Professor Cheyanna Jaffke Attends U.S. Tax Court Judicial Conference
June 8, 2015
Professor Cheyanna Jaffke recently returned from the U.S. Tax Court Judicial Conference at Duke University. Attendance at the conference is by invitation only and Professor Jaffke was invited by the Chief Judge of the U.S. Tax Court, Michael Thornton. She had breakfast with Judge Eric G. Bruggink, senior judge on the United States Court of Federal Claims in Washington, DC, met and spoke with Justice Antonin Scalia, and had dinner with Judge Robert A. Wherry, Jr., senior judge of the U.S. Tax Court.
Professor Jennifer Koh’s Article Cited Extensively by United States Supreme Court in Mellouli Decision
June 1, 2015
The United States Supreme Court cited and quoted Professor Jennifer Koh in its majority opinion in Mellouli v. Lynch, an important case involving the immigration consequences of crime. In Mellouli, the Court held in a 7-2 opinion that a lawful permanent resident’s conviction for possession of drug paraphernalia under Kansas law (in this case, involving four unidentified pills contained in a sock) did not trigger deportation. The majority opinion, written by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, cited and quoted Professor Koh’s law review article, “The Whole Better Than the Sum: A Case for the Categorical Approach to Determining the Immigration Consequences of Crime,” 26 Geo. Immigr. L. J. 257 (2012) extensively to support the contention that the “categorical approach” – a methodology used by adjudicators to determine whether a conviction should trigger adverse immigration consequences — “is suited to the realities of the system.” (Slip op. at 7). Earlier this year, Professor Koh weighed in with her thoughts on the Mellouli case in an online symposium at crimmigration.com.
Professor Jennifer Koh to Join Board of Editors of Clinical Law Review
May 28, 2015
The Clinical Law Review has announced that Professor Jennifer Koh will join its Board of Editors in January 2016. The Clinical Law Review is a semi-annual peer-edited journal devoted to issues of lawyering theory and clinical legal education, and is jointly sponsored by the Association of American Law Schools (AALS), the Clinical Legal Education Association (CLEA), and New York University School of Law. Members of the Board of Editors serve for a term of 6 years, and work with authors publishing in the Clinical Law Review to edit articles as well as serve as small group leaders in the journal’s annual writers’ workshop.
Adjunct Professor Neil Pedersen Presents for California Young Lawyers Division Annual Practical Skills Training Symposium
May 27, 2015
Adjunct Professor Neil Pedersen presented at the State Bar offices in Los Angeles on May 22 on the topic of Making Good Client Choices. He was asked to present as part of the California Young Lawyers Division Annual Practical Skills Training Symposium, a two-day training program for young lawyers. The presentation included a series of video clips and discussion focused on heading off practice problems by identifying potential client issues in the intake process.
Professor Glenn Koppel Attends Meeting of the American Law Institute
May 22, 2015
Professor Glenn Koppel just returned from the 92nd Annual Meeting of the American Law Institute in Washington, D.C. Professor Koppel, elected to the ALI in 2007, is a member of the Members Consultative Group to the Restatement of the Law Fourth The Foreign Relations Law of the United States. He was also one of eight bloggers who posted comments on the ALI’s Annual Meeting Blog about events at the 2015 Annual Meeting. Among the speakers this year were Margaret Marshall who, as Chief Justice of the Massachusetts Supreme Court, wrote the 2003 decision in Goodridge v. Department of Public Health that declared that the Massachusetts constitution does not permit the state to deny citizens the right to same-sex marriage, and James Comey, Director of the FBI, who presented some of the challenges facing the FBI in the digital age.
Professor Elizabeth Jones’ Article Highlighted in Wall Street Journal’s Law Blog
May 18, 2015
Professor Elizabeth Jones’ article, “The Good and (Breaking) Bad of Deceptive Police Practices,” has been highlighted in The Wall Street Journal’s Law Blog. The post notes that the New Mexico Law Review has dedicated a special issue to the critically acclaimed television show Breaking Bad, mentions Western State College of Law, and states that Professor Jones’ article “discusses the possible association between Breaking Bad’s depiction of investigative strategic police deception and the Department of Justice’s recent finding of a ‘pattern or practice of excessive force’ by some Albuquerque Police Department officers.” The post includes a link to her article. Covered by lead writer Jacob Gershman, the Law Blog focuses on law and business, the business of law, looks at industry news and legal trends, and includes contributions from reporters and editors at The Wall Street Journal and Dow Jones Newswires.
The Hollywood Reporter
has named David Fox (Class of 1985), to its Power Lawyer 2015 list of Hollywood's Top 100 Lawyers.
May 14, 2015
David Fox is a partner at Myman Greenspan Fineman Fox Rosenberg & Light and represents a number of clients who had a spectacular year, including ‘Furious 7’ director, James Wan; ‘The Lego Movie’ producer, Dan Lin; and ‘Grey's Anatomy’ producers Tony Phelan and Joan Rater. Fox helped producer Dan Lin launch his Lego Movie empire and helped Tony Phelan and Joan Rater with Grey's Anatomy secure an overall deal at CBS.
Professor Jennifer Koh Presents at AALS Clinical Conference
May 12, 2015
Professor Jennifer Koh presented at the American Association of Law Schools (AALS) Clinical Conference on “The New Normal: Clinical Education at the Intersection of Immigration and Criminal Law,” on May 5. The concurrent session brought together clinical law professors with criminal and immigration law backgrounds to discuss how law school clinics are reflecting the merger of the criminal and immigration law fields. In her comments, Professor Koh discussed the Western State College of Law Immigration Clinic’s work involving noncitizens facing removal and detention due to prior convictions. She also described the Clinic’s collaboration with the juvenile division of the Orange County Public Defender’s Office, in which the Clinic provides immigration consultations to youth facing juvenile adjudications in Orange County.
Professor Robert Molko Publishes on Unintended Creation of Statute of Limitations for Murder
May 11, 2015
Professor Robert Molko’s article, “The Law of Unintended Consequences Strikes Again: Does Murder Have a Statute of Limitations Now? The Sky Will Fall Unless the Supreme Court Changes Its Interpretation of the Right of Confrontation,” just published in the Drake Law Review, argues that The Supreme Court’s latest interpretation of the Sixth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution will lead to the creation of a statute of limitations tied to the life of the autopsy pathologist, because it will not be possible to prove the cause of death in murders once the pathologist dies, or is otherwise legally unavailable. 63 Drake L. Rev. 527 (2015). The article further argues that the Court will have to significantly change its interpretation in order to avoid this unintended consequence that would be contrary to the long-held common law doctrine that no statute of limitations exists for murder.
Professor Stacey Sobel Publishes on Sexual Orientation Discrimination Claims
May 4, 2015
Professor Stacey Sobel’s article, “When Windsor Isn’t Enough: Why the Court Must Clarify Equal Protection Analysis for Sexual Orientation Classifications,” has been published in the Cornell Journal of Law and Public Policy. This article explores why the Supreme Court needs to provide guidance for courts hearing sexual orientation discrimination claims under the federal Equal Protection Clause and the differing standards of review applied by courts in sexual orientation-related cases in the past. Professor Sobel’s article concludes that sexual orientation classifications merit heightened scrutiny analysis which would provide fairness, predictability and protection for lesbian, gay and bisexual people.
Professor Merkel Serves as Braun Prize Judge
May 1, 2015
Professor Philip L. Merkel served as judge for this year’s Jerome I. Braun Prize in Western Legal History competition. The Braun Prize is awarded annually for the best unpublished manuscript on the history of the North American West. As judge, Professor Merkel read and evaluated manuscripts submitted by historians and legal scholars. The winning submission will be published in a future issue of Western Legal History, a publication of the Ninth Judicial Circuit Historical Society.
Student receives first annual PILF public interest scholarship
April 30, 2015
Second year student, Asya Ovsepyan, received the first annual Public Interest Law Foundation (PILF) public interest scholarship, awarded on Thursday, April 23. The $2,000 stipend was the result of the organization’s April 26 fundraiser held on campus in the Moot Court Room. Students, faculty and alumni bid on auction items, donated by the faculty and staff as well as a few local businesses, which eventually netted $2,000 for the stipend.
The purpose of the stipend is to provide funds to a student desiring to take on a summer internship in the area of public interest. Asya will be interning with the Orange County Public Defender’s office during the summer of 2015.
“I would like to thank Professor Sobel and Professor Koh for choosing me as the first ever recipient of the $2,000 stipend to financially assist me while I journey on into a world I love the most: helping others. No matter where I am in my life, I always have something I can give. Giving back to society has been one of my most rewarding experiences to date.” - Asya Ovsepyan
PILF looks forward to continuing the stipend auction and program as annual events.
Professor Kevin Mohr Participates on State Bar Panel to Revise Rules of Professional Conduct
April 29, 2015
Professor Kevin Mohr participated on a panel at the State Bar of California Ethics Symposium in San Diego on April 25 that discussed the current project to revise the California Rules of Professional Conduct, which are the principal source of lawyer regulation in California. Professor Mohr serves as the Reporter for the current Rules Revision Commission that has been tasked with reviewing and revising the Rules. It is a position he also held with the previous Commission.
Immigrants’ Rights Fellow Sabrina Rivera Speaks on Immigration Panel
April 28, 2015
Immigrants’ Rights Fellow Sabrina Rivera spoke at an Immigration Forum sponsored by the UC Irvine Dreamer Center and UCI School of Law on April 27. During her remarks, she described the current state of litigation regarding President Obama’s immigration initiative involving Deferred Action for Parental Accountability (DAPA) and also described the Western State College of Law Immigration Clinic’s community outreach and education work in Orange County related to DAPA. She spoke also about U visas for immigrant victims of crime. Her co-panelists were Eric Dominguez, Esq., associate at the immigration law firm Hirson & Partners, and Jacqueline Dan, staff attorney at Advancing Justice.
Professor Elizabeth N. Jones Publishes “Breaking Bad” Article in New Mexico Law Review
April 17, 2015
Professor Elizabeth N. Jones was invited to write for the New Mexico Law Review’s special issue dedicated to the critically acclaimed television show, Breaking Bad. Her article, “The Good and (Breaking) Bad of Deceptive Police Practices,” explores a potential association between Breaking Bad’s depiction of investigative strategic police deception and the Department of Justice’s recent finding of a “pattern or practice of excessive force” by the Albuquerque Police Department.
Professor Eunice Park Publishes on Legal Writing Courses Bridging Doctrine and Skill
April 16, 2015
Professor Eunice Park’s article on legal writing courses as a bridge between doctrine and skill has been published in The Second Draft, the official publication of The Legal Writing Institute. In the Spring 2015 issue, Professor Park discusses ways in which the substance and pedagogy of legal writing courses, in this era of legal education reform, merges the analytical and practical.
Adjunct Professor Carolyn Dillinger has created JumpStart Genius,
an online software program to help law students and attorneys design, start, and manage their law firms. Professor Dillinger collaborated with a team of experts who provided content for the program, including Adjunct Professor Neil Pedersen and Professor Kevin Mohr. JumpStart Genius has been approved as a member benefit for the California State Bar Section on Law Practice Management and Technology.
Neil Gotanda Presents on “Comparative Racialization: Racial Genealogies and the Black-White Paradigm”
April 6, 2015
Professor Neil Gotanda presented his work-in-progress, “Comparative Racialization: Racial Genealogies and the Black-White Paradigm,” at the Western State College of Law Brown-Bag Series on March 24 and at the Texas A&M University School of Law Faculty Speaker Series on April 1.
Paul Smith Coaches Students for Environmental Law Negotiation Competition
April 3, 2015
Adjunct Professor Paul Smith coached students Emma Popiolkowsk and Yumi Choe for the 16th annual State Bar Environmental Law Negotiation Competition, where they placed 7th out of 26 teams. The competition was held at Golden Gate Law School on March 13.
Tracie Porter Publishes, Serves as Delegate at Global Law Summit, and Organizes Writers’ Guild at NBA Conference
April 2, 2015
Alumnus Professor Tracie Porter’s two most recent articles are appearing in the spring issues of the Arkansas Law Review and the Akron Law Review, entitled, The School-to-Prison Pipeline: The Business Side of Incarcerating, Not Educating, Students in Public Schools, 68 Ark. L. Rev. 55 (2015) and The Quagmire of Mortgage Short Sale Transactions Under Current Homeownership Tax Policy in a Time of Crisis, __ Akron L. Rev. __ (forthcoming 2015). She also wrote short articles for both the National Bar Association’s Magazine, entitled, The Great Loss of Wealth for African Americans, 19 Nat’l Bar Assn. Mag. 16 (Dec. 2014), and the ABA Section of International Law’s Year in Review, entitled, New Qualified Mortgage Regulations in the United States (forthcoming Spring 2015).
In February, Professor Porter was sponsored by the UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) of Los Angeles to serve as an International Delegate at the Global Law Summit in London. She spoke at the UKTI Global Marketplace on current developments for practicing in the U.S. market for international lawyers, which included being featured as Director of the WSCL Business Law Center in the UKTI Global Market publication distributed at the Summit. Over 2,300 delegates from around the world attended the Summit, including U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder.
More recently, Professor Porter also organized a Writer’s Guild at the National Bar Association’s (NBA) Mid-Year Conference and Gertrude Rush Awards Dinner in St. Louis. Held in March, the panel was facilitated by NBA President Pamela J. Meanes of Thompson Coburn, LLP, and allowed authors who were both attorneys and professors to showcase their books and share their publishing experiences with aspiring authors. The panel was well attended by practitioners, judges and professors, including prominent activist and intellectual Dr. Cornel West.
Western State Alum Featured In ABA's Business Law Today
April 1, 2015
Alumnus Betty Boyd (Class of 2007) was featured in the American Bar Associations online publication, Business Law Today, in the Member Spotlight section.
Business Law Today examines substantive and procedural issues relating to corporation, banking, business law and practice-oriented topics. It also highlights recent and important case law from state and federal courts as well as important studies and regulations. It is a publication of the American Bar Association Section of Business Law.
William D. Shapiro receives the 2015 CAL-ABOTA Trial Lawyer of the Year Award
March 29, 2015
Adjunct Professor William D. Shapiro (Class of 1978 | Hall of Fame | Dean’s Counselor) recently received the 2015 CAL-ABOTA Trial Lawyer of the Year Award, by many accounts the highest honor a California trial lawyer can receive. The California Chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates awards it annually to the attorney who most exhibits excellence in advocacy, a distinguished career, and a reputation for civility, ethics, and fair play. William Shapiro currently teaches Civil Trial Practice at Western State.
Philip Merkel Chosen as “Professor of the Year” for 2014-15
March 27, 2015
The Western State College of Law Student Bar Association has chosen Professor Philip L. Merkel as “Professor of the Year” for the 2014-2015 academic year. Professor Merkel received the award at the law school’s annual Barrister’s Ball which was held on March 21, 2015, at the Hilton Orange County Hotel in Costa Mesa.
Eunice Park Publishes in California Lawyer Magazine
March 26, 2015
Professor Eunice Park has contributed to California Lawyer Magazine’s column, LegalEase, with her article on modeling objectivity to make facts advocate most compellingly, in the March 2015 issue. The article incorporated examples from the appellate briefs filed in New Jersey v. T.L.O., 469 U.S. 325 (1985). In an earlier column, published in November 2014, Professor Park spoke to the trend of the increasing prevalence of the e-mail memorandum in this era of mobile communications, noting that protocols for style, substance and structure are continuing to evolve with technology, and offered guidance on how to write an effective e-mail memorandum.
Neil Pedersen Publishes Article on Tracking Billable Time, Presents Webinar on Attorney-Client Contract
March 23, 2015
Adjunct Professor Neil Pedersen (Class of 1988 | Hall of Fame) has recently published in The Bottom Line, the official publication of the State Bar Law Practice Management and Technology Section. His two-part article, entitled “Time Capture and Recordation: Part 1 – Capturing Your Time,” and “Time Capture and Recordation: Part 2 – Effectively Recording Your Time,” appear in the February and April 2015 editions of the journal. The articles focus on an attorney’s challenges associated with keeping track of billable time, and methods to most effectively capture and then record that time to assure client satisfaction, ethical compliance and maximized profits.
Professor Pedersen also presented a webinar sponsored by the San Diego County Bar Association entitled “The Attorney-Client Contract: The Intersection of Ethical Obligations, Risk Management and Client Retention Strategies.” The webinar, held February 11, emphasized that the attorney contract is far more than a document required by the Rules of Professional Conduct, and when created and presented properly, is a critical part of an attorney’s risk management and client retention efforts.
Robert Molko Serves as Panelist on Topic of Drone Use by Government Agencies
March 18, 2015
Robert Molko participated in the Constitutional Rights Foundation 33d Annual Law Day Conference at Whittier Law School on March 6. Professor Molko was one of two panelists in the workshop, Use of Drones by Government Agencies: “Big Brother Has Arrived”, or 21st Century Crime Fighting Technology Enhancing Public Safety?, which focused on the Fourth Amendment and how the U.S. Supreme Court's latest interpretations of this amendment would affect public agency drone use. Over 200 high school students from the Orange County area and their teachers attended the two sessions.
Monica Todd and Eunice Park Present on Cultural Competence at UNM
March 17, 2015
Professors Monica Todd and Eunice Park presented "Cultural Competence--A Critical Skill for Modern Lawyering," at the Rocky Mountain Legal Writing Conference, held at the University of New Mexico School of Law March 5-6. Cultural competency has been identified by the ABA as a professional skill needed for competent and ethical participation as a member of the legal profession, and the California Bar counts it among the experiential skills. The presentation, which included Professor Lori Roberts' assessment rubric, addressed methods currently being employed for incorporating cultural competency as a learning outcome in Western State's legal writing program.
Western State Ranked #1 for Bar Exam Preparation in California and #5 Nationally by The National Jurist in February 2015
March 9, 2015
Allen Easley, Dean at Western State College of Law, was quoted in the February 2015 issue of The National Jurist magazine, which ranks WSCL as 5th in the nation and 1st in California on a list of best law schools for bar exam preparation. In addition, the piece was picked up by the TaxProf Blog, one of the top blogs for law professors.
Students Place in Regional Bankruptcy Moot Court Competition
March 2, 2015
Professor Lori Roberts’ students, Robert Dagmy, 2L and Perla Huizar, 3L, participated in the regional Judge Lloyd George Bankruptcy Moot Court Competition at the William S. Boyd School of Law, University of Nevada, Las Vegas, winning “Runner Up.” The only awards for this competition, held the weekend of February 21, were “first place,” “runner up,” and “best oralist.” The students researched and prepared for this competition with coach Pamela Zylstra, a local practicing bankruptcy lawyer.
Western State Students Win National Moot Court Competition
February 9, 2015
Congratulations to our Honors Moot Court students for their award-winning victories at the 20th Annual National Juvenile Law Moot Court Competition. 2Ls Larissa Parker and Zoha Khan won the competition, and Zoha earned the “#10 Top Oralist” award. 2Ls Jonathan Martinez and Christopher Gipe advanced to the quarter final rounds, and won the “Distinguished Brief” award for writing the third best brief in the competition. Jonathan also earned the “#5 Top Oralist” award. They were coached by Professors Monica Todd and Elizabeth Jones.
Robert Molko’s Article Cited in Appellate Brief to New Mexico Supreme Court
February 5, 2015
Professor Robert Molko’s article, “The Drones are Coming! Will the Fourth Amendment Stop Their Threat to Our Privacy?”, 78 Brook. Law Rev. 1279 (2013) , was cited by the New Mexico Attorney General in her July 31, 2014 Appellate Brief to the New Mexico Supreme Court in the case of State v. Norman Davis. Argued before that court in January, the central issue of the case is whether aerial surveillance by police constitutes a search requiring a warrant.
Neil Pedersen, Doug Schroeder and Bill Shapiro Named Southern California Super Lawyers
January 26, 2015
Thompson Reuters has published its list of Super Lawyers for 2015. Adjunct Professors Neil Pedersen (’98), Doug Schroeder and Bill Shapiro (’78) have all been named Southern California Super Lawyers. This distinction is conferred on select attorneys based on a process that involves peer nomination, independent research and evaluation by the publisher, resulting in only about 5% of all attorneys in the state being named to the list. The full list of Super Lawyers can be found here.
Allen Easley appointed Dean of Western State College of Law
January 20, 2015
Western State is very happy to announce that Allen Easley has been appointed Dean of the law school. “I am thrilled to have this opportunity to help a great law school plan its future,” says Dean Easley, who has been at Western State since 2012 and served as Interim Dean in 2014.
Dean Easley brings to his role at Western State College of Law over thirty years of experience in legal education. He served as Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at Washburn University School of Law for thirteen years, as President & Dean at William Mitchell College of Law, and as Dean at the University of La Verne College of Law. Dean Easley has served in numerous leadership positions at the ABA, AALS and LSAC, the three major national organizations that support legal education, serving as chair on key committees, and as a member or chair of over twenty site inspection teams for the ABA, AALS and WASC.
Immigration Law Students’ Trip Featured in ABA Publication
January 13, 2015
The field trip to the U.S.-Mexico border taken last year by students in Professor Jennifer Koh’s Immigration Law class was described in the January 2015 issue of the ABA publication The Student Lawyer. Students participating in the day-long trip visited first with Customs and Border Patrol officials, and then with volunteers from a humanitarian organization that works with migrants. The trip formed the basis of an experience-based memo assignment. Professor Koh was quoted on her observation that the experience caused students to question their assumptions, gave students a much broader sense of possible immigration law career paths, and that students were “exposed to the legal system in a new way, and . . . able to see how the law has a deep influence in our country and on people’s individual lives.”
The Honorable James Rogan to teach Criminal Trial Practice
January 8, 2015
Western State proudly welcomes The Honorable James Rogan, Orange County Superior Court Judge, who joins the Western State adjunct faculty this semester and will teach Criminal Trial Practice. The esteemed jurist brings a wealth of experience on the bench, as a lawmaker and a lawyer to his role in the classroom. A corporate litigator, he was first appointed to the Municipal Court in Los Angeles in 1990, named to the Superior Court in 2006. James Rogan served in the California State Assembly, elected there as Republican Majority Leader and then won two terms in Congress. He was Undersecretary of Commerce and Director of the US Patent and Trademark Office during the Bush Administration.
Governor Brown appoints Western State alumnus to Orange County Superior Court
January 5, 2015
Congratulations to Western State alumnus John R. Zitny on his appointment to a judgeship in the Orange County Superior Court! Click here to read more.
Fall 2014 Immigration Clinic Students
November 24, 2014
The Immigration Clinic students collectively reflect experience this semester on a wide range of immigration work: bond hearings, detention work, asylum, U visas, adjustment of status, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, Violence Against Women Act self-petitioning, and defenses to deportation. They have worked on behalf of survivors of political persecution, rape, domestic violence, kidnapping, and sexual assault, and confronted the effects of racial profiling, drug addiction, gang violence, and immigration detention in their Clinic work this semester.
Mia Lomedico selected for a law clerk position through CELA
November 23, 2014
Western State student Mia Lomedico has been selected for a law clerk position offered through the prestigious CELA organization (California Employment Lawyers Association). CELA's program arranges interviews for students desiring to join an employment law firm for a 10-week summer clerkship. Mia will be joining a CELA-member firm in Orange County for her Summer 2015 position. CELA also offers an employee justice fellowship stipend, the selections for which will be announced in January 2015. Congratulations, Mia!
Positive legal market news from our Assistant Dean of Career Resources
November 21, 2014
The Bureau of Labor Statistics recently predicted there are 41,460 attorney openings per year. This will create an incredible shift in demand over supply for law graduates beginning with the Class of 2016. Our current students can look forward to launching their careers in a robust legal market, prepared with the practical skills training and strong academic foundation that Western State provides.” – Pam Davidson, Assistant Dean for Career Resources
Myanna Dellinger Moderates Panel on International Economic Law
November 17, 2014
Professor Myanna Dellinger moderated a panel on international economic law at the 2014 biennial meeting of the American Society of International Law. The theme of the meeting was “Reassessing International Economic Law and Development: New Challenges for Law and Policy.” Held at the University of Denver Sturm College of Law, the meeting featured speakers from New Zealand, Australia, and Germany as well as numerous top American scholars.
Professor Dellinger’s prediction that the United States and China would reach an agreement on climate disruption, made in her 2014 Fordham International Law Journal article, “Narrowed Constellations In A Supranational Climate Change Regime Complex: The ‘Magic Number’ Is Three,” materialized last week. See White House Office of Press Secretary Joint Announcement. Professor Dellinger’s article analyzes treaty precedent in the economic and environmental arenas and explains how a trilateral agreement between, most likely, the United States, the EU, and China, has the potential for broader substantive and procedural expansion in relation to climate change based on previous successful frameworks.
Criminal Law Event, “Parole, Snitch, or Die!”
November 15, 2014
On Thursday, November 13, the Criminal Law Association (CLA) partnered with the Criminal Law Practice Center (CLPC) and Western State Law Review (WSLR) to host Dr. Keramet Reiter's presentation of "Parole, Snitch, or Die!" Dr. Reiter's fascinating examination of supermax prisons focused on California's own Pelican Bay State Prison, one of the first such facilities in the nation, and raised a number of questions about the efficacy and humaneness of this hugely expensive incarceration model. Dr. Reiter is a professor at UCI Law and a national expert on prison law.
Governor Brown appoints Western State alumnus to Orange County Superior Court
November 14, 2014
Congratulations to Western State alumnus Craig Arthur on his appointment to a judgeship in the Orange County Superior Court! Click here to read more.
Western State ranks 12th in diversity
November 13, 2014
Western State is again cited among the top law schools nationally for diversity, earning 12th place honors and another “A” from National Jurist in their November 2014 review of the “Most Diverse Law Schools”. The publication’s report on law schools this year included minority faculty as well as students, so Western State ’s nearly 55% students of color and 21% minority faculty reflected well our commitment to welcome and foster diversity across our community. Western State also earned an A in National Jurist’s 2012 diversity ratings for law schools.
Western State Moot Court Students Place Second in National Competition
November 10, 2014
Congratulations to our students Alex Shaaban, Kylie Starr and Lynet Shigg for earning *five* awards at the Appellate Lawyers Association (ALA) Moot Court Competition in Chicago this weekend! The results: 2nd place overall; 2nd pl oralist (overall, Alex Shaaban), 1st pl oralist (semis, Alex Shaaban), 2nd pl oralist (semis, Kylie Starr), 1st pl oralist (prelims, Alex Shaaban)! They were coached by faculty advisor Professor Robert Molko.
American Bar Association's (ABA's) Eleventh Annual Trial Advocacy Competition
November 10, 2014
On Saturday, 11/08/14, two four-member teams of Western State students competed in the American Bar Association's (ABA's) Eleventh Annual Trial Advocacy Competition in the old Federal Courthouse in downtown Los Angeles. Each of our mock trial teams conducted two complete three-hour trials against top teams from other California law schools. The teams competed once as the plaintiff's advocates and once as the defendant's to resolve an employment law dispute: whether exotic dancers should be classified as independent contractors or employees of an adult entertainment club. This was the first time that Western State has participated in the ABA's mock trial competition.
The two Mock Trial teams were coached by Professor Donald Daucher and was comprised of Steve Bell, Suzie Kersh, Vanessa James, Jeanette Garcia, Danielle Cappy, Aaron Munoz, Nick Maranesi and Ariel Armendariz.
Congratulations to Jeff Brockmeier (‘13)!
November 6, 2014
Jeff Brockmeier (‘13) was recently sworn in to the California Army National Guard.
Kevin Mohr Joins Other Experts in Legal Ethics and Technology Seminar, Publishes on Ethics of Outsourcing Legal Services, & Joins OCBA Panel Presentation on Effective and Ethical Marketing
November 6, 2014
On October 25, 2014 in Paso Robles, California, Professor Kevin Mohr participated with other leading ethics experts in a day-long legal ethics and technology seminar titled: “Building and Expanding a Twenty-First Century Law Practice: Technology, the Cloud and Ethics.” The seminar, sponsored in part by the The Rutter Group, covered topics that included how to create a virtual law practice ethically, the use of cloud computing in law practice, the ethics of outsourcing and offshoring legal services, implementing effective cybersecurity measures to protect confidential client information, and the ethics of online lawyer marketing and use of social media. The seminar was well-received by an enthusiastic audience of lawyers and paralegals.
View the rest of the story
Professor Kevin Mohr recently published an article titled “The Ethics of Outsourcing Legal Services” in the October issue of the BOTTOM LINE, the leading publication of the Law Practice Management and Technology Section (LPMT) of the State Bar of California. The article comprehensively addresses the principal ethical duties implicated when a lawyer outsources legal services in his or her practice: to preserve and protect confidential client information, to provide competent legal services, to avoid conflicts of interest, to communicate with the client concerning significant developments in the representation, not to charge an unconscionable fee or to divide fees with a non-lawyer, and to avoid assisting in the unauthorized practice of law by exercising independent judgment over, and accepting ultimate responsibility for, the outsourced work product. The article also provides practical guidance for practitioners by identifying precautions a lawyer should take to ensure compliance with ethical duties. Professor Mohr concludes that when such appropriate safeguards are implemented, a lawyer can meet his or her ethical obligations when outsourcing legal services.
On September 3, 2014 in Newport Beach, California, Professor Kevin Mohr joined a panel of well-respected local lawyers in an evening seminar titled “Effective & Ethical Marketing to Attract and Retain the Best Clients.” Sponsored by Solo and Small Firm Section of the Orange County Bar Association, the program covered many topics, including the importance of effectively branding your practice, the do’s and don’t’s of networking, the use of the Internet and social media to market a practice, and the residual value of print advertising. Professor Mohr posed hypotheticals that raised ethics issues concerning networking and the use of social media, but assured the audience that engaging in both are ethical when simple precautions are taken.
Immigration Clinic and Law Review Host Panel on Migration of Unaccompanied Minors from Central America
November 5, 2014
On October 22, 2014, the Western State Immigration Clinic and Western State University Law Review hosted a guest speaker panel to address the surge of migration from Central America that has taken place at the US-Mexico border since the summer of 2014.
View the rest of the story
The panel was comprised of Kris Jackson, Esq., Senior Staff Attorney at Public Counsel Law Center and adjunct professor at UCLA Law School; Cynthia Lucas, partner at Lucas & Barba and the past president of the American Immigration Lawyers Association Southern California Chapter, and Prof. Jennifer Lee Koh, Director of the Western State Immigration Clinic. The panel addressed a range of policy and legal issues, including the legal framework governing the treatment of unaccompanied minors; the rise of family detention; the right to counsel in the immigration system; and immigration courts' response to the surge in Central American migration.
The event was also co-sponsored by the Public Interest Law Foundation, Latino Student Bar Association, Orange County Bar Association Immigration Law Section, and American Immigration Lawyers Association Southern California Chapter.
Elizabeth N. Jones Publishes on Crime Victims' Rights
November 5, 2014
Elizabeth Jones’s recent law review article, The Ascending Role of Crime Victims in Plea-Bargaining and Beyond, has been published in the West Virginia Law Review. In this piece, Professor Jones examines the rights of crime victims to meaningfully participate in the prosecution of their assailants. The West Virginia Law Review took particular interest in her article, as the high profile murder of teenager Skylar Neese by her two best friends occurred in Monongalia County, WV. The case, which drew nationwide attention, included a passionate victim impact statement from Skylar’s father at the sentencing hearings. Professor Jones’s article focuses on states with constitutional amendments guaranteeing victims of crime and their families the right to participate during the critical court stage of plea-bargaining. The article can be accessed at Professor Jones's SSRN page: http://ssrn.com/author=1641671.
Upcoming Campus Event: “Parole, Snitch or Die!”
November 3, 2014
Western State's Criminal Law Association (CLA) and Law Review will be co-hosting a special prison law event on Thursday, 11/13/14, 5:00-6:15 p.m. in Room #109. U.C.I. Law professor and former Prison Law Office attorney, Dr. Keramet Reiter, will be presenting "Parole, Snitch, or Die: Understanding Supermax Incarceration in California and the Nation." The title of her presentation derives from the only three ways a prisoner can get out of California's supermax prison at Pelican Bay. Dinner will be served. For additional information, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Cheyanna Jaffke to Publish on Tax Consequences of Unionizing Collegiate Athletes
November 3, 2014
Cheyanna Jaffke has accepted an offer to publish her article, "Unionizing Collegiate Athletes: The Unintended Tax Consequences That Will Hurt Athletes More Than Unionizing Them Helps," with Rutgers Law Record. Rutgers Law Record is the nation’s first online-only law journal accredited by the ABA, and is the third most cited Student Law Journal in New Jersey. Practitioners and legal scholars are able to access Rutgers Law Record's articles through LexisNexis, Westlaw, and Bloomberg, and the journal's online presence reaches beyond the legal community through the use of non-subscription based websites such as Google Scholar and LawRecord.com.
On October 16, CLPC hosted its Fall 2014 Distinguished Speaker, Hon. Joanne Motoike, who shared her unusual and inspirational journey to the bench. Judge Motoike became interested in the law as a child, listening to stories of her father and neighbors who were sent to internment camps during World War II. She pursued her dreams at U.C. Irvine and then at Loyola Law School. Judge Motoike’s legal career spans more than two decades. Before ascending to the bench, Judge Motoike served both as an international War Crimes Prosecutor for the United Nations and as a Deputy Orange County Public Defender. Her experiences as a U.N. war crimes prosecutor in The Hague were especially intriguing. In Europe, she maneuvered an extremely complex mixed-jurisdiction legal system, including aspects of both our common law and the Napoleonic civil code, to prosecute high-level political figures for murder, torture, and crimes against humanity. Once each semester, Western State’s Criminal Law Practice Center (CLPC) hosts its “Distinguished Speaker Event” highlighting outstanding accomplishments in the criminal law. This semester’s event was co-sponsored by the Criminal Law Association (CLA) and the Asian Pacific American Law Students Association (APALSA).
Congratulations to William Shapiro ('78)!
October 29, 2014
Adjunct professor William Shapiro, who currently teaches Civil Trial Practice, was named Attorney of the Month in OC Attorney Journal. Click here to view the article.
Western State Faculty Present on Teaching Skills & Social Justice and Comparative Racialization & Genealogies at Society of American Law Teachers Conference
October 27, 2014
On October 10, 2014, Paula Manning, Ryan Williams, Lori Roberts, Elizabeth Jones and Jennifer Koh delivered a presentation entitled, "Teaching in 2015: The Integration of Skills and Social Justice for Modern Lawyering" at the Society of American Law Teachers (SALT) Teaching Conference. Their presentation included concrete examples of how they individually promote skills training and social justice goals in the classroom, and how law faculty can increase institutional commitments to teaching social justice as part of the law school curriculum. The presenters represented the law school's doctrinal teaching, academic support, clinical, and legal writing programs, and also reflected substantive expertise in a range of subject matters (namely Torts, Civil Procedure, Criminal Law, National Security, and Immigration Law). Western State made a particularly strong showing at the SALT conference this year. Neil Gotanda presented at the same conference on "Teaching Race to People of Color: Comparative Racialization and Racial Genealogies." Professor Gotanda also presented during the SALT-LatCrit junior faculty development workshop on October 9.
Winifred Jow’s (3L) Study Abroad Experience at Emmanuel College of Cambridge University
October 21, 2014
Winifred C. Jow, May 2015 Juris Doctor Candidate, studied abroad during Summer 2014 at Emmanuel College of Cambridge University. She attended the program through the ABA-accredited University of Richmond School of Law.
View the rest of the story
Winifred C. Jow, May 2015 Juris Doctor Candidate, studied abroad during Summer 2014 at Emmanuel College of Cambridge University. She attended the program through the ABA-accredited University of Richmond School of Law. Her main focus in the program was to pursue her concentration in Intellectual Property. The International Intellectual Property Litigation course was taught by Christopher Cotropia (University of Richmond School of Law). Cambridge Law Faculty taught the courses that also included Selected Issues of Public International Law with Professor John A. Hopkins (Downing College, Cambridge University) and Comparative Public Law of the U.S. and U.K. with Professor Mark Elliot (St. Catharine’s College, Cambridge University). Cambridge accommodations at Emmanuel College were immaculate, beautiful, and historic. During the program, there was a scheduled visit to the Middle Temple Inn and the Royal Courts of Justice. Alongside her colleagues, they enjoyed a marvelous three-course lunch at the High Table, which was reputedly a gift from Queen Elizabeth I to the Middle Temple in the 16th century. The Cambridge program was an opportunity for Winifred to study English law as a foundation to advance her interest in digital intellectual property rights. Winifred brings her experience back to Western State to enhance her leadership positions as President of Entertainment, Entertainment and Sports Law Society and the Chairperson of Alumni Relations and Career Services.
Neil Pedersen Honored by CELA and Named to Top Lawyers of Southern California
October 13, 2014
Adjunct Professor Neil Pedersen has been honored this month by the California Employment Lawyers Association (CELA), which has placed him on the “Wall of Justice” at this year’s annual CELA Convention, held in San Diego. Wall of Justice honorees are recognized for contributions to the CELA community, and Professor Pedersen was honored for his contributions in mentoring some of CELA’s younger members. Professor Pedersen also has been named as one of the Top Lawyers of Southern California for 2014 in the annual publication sponsored by American Legal Media and the Los Angeles Times. This is the fourth year in a row that Professor Pedersen has been so honored by this publication.
Myanna Dellinger Cited in Australian Academic and Finnish Government Research
October 7, 2014
Myanna Dellinger’s publication on public participation in government decision-making and enforcement, “Ten Years of the Aarhus Convention: How Procedural Democracy is Paving the Way for Substantive Change in National and International Environmental Law,” has been cited in two different publications around the world. One is “Addressing Climate Vulnerability: Promoting the Participatory Rights of Indigenous Peoples and Women through Finnish Foreign Policy,” a publication commissioned by the Finnish Ministry for Foreign Affairs; and the other is “From International Principles to Local Practices: a Socio-legal Framing of Public Participation Research,” written by a scholar with the University of New England School of Law’s Australian Centre for Agriculture and Law. Professor Dellinger promotes public participation in government affairs, and the cited article urges that although not always easily effectuated, public participation leads to significant advantages including better substantive rulemaking, a higher degree of buy-in by the general public and thus a reduced need for law enforcement, cost benefits for governments, government accountability, and more actual on-the-ground change when compared to traditional top-down solutions.
Monica Todd and Eunice Park Present at Stanford Law School
October 2, 2014
Eunice Park and Monica Todd presented at the Fourth Annual Western Regional Legal Writing Conference Program at Stanford Law School on September 20, 2014. The theme of the conference was “Beyond Carrots and Sticks: Motivating Students to Do Their Best Work.” Their presentation, entitled “Good Vibrations: The Power of Professorial Positivity,” addressed theories and empirical data supporting the beneficial effect on student learning of a positive teaching demeanor and classroom environment, and they provided specific examples of in-class exercises in the legal writing classroom that encourage a growth-oriented mindset.
Professor Tracie Porter Invited as Guest Speaker on Residential Mortgage Short Sale Transactions Tax Laws
September 15, 2014
On September 11, 2014, Tracie Porter was the invited guest speaker for the La Verne College of Law’s Faculty Workshop Series. Professor Porter spoke on her work in progress, currently entitled, “The Quagmire of Financial Indebtedness Under Current Tax Laws in Residential Mortgage Short Sale Transactions,” which focuses on federal tax liability owed to the U.S. Internal Revenue Service. Professor Porter was one of four guest speakers for the law school’s speaking series, and her well-attended session included the Dean of the law school, faculty and law review students.
Professor Charles Sheppard to Serve on Law Students Veterans Coalition Steering Committee
September 9, 2014
Beginning this fall, Charles Sheppard will be serving as a member of the Law Students Veterans Coalition Steering Committee, led by Committee Chair Honorable Lon Hurwitz, Judge of the Superior Court for the County of Orange. The committee’s goal is to establish a coalition among Southern California law schools to increase awareness about veteran issues and related matters. Along with Professor Sheppard, members of the Committee include other members of the bench, members of the bar, a representative of Chapman School of Law, and possibly other Southern California law schools. A similar coalition, the Northern California Law Students Veterans Coalition, exists among Northern California law schools, including USF School of Law, Golden Gate University School of Law, Pacific McGeorge School of Law, Stanford Law School, UC Davis School of Law, and UC Hastings College of Law.
Professor Tracie Porter to Moderate AALS Panel Sponsored by Section on Commercial and Consumer Related Law
September 9, 2014
Tracie Porter is a Moderator for an AALS Panel entitled, “Emerging Scholars in Commercial and Consumer Law,” sponsored by the Section on Commercial and Consumer Related Law, of which Professor Porter has been an active member since joining the legal academy in 2006. The panel presentation will take place at the AALS Annual meeting in Washington, D.C. in January 2015. The panel topic and speakers have been posted on the ContractsProf Blog.
Neil Pedersen Publishes Article in Law Practice Management and Technology E-News
September 8, 2014
Adjunct Professor Neil Pedersen has published an article entitled "Let Technology Work For You, Not Against You" in the September-October edition of the State Bar of California Law Practice Management and Technology Section's E-News. This article is sixth in a series of articles on time management for attorneys. Professor Pedersen teaches Law Practice Management and Technology at Western State which includes content on time management techniques.
Professor Myanna Dellinger Teaches International Environmental Law at Law School in China
September 4, 2014
Myanna Dellinger, who researches and writes on issues of national and international environmental law and the democratic development of the rule of law as well as contracts law, taught International Environmental Law for the China University of Political Science and Law during the summer of 2014. CUPL is the second-highest ranked law school in China. Issues Professor Dellinger covered in the course included international climate change law and public participation in government decision-making and enforcement, and her law students ranged from bachelors, masters to doctoral candidates.
Neil Pedersen Named Among Top Employment Law Attorneys in Orange County
September 2, 2014
Adjunct professor Neil Pedersen (Class of 1998, Hall of Fame Member) has been named one of Orange County’s Top Attorneys in the area of Employment Law by the Orange County Register’s OC Metro Magazine. Professor Pedersen teaches Employment Law and Law Practice Management and Technology. This is the second consecutive year that Professor Pedersen has appeared on this exclusive list.
Alumna Nominated to Run for OCBA Secretary
September 1, 2014
The Western State Community congratulates Solange Ritchie (Class of 1994, Hall of Fame 2013), who has been selected by the OCBA Nominating Committee to run for OCBA Secretary the 2015-2016 term. Additionally, the State Bar’s Solo and Small Firm section will award Ritchie the 2014 Myer J. Sankary Attorney of the Year Award. The Section presents the Award each year to a lawyer who has shown dedication to public service, and demonstrated leadership to the legal community. The award will be presented on Friday evening, 9/12/2014, at the Section’s reception at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in San Diego, the site of this year’s State Bar Annual Meeting.
Western State grads awaiting bar results network with OCBA
August 27, 2014
Ten of Western State’s class of 2014 had a successful evening of networking and meeting new friends at the OCBA’s Bar Waiters’ Reception on August 26 at the OCBA offices in Newport Beach.
View the rest of the story
The purpose of the evening was for new graduates to meet with mentoring attorneys who can provide support during the four month period between the Bar exam and release of results. Joining thirty graduates from Orange County law schools and dozens of practicing attorneys, the Western State 10 left the event with handfuls of business cards and the glow of a warm welcome into the OCBA community. OCBA President, Tom Bienert, Jr., took to the podium to greet the attendees and share some of his memories from law school and of taking the Bar exam, and mentioning the close friendships he has made over the years of his involvement with the OCBA. Sarah J. Nowels, Chairperson of the Young Lawyers Division, shared her reasons for joining the YLD and the many benefits she has reaped both personally and professionally in her role. Several Western State alumni were on hand to graciously share their wisdom and experience, including Neil Pedersen, Pearl Mann, Solange Ritchie and Patricia Lee-Gulley. Thank you to the OCBA for hosting what will likely be the first of many Bar Waiters Receptions in the coming years!
Western State supports innovative incubator program with O.C. Legal Aid Society
August 25, 2014
Beginning January, up to 10 recent Western State graduates will have the opportunity to serve low income clients under the auspices of Orange County's Legal Aid Society, while they in turn acquire valuable legal experience and receive hands-on training and mentoring. Read more.
Mike Zatlin to extern at California Court of Appeal
August 18, 2014
Congratulations to 4L Mike Zatlin, selected to assist Justice William Bedsworth at the California Court of Appeal, Fourth District, this fall. After completing this prestigious judicial externship, Mike looks forward to graduation in spring 2015 and to a new career helping others though the practice of law, following his previous career in electronic sales. Mr Zatlin also serves on the Law Review; as a member of the Honors Moot Court Team he has represented Western State at the New York Law School Wagner Labor Law Competition in the Spring of both 2013 and 2014.
Jonathan Pink Wins Legal Fees Ruling for Black Eyed Peas
August 18, 2014
Adjunct intellectual property Professor Jonathan Pink served as lead counsel for The Black Eyed Peas in successfully defending against a copyright claim earlier this year. On July 28, California federal judge Josephine Stanton ordered the plaintiff to pay Professor Pink’s client, the band, along with its artistic collaborators, a combined $2.5 million in legal fees and costs, finding that The Black Eyed Peas did not steal the “guitar twang” melody in “I Gotta Feeling” from a 1990s dance track, and awarding defendants the expenses of fighting the claim and appeal to the Ninth Circuit.
William Shapiro ('78) Recognized as Trial Advocate, Educates Other Attorneys
August 12, 2014
Adjunct professor William Shapiro, who currently teaches Civil Trial Practice, was nominated “2014 Trial Lawyer of the Year” by the California Chapters of the American Board of Trial Advocates (Cal-ABOTA) and named “2014 Trial Lawyer of the Year” by the Consumer Attorneys of the Inland Empire. Professor Shapiro will be a featured presenter on “Voir Dire” at Cal-ABOTA’s upcoming Masters in Trial professional education seminar in September, has given multiple “Civility Now” presentations this year in Southern California, and recently was invited to give a “Closing Argument” before members of the Arkansas Bar Association at their June 2014 Annual Meeting.
Alumna appointed Judge of the Orange County Superior Court
August 12, 2014
The Western State community congratulates Nancy E. Zeltzer (Class of 1977 and Hall of Fame inductee), who has just been appointed Judge of the Orange County Superior Court by Governor Brown.
It's Official! Western State's 83% February 2014 bar pass rate ranks #5 in California.
August 7, 2014
In official results just published for the February 2014 California Bar Exam, Western State graduates’ success rate was again among the top in the state. WSCL’s first time pass rate exceeded the ABA law school average by 14 points, continuing a record of consistent strong performance, placing the school in the top ten on eight of the nine last bar exams. Congratulations to our terrific graduates!
Associate Dean Allen Easley appointed Interim Dean and Interim Vice Chancellor
July 28, 2014
Dean Allen Easley, who has been at Western State for two years, brings to his role as Interim Dean more than thirty years experience in legal education. He has served previously as Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at Washburn University School of Law for thirteen years, as President and Dean at William Mitchell College of Law, and as Dean at the University of La Verne College of Law. Dean Easley has also held numerous leadership positions at the ABA, American Association of Law Schools (AALS), and the Law School Admissions Council (LSAC), the three major national organizations that support legal education. He will serve as Interim Dean and Interim Vice Chancellor of Argosy University during the upcoming academic 2014-15 year, while a national search for a permanent dean is currently being planned.
Tracie Porter Edits ABA International Law Year in Review, Re-Appointed as Vice-Chair
July 15, 2014
Tracie R. Porter served as a Committee Editor for the American Bar Association International Law Section Year in Review (YIR). The YIR is the annual survey of international legal developments, published in cooperation with Southern Methodist University’s Dedman School of Law. Professor Porter’s article reviewed developments in cross-border real estate practice, including recovering markets in the European Union and the impact on the real estate markets related to the World Cup held this year in Brazil and in 2018 in Russia. Vice-Chair for the Section’s Cross Border Real Estate Practice Section, Professor Porter has been reappointed by ABA International Law Section Chair-Elect Marcelo E. Bombau to serve another term.
The 2014 issue of the law review and the committee’s articles may be found at 48 ABA/SIL YIR 1, 319 (2014).
Anabella's article, "Tips to Becoming a Great Legal Networker," recently appeared as part of the Continuing Education of the Bar Blog. She has involved herself with mentoring Western State students and recent graduates along with giving on-campus presentations on her area of expertise, trademark litigation. She will be coming to the campus this September for a LinkedIn workshop.
Students, graduates, and faculty celebrate summer at OCBA’s Mixer in Dana Point
July 1, 2014
Dana Point’s Salt Creek Grille’s outdoor patio was the setting for the OCBA’s sold-out Summer Mixer on June 26. Western State guests included students Angelina Lerma, Winnie Jow, Aida Khamis and Deanna Kapelnikov along with recent graduates Michael Jeandron, Peggy No and Jason Martinez. Professor Lori Roberts joined alumna Patricia Lee-Gulley to make a strong showing of support for Western State.
Professor Paula Manning Selected for Leadership Positions in AASE and ABA
June 19, 2014
Paula Manning has been installed as President of the Association of Academic Support Educators (AASE) for 2014-15. AASE is the national organization devoted to the professional development of academic support programs and faculty. Professor Manning also has been selected by the Council on Legal Education Opportunity (CLEO) to teach its pre-law Attitude is Essential program. CLEO is the nonprofit entity of the American Bar Association whose mission is to diversify the legal profession. Since its inception in 1968, CLEO has been at the forefront of helping minority, low-income and disadvantaged students gain access to law school, successfully matriculate and pass the bar exam.
Professor Eunice Park writes on Integrating Practical Skills into the Curriculum
June 17, 2014
The proposed practical skills requirement for pre-admission to the bar may begin to minimize the divide between doctrine and practice, or theory and skill, which has characterized most of legal education in the United States. In her article, "Legal Education: Integrating Practical Skills Into the Curriculum," published June in Orange County Lawyer Magazine, Professor Eunice Park proposes that the practical skills aspects of lawyering should not now be viewed as a merely technical component that will subsume the abstract conceptualization and critical reasoning skills fundamental to lawyering, and she shares ways in which Western State has succeeded in integrating skills training with doctrinal material in the classroom.
Professor Lori Roberts writes on Getting Involved in Legal Education
Professor Neil Gotanda to Speak at UCLA Critical Race Studies Conference
June 13, 2014
Neil Gotanda will join a list of influential critical race theory scholars at the Eighth Critical Race Studies Symposium, sponsored by UCLA Law School. The conference theme is “Whiteness as Property,” and is in commemoration of the 20th anniversary of a law review article with the same title, written by UCLA law professor Cheryl Harris.
Professor Myanna Dellinger Chosen to Teach International Environmental Law in China, Writes on Environmental Subjects
June 13, 2014
During the late summer of 2014, Myanna Dellinger will be teaching international environmental law at the Chinese University of Political Science and Law in Beijing, a renowned Chinese legal institution. Professor Dellinger will be focusing on national and international aspects of climate change, wildlife law, hazardous waste, environmental human rights and public participation. China has recently adopted extensive federal public participation laws, an area in which Professor Dellinger researches and writes.
Professor Koppel’s attendance at the 2014 ALI Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C.
June 11, 2014
Professor Glenn Koppel, a member of the American Law Institute, recently returned from the ALI’s 2014 Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C. He was one of four bloggers invited by the ALI to post commentaries on the Annual Meeting’s webpage. Two Supreme Court justices – Chief Justice Roberts and Associate Justice Ginsburg – made award presentations and a third – Associate Justice Breyer – treated those present at the Annual Dinner to a conversation with outgoing Director Lance Liebman in which they reminisced about their early days as fledgling Harvard Law profs.
View the rest of the story
Among the restatement projects considered at the three-day meeting was the Foreign Relations Law (Fourth) of the United States of which Professor Koppel is a member of the Members Consultative Group. During the session devoted to the Chapter on Recognition of Foreign Judgments, Koppel stepped up to the mike to comment on a section of the Restatement dealing with the claim and issue preclusion effects of foreign judgments which was the subject of the following post by another blogger: "Section 402, Procedure to Obtain Recognition was discussed next. Professor Glenn Koppel commented that an illustration would be helpful. He offered the use of collateral estoppel where different consumers purchase products in different countries. Professor Stephan said they have deferred the discussion and could use an illustration. Professor Koppel also commented that in the first two paragraphs on actions recognizing foreign judgments, and offered the actions with recognition and enforcement should be broken out. It looks like a third situation where no assets are in the foreign state. William Dodge said they would look at it."
Western State Congratulates its 2013/2014 Graduates
May 24, 2014
Western State was delighted to welcome over 2500 guests to the Long Beach Performing Arts Center for its 2014 Commencement Exercises. The lobby and auditorium teemed with happy crowds, delighted to celebrate the success of their students, friends, and families. Over 150 Western State Graduates took the stage to receive their diplomas signifying their status as Juris Doctors, many December Graduates having just passed the California Bar Exam. Western State wishes to Congratulate the class of 2013/2014 for its hard work and accomplishment. And to our May Graduates: Good Luck on the Bar Exam!
83% of Western State's first time takers passed the February 2014 California Bar Exam!
May 20, 2014
Congratulations to Western State graduates who again placed among the top results in California, well exceeding the average of 69% for our state’s 21 ABA law schools. For seven of the last eight bar exams, Western State graduates have outperformed their counterparts from at least half of the ABA-approved law schools in California. Swearing in ceremonies presided by alumnus Judge Firmat are scheduled at the law school on June 2nd.
Caren Seenauth wins 2014 Sports Lawyers Association Writing Competition
May 12, 2014
We are pleased to congratulate Western State College of Law May 2014 Juris Doctor candidate, Caren Seenauth, Vice President of the 2013-2014 SBA. Caren has been selected as one of three national winners of the 2014 Sports Lawyers Association Annual Student Writing Competition. The topic of her submission, "The Constitutionality of Social Media Bans within the NCAA," takes a hard look at the NCAA Bylaws restricting collegiate student-athlete social media use. She will be honored at a luncheon on Friday, May 16th at the Sports Lawyers Association's 40th Annual National Conference in Chicago.
View the rest of the story
The Mission of SLA is to provide educational opportunities and disseminate data and information regarding specific areas of sports law. There are over 1,000 current members: practicing lawyers, law educators, law students, and other professionals with an interest in law relating to professional and amateur sports. In recent years the conference has attracted sports lawyers from all fifty states as well as Great Britain, continental Europe, Asia, and Australia.
Caren’s achievement honors her and Western State in this international legal community.
Professor Gotanda’s Asian Studies publications featured
April 28, 2014
Professor Gotanda presented the draft of his book, Asian Americans, Pacific Islanders, and the Law: A Reader at UC Berkeley School of Law, along with co-authors Bob Chang and Rose Cuison Villazor.
View the rest of the story
The text, which is forthcoming on NYU Press, was the feature of a roundtable presentation co-sponsored by groups from UC Davis King Hall School of Law and Seattle University School of Law, as well as groups from UC Berkeley School of Law. Professor Gotanda also presented his paper, "Law and Asian American Studies: Constructing Asian Americans, Limiting and Framing Asian American Studies," at the annual conference of the Association for Asian American Studies, in San Francisco, on April 19.
The Law Review at Western State College of Law Hosts National Security Symposium
April 22, 2014
Over 60 students, faculty, attorneys and national security law enthusiasts gathered at Western State College of Law on Saturday, April 12th for "The Constitutionality and Consequences of America's Use of Drones and the NSA Spying Program," hosted by the Western State Law Review.
View the rest of the story
Moderated by Professor Ryan T. Williams, assistant professor at Western State College of Law, and Law Review Symposium Editor, Justin Morrison, the event featured two distinguished panels of national security experts hailing from prominent legal institutions across the nation, and a keynote presentation by Dean Erwin Chemerinsky from the University of California Irvine School of Law.
Major General Charles Dunlap, Jr. from Duke University School of Law, Assistant Dean Amy Gaudion from Penn State Law, Professor John Radsan from William Mitchell School of Law and Professor Kevin Smith from Whittier Law School participated in a colorful discussion on the use of predator drone strikes in the morning panel titled, "Executive Use Only: The Continued Use of Predator Drones in the War on Terror." The panelists explored the effectiveness of the continued use of predator drone strikes and the long-term consequences of such actions. Additionally, the panelists discussed the adequacy of current guidelines for targeted killings and the constitutionality of the decision making process. While panelists Gaudion and Smith expressed the need for greater transparency and heightened judicial involvement in regards to targeted killings; others such as Dunlap strongly disagreed. "Every time there's more transparency, the enemy goes to school on it," he explained.
"Privacy has been a casualty on the War on Terror; and in this way, the Supreme Court has failed to uphold the Constitution," stated Dean Erwin Chemerinsky during his much anticipated keynote presentation. Chemerinsky addressed his perspective on the constitutional concerns related to privacy resulting from the War on Terror and related advances in technology. He further stated, "What the Supreme Court needs to do, but has not yet done, is develop a theory of informational privacy."
The afternoon panel featured Attorney Todd Gallinger from the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), Professor William Snyder from Syracuse University College of Law, moderator, Professor Ryan T. Williams and Professor John Radsan (who participated in both panels). In the discussion titled, "It's Not Paranoia If It's True: The Scope and Legality of the NSA Spying Program," the panel addressed the legality and scope of NSA surveillance as well as the benefits and difficulties resulting from public transparency or lack thereof. In another well-rounded discussion, the panel explored the implications caused by the leak of classified documents by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.
The event was made possible by sponsors: The Law Offices of Jacqueline Goodman; Attorney, Brad Hayes; Cummins & White, LLP and Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP.
Clinic Students Raise Community Awareness on Immigration Fraud
April 21, 2014
On April 12, 2014, Immigration Clinic students Sonya Nevarez, Raul Saldana and Gloria Kim delivered a community education on immigration and notario fraud at the El Modena Family Resource Center, a community-based social services organization located in Orange, California.
View the rest of the story
Sonya, Raul and Gloria researched the problem of immigration fraud, developed all of the presentation materials, gave the presentation and fielded questions from audience members.
"By working on this project, I developed an awareness of the dangers of notario fraud in immigrant communities, and also learned how I as a future lawyer can help prevent people from getting taken advantage of," said Sonya, a third year law student enrolled in the Clinic. " I also honed my oral presentation and advocacy skills."
As students in the Immigration Clinic, Sonya, Raul and Gloria have also been representing clients in efforts to seek political asylum (for survivors of persecution abroad) and U visas (for certain crime victims in the United States). In addition to individual presentation, Clinic students regularly engage in community education and advocacy work that seeks to advance the human rights of noncitizens in the area.
Professor Ryan Williams recognized among outstanding young law professors by Lawyers of Color publication
April 21, 2014
Kudos to Professor Ryan Williams, named to the "50 Under 50" list of outstanding law school professors by Lawyers of Color in the newest Law School Diversity Issue. Access the listing here.
First Annual Criminal Law Alumni Mixer a Big Success
April 15, 2014
The Criminal Law Association and the Criminal Law Practice Center hosted an Alumni Mixer at Florentine’s in downtown Fullerton Friday evening. Approximately 50 lawyers and students were present to mix and mingle with each other. Deputy public defenders, deputy district attorneys, private defense counsel, and a judge from Orange, Los Angeles, and Riverside counties interacted with law students, providing them with excellent contacts for possible externship opportunities and jobs after graduation.
Professor Malagrinó's Sports Law article cited in brief to US Supreme Court
April 14, 2014
The Pacific Legal Foundation and Cato Institute cited and prominently featured Professor Dylan Malagrinó'’s recent article, "Off the Board: NCAA v. Christie Challenges Congress to 'Move the Line' on the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act," 118 Penn. St. L. Rev. 375 (2013), in the body of their amici curiae brief to the U.S. Supreme Court in support of Petitioners in Christie v. NCAA et al. Professor Malagrinó'’s article advances the proposition that state governments are both more responsive to the constituencies affected by state-specific policies regarding sports gambling restrictions and more aware of the local conditions that those laws address. The brief is available here.
Immigration Law Students Tour US-Mexico Border
April 11, 2014
Sixteen Western State law students who have been studying immigration law traveled to the U.S.-Mexico border to witness firsthand the growth of border enforcement along the southern border.
View the rest of the story
"Participating in the border trip was an amazing opportunity that gave me unique insight into the agency and the realities of what we have been learning in the law school," stated Jossiel Moreira (’14), a Western State third year who is taking the survey Immigration Law class, and has represented several clients this year through the Immigration Clinic and Advanced Immigration Clinic.
The day-long trip, organized by Professor Jennifer Koh (who teaches immigration law and directs the law school’s on-site immigration clinic), also exposed students to multiple perspectives on border enforcement. First, in the morning, U.S. Border Patrol agents provided students with a guided tour of the U.S.-Mexico border near San Ysidro, California. Students rode in U.S. Border Patrol vans, walked along an "enforcement zone" (not accessible to the public) between border fence and the U.S.-Mexico border, and spoke extensively with Border Patrol agents about the challenges of monitoring the U.S.-Mexico border. Later that afternoon, students explored human rights critiques of current border policies through a visit with the founders of The Water Station, a non-profit humanitarian organization that provides water to migrants who risk death and dehydration when crossing the desert.
This spring, Western State announced the creation of an Immigration Law Certificate, which students may obtain through the completion of -- and success in -- a combination of required coursework, practical skills training, elective courses, and pro bono work.
Western State's Public Service Week April 5th-April 12th
April 4, 2014
The Student Bar Association Public Service Committee has planned over 15 different events for students, faculty and staff to again participate in service to the community. Options include a Blood and Bone Marrow Drives, the MS Walk, Tax Assistance, mentoring high school students, and donation drives for Orangewood Children’s home and Human Options domestic violence shelter. Law student volunteers report and track their contributions and are recognized for their public service at graduation. For full calendar of events click here.
Kaitlyn Daley & Marta Bachynska win honors at National Juvenile Law Moot Court Competition
March 31, 2014
Kudos to 2Ls Kaitlyn Daley and Marta Bachynska, Honors Moot Court Team members, who won the second place trophy for "best brief" in the 2014 spring competition held in Southern California. The problem dealt with immigration enforcement and child welfare issues.
View the rest of the story
Says Kaitlyn Daley of her Moot Court experience, "We advanced to the quarter finals and placed second in the ‘best brief’ competition at the National Juvenile Law Moot Court Competition … the first year legal writing program and the advanced advocacy course at Western State truly prepared us to succeed. We also owe a lot of our success to our faculty advisor and the dedicated faculty and students that assisted us in preparing for the competition."
Treana Allen and Kathleen McHale win Moot Court Honors
March 29, 2014
Congratulations to our Western State Honors Moot Court Team members Treana Allen and Kathleen McHale - they attended The Federal Bar Association's Thurgood A. Marshall Memorial Moot Court Competition in Washington, D.C. last weekend ..... 46 law schools competed and our students won THIRD PLACE for BEST BRIEF! Many thanks to their faculty advisor Professor Udoka Nwanna.
Environmental Law Society hears about developing climate change law
March 26, 2014
Professors Myanna Dellinger and Stacey Sobel gave a presentation to the newly-formed Environmental Law Society on developing climate change law at the sub-national, national and supranational levels, as well as the constitutional implications of such new law.
View the rest of the story
The Western State College of Law ELS is dedicated to providing and promoting a forum for education, advocacy, and scholarship aimed at protecting the environment. Professor Dellinger is the faculty advisor of ELS, which seeks to inform the law school and surrounding community about environmental issues and sponsor engaging activities such as symposia, documentaries, research projects, social and networking events.
Real Estate Practice Certificate Program Launched
March 21, 2014
Western State faculty has approved the creation of a Certificate Program in Real Estate Practice (REPC). Students will earn the Certificate by demonstrating-a distinguished commitment to the practice of real estate law, through their course of study, performance, experiential learning, and pro bono / public service work. This brings to four the number of Certificate options offered, including Immigration Law, Business Law, and Criminal Law. Read more here.
New Certificate Program in Immigration Law Announced
March 20, 2014
A new Certificate Program in Immigration Law has been created and approved by Western State’s faculty, available fall 2014. Students will demonstrate commitment to the practice of Immigration Law by completing 12 required and 6 elective course credits, 5 credits of experiential learning and 25 hours of pro bono legal work to earn the Certificate. Professor Jennifer Koh, Director of the Immigration Clinic, will oversee the new certificate program. Read more here.
Caren Seenauth Represents Western State College of Law at 13th Annual IMG World Congress of Sports
March 19, 2014
Caren Seenauth, 3L and President of the WSCL Entertainment and Sports Law Society, attended the 2014 IMG World Congress of Sports hosted by the Sports Business Journal at the St. Regis Hotel in Dana Point, CA on March 19th and 20th.
View the rest of the story
In attendance, U.S. Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan shared his views on the state of education in America and how sports should be promoted as a means to reducing high school dropout rates and improving education at all levels. Also comprised of panel discussions and interviews, the conference garnered the dozens of senior executives from various organizations in sports, media and entertainment who addressed the evolution of sports business, intellectual property, social media marketing and media rights. Among them were NBA Commissioner, Adam Silver; President of the Los Angeles Lakers, Jeanie Buss; and Chairman and CEO of Legendary Entertainment and part owner of the Pittsburgh Steelers, Thomas Tull.
A recurring theme throughout the conference was the evolution of social media marketing and the growing necessity to cater to the "millennial generation" of tech savvy consumers through an interactive fan experience. Also on the table for discussion – management of intellectual property, a need for environmentally conscious stadium operations and transparency within the NBA. Red Bull’s High Performance Director Andy Walshe explored innovations in technology designed to mimic the cognitive patterns of high performance athletes, a concept best described as "hacking talent." Dick Glover, President and CEO of Funny or Die, discussed how his company thrives outside of the traditional "Hollywood system" and places emphasis on a combination of creative content, social media and selective advertising to create a new category of branded entertainment.
The two-day event is one of the most prominent annual gatherings of sports business leaders. This year’s IMG World Congress was attended by 500 professional attendees, 12 hand-selected student volunteers from across the nation and featured corporate sponsors such as Cartier, Yahoo and Proskauer, the nation’s leading sports law firm.
Western State Alumni Officers of Long Beach Barristers
March 6, 2014
Four Western State Alumni were installed as officers for 2014-2015 in the Long Beach Barristers, a group for practicing lawyers aged 35 and under in Long Beach, CA.: http://longbeachbarristers.com/. The Western State community congratulates our graduates incoming President Christopher Montes De Oca, class of ’06; Vice President Sean Brady, class of "08; Secretary Elisa Guadan, ‘11; and Membership Chair Christy Beard, "06 as they assume their leadership roles in this dynamic young lawyers' organization.
Tatiana Yokoyama, 3L, named Student of the Year by the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association.
January 15, 2014
Tatiana Yokoyama, a third year law student at the Western State College of Law at Argosy University, was awarded the National Student of the Year Award at the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) Annual Conference in Kansas City, Missouri on November 8, 2013. This merit-based scholarship award recognizes demonstrated student leaders in the Asian Pacific American community from across the country.
View the rest of the story
"Thank you to Dean Adams, as well as Western faculty and administration, for encouraging us, students, to contribute our education and experiences to the community," stated Yokoyama, President of the Western State Student Bar Association and the Asian Pacific American Law Student Association. "I am honored to represent Western State at the NAPABA Conference and humbled to receive the National Asian Pacific American Law Student Association (NAPALSA) Student of the Year Award for my public service efforts."
"Tatiana is most deserving of this national honor," stated Patricia Lee-Gulley, Partner at Gordon & Rees, LLP and President of the Orange County Asian American Bar Association (OCAABA). "She has developed extensive public service and leadership experience while attending Western State College of Law, which will prove useful in her legal career."
NAPABA is the national association of Asian Pacific American attorneys, judges, law professors, and law students. NAPABA is comprised of over 40,000 attorneys and local Asian Pacific American bar associations. NAPALSA was founded to promote education, leadership, community awareness/service, communication and interaction amongst Asian Pacific American law students across the country.
Law students win release from detention for clients in Immigration Court bond hearings.
January 15, 2014
Kristalyn Bautista and Angel Lalama, third-year law students participating in the Advanced Immigration Clinic, each represented a client detained under the federal immigration laws. Their efforts led to release or release on bond for their respective clients who were detained under federal immigration laws.
View the rest of the story
Kristalyn Bautista and Angel Lalama represented their respective clients in November before the Los Angeles Immigration Court in bond hearings, to convince an Immigration Judge that the clients were neither a flight risk nor a danger to the community. Both students' performances– which included direct examinations and closing arguments -- produced amazing results for the clients: in Kris's case, her HIV+ client was released on an ankle bracelet and was released in time to spend Thanksgiving with his family. Angel's client was given a bond, which the family is working to meet it so that the client can come home to his wife and family. Both clients will continue to fight their deportations in immigration court, but the results of the bond hearings will enable them to do so while not being physically incarcerated in an immigration detention facility. Said Kris: "This was the best experience of my law school career." Angel stated "I never imagined being able to help people with their real cases while still in law school".
Both law students were supervised in these cases by Professor Munmeeth Soni, staff attorney at the Public Law Center and adjunct professor in the Western State Immigration Clinic.
California Supreme Court cites Professor Philip L. Merkel
December 3, 2013
The California Supreme Court has once again cited Professor Philip L. Merkel's law review article, Physicians Policing Physicians: The Development of Medical Staff Peer Review Law at California Hospitals, in one of the high court's opinions. The article was published in the University of San Francisco Law Review. It discusses substantive and procedural due process requirements hospital medical staffs must follow when attempting to discipline member physicians. The Supreme Court first referenced the article in Mileikowsky v. West Hills Hospital and Medical Center (2009). Recently, the Court cited the article in El-Attar v. Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center (2013). Professor Merkel, who has represented clients in medical staff peer review hearings, intended the article to be a guide for attorneys who practice in the area. The article has been cited in other appellate court opinions, appellate court briefs, and law review articles.
Judge John Nho Nguyen Retires from the Bench
December 2, 2013
The Western State community proudly congratulates alumnus Judge Nguyen on the conclusion of his distinguished career as a Judge on the Orange County Superior Court. Dean Adams and senior faculty were in attendance with over 200 guests at a gala retirement dinner sponsored by OCAABA, Western State, and 14 other organizations in honor of Judge Nguyen. The event was held at the Westin South Coast Plaza Hotel on November 18th. A member of the Western State College Class of 1988, Judge Nguyen was the first Vietnamese Judge to serve in Orange County. He was inducted to the Western State Hall of Fame in 2001, and awarded an Honorary "Doctor of Laws" degree from Western State College in 2008. Judge Nguyen has also taught at Western State as an adjunct faculty member. Western State College is proud to celebrate the legal career of an alumnus who is so accomplished and esteemed.
Govenor Brown Appoints Honorable Sherri Honer To Orange County Superior Court
November 13, 2013
Kudos to Hon. Sherri Honer (Class of 1996) on her appointment as Judge for the Orange County Superior Court by Governor Brown. She joins over 100 active judicial officers in California who are Western State graduates.
Jeffrey Witjas Gives Talk To Entertainment & Sports Law Society
November 12, 2013
Jeffrey Witjas, Senior VP, Talent, at APA Talent and Literary Agency, spoke at Western State's Entertainment & Sports Law Society on Friday, October 4. Graduate of the Class of 1979, Mr Witjas characterizes his role as a talent agent as "one of the most exciting jobs anyone can have" and credits his law background for giving him "the balance and the ability to be reasonable and understanding" required for his success.
Western State Graduate Named President Of The Beverly Hills Bar Aassociation
November 11, 2013
The Western State community congratulates Diane Karpman, class of 1974, Principal of Karpman and Associates, who was recently installed as the 82nd President of the Beverly Hills Bar Association.
Western State Professors & Students Complete Marathon
November 10, 2013
Professor Philip Merkel and three of his Torts I students, Lauren Calhoon, Lauren Ruvalcaba and Jamie Newton, completed the Long Beach ICB Half Marathon on October 13, 2013. Professor Jennifer Koh also ran the 13.1 mile course. Pictured after the finish are (from the left) Ms. Newton, Prof. Merkel, and Ms. Ruvalcaba.
Professor Dellinger's Article On Climate Change To Be Presented At International Law Forums In New York.
November 9, 2013
Professor Myanna Dellinger's forthcoming law review article on climate change treaty negotiations and potential adoption, soon to be published in the Fordham International Law Journal, has been selected from more than 200 submissions from 36 countries for presentation at the meeting of the American Society of International Law at New York University School of Law in early November. A reception at the United Nations Headquarters will follow. The article is entitled Narrowed Constellations in a Supranational Climate Change Regime Complex: The "Magic Number" is Four, and analyzes the realities of climate change treaty negotiations and potential adoption.
Western State Invests in Student Futures
November 8, 2013
We are delighted to announce that we have been invited to provide membership in the Orange County Bar Association for all current students and recent graduates. This will provide our entire student body with previously unavailable networking opportunities with potential employers, students from other nearby law schools, and practitioners from around the county..
Incoming Spring Class Students Meet Recent Alumni
November 7, 2013
On Thursday, November 14th, Western State College hosted a dinner for students already admitted to the January 2014 incoming class at Zov's Bistro in Tustin. Students were able to bring guests and meet personally with faculty and recent alumni in a social setting. We were pleased to give our incoming students the opportunity to discuss the study and career of law in an atmosphere that was warm and relaxed.