirtle-Washer Oral Advocacy Competition

Congratulations to Duffy Trager, winner of the 2009 Pirtle-Washer Oral Advocacy Competition!

2009 Pirtle-Washer Participants

The semifinal and final rounds were held on Friday, October 9th in the Allen Courtroom.

Here’s the schedule:

9 AM, Semifinal Round

  • Appellant: Duffy Trager
  • Appellee: Algeria Ford

10:30 AM, Semifinal Round
  • Appellant: Eric Lowe
  • Appellee: Barry Dunn
Semifinalists
 

Duffy B. Trager is a native of Louisville.  He earned his B.A. in Political Science and Religious Studies from Western Kentucky University in 2006.  In law school, he competed on the 2008 National Moot Court Team.  He is currently Constitutional Law Editor of the Journal of Law and Education, founder and Vice President of the International Law Society and a Marshall - Brennan Fellow.  In the summer of 2009, he was awarded an IOLTA Fellowship with Catholic Charities Immigration Legal Services.  Duffy has recently become an avid runner.

Algeria Ford
is a third year law student and the winner of last year’s Pirtle-Washer competition.  He has a range of interests including criminal and civil litigation, intellectual property law, and environmental law.  He would like to thank his wife for her continued support.

Eric Lowe
is from Mt. Washington, Kentucky, but currently lives in the Louisville area.  He completed his undergraduate studies at the University of the Cumberlands, in Williamsburg, Kentucky, where he played varsity football and competed in Parliamentary Debate.  Throughout his career at the Cumberlands, he studied in the areas of Communication and Political Science.  Currently, he is a second year evening student and has been employed full time throughout his law school career at Bullitt Central High School.  At the law school he participates in various programs and activities such as: University of Louisville Law Review, Moot Court Board, Student Bar Association, and as a member of the Health Law Moot Court Team.  He is honored to have been selected to compete in the Pirtle Washer finals and would like to wish all if his fellow competitors congratulations and best wishes.

Barry Dunn
is a Columbia, Kentucky, native who received his undergraduate education at Lindsey Wilson College before obtaining an M.A. in political science from the University of Cincinnati.  Mr. Dunn came to law school after teaching eighth grade social studies.  He currently serves as President of the Moot Court Board and Notes Editor for the University of Louisville Law Review.  Mr. Dunn is also a member of the school's National Moot Court Competition team.  Mr. Dunn has worked for the law firms Stoll Keenon Ogden and Wyatt, Tarrant & Combs.  After law school, he hopes to clerk for a federal judge for one year before practicing litigation.


Presiding Judges


Each semifinal round was judged by the following three judge panel:


Appellant, Duffy Trager, and Appellee, Barry Dunn, advanced to the final round at 1 PM, which was judged by the following:


Remembering Lively Wilson

Lively Wilson was an admired and respected member of the legal profession who made a significant impact on the judicial system in Southern Indiana and Kentucky.  A native of Kentucky and a Harvard Law School graduate, he was a role model and mentor to an entire generation of lawyers in the region. 
 
As a member of the Stites & Harbison firm in Louisville since 1953, Lively Wilson had a national reputation for his commitment to civility and professionalism by both civil and criminal trial lawyers.  He spoke about the importance of professionalism when he delivered the law school’s 2005 commencement address. 

His reflections about his practice in Kentucky are included in “Kentucky Lawyers Speak:  Oral History from Those Who Lived It,” the recently published book of interviews with seventy-four Kentucky lawyers.  In 1995, Lively Wilson and Dean Donald Burnett founded the Louis D. Brandeis Inns of Court. 

As a tribute to his example, in 2003 Edward H. Stopher, and the firm of Boehl Stopher & Graves and the Stites & Harbison firm, through the leadership of T. Kennedy Helm III, provided support to create the Lively M. Wilson Oral Advocacy Program.  The fund provided for furnishing the Moot Court office and establishing an endowment to fund participation in oral advocacy competitions.  Other major support came from Ronald E. Christian ’83 and the estate of Arnold Robinson ’61.

On July 22, 2009, Lively Wilson lost his valiant three-year battle with cancer.  Kennedy Helm’s email to the community noted that “Lively’s most recent gift to us was the example of optimism, grace and dignity he exhibited every day that he fought his illness.”