February 2017


Law School Dedicates New Alabama Law Institute Reception Area

The Law School celebrated the renovation of the reception area of the Alabama Law Institute and named it the Thomas L. Jones Reception Area.

During the ceremony, Dean Mark E. Brandon expressed his gratitude for  Professor Jones and for the profound effect he has had on the Law School.

“As a teacher and as an administrator, he has had an enormous impact on more than three generations of students,” he said. “I know. I was in his classroom, and I was his student.”

Othni Lathram, Director of the Alabama Law Institute, also was a student in Professor Jones’s classroom.

“He demonstrates to all those watching that a lawyer should be prepared, knowledgeable, thorough, persuasive and firm — but all the while, most importantly, being gentle, calm and compassionate. He is a gentleman of the first order.”

Alumni, friends and family donated nearly $165,000 to the project, and a portion of the funds was used to create the Thomas L. Jones Endowed Scholarship.

Law School Welcomes Students from the Australian National University College of Law

Nine law students from the Australian National University College of Law arrived in Tuscaloosa on January 7 for a five-week visit at the Law School.

The ANU students are taking a class on Comparative Approaches to Counter-Terrorism Law and a Survey on U.S. Law, said Professor William Andreen, Director of the UA-ANU Exchange Program. The comparative class, which is also being offered to Alabama law students, is being team-taught by Professor Jenny Carroll and Dr. Mark Nolan from the ANU College of Law.

During their stay in Tuscaloosa, the students will visit the Civil Rights Institute in Birmingham, the Alabama Supreme Court, the Tuscaloosa County Jail, the Rosa Parks Museum and Bryant-Denny Stadium.

Monet Gaines: Serving the State

Monet McCorvey Gaines (‘01), an Assistant Attorney General in the Opinions Division, answers complex questions from elected officials and state agencies about Alabama law.

She has addressed questions about whether a deceased candidate could remain on a general election ballot, whether a county commission has authority to change district boundaries for an election and how many elector signatures are required to qualify a candidate for office. In each case, she researched and analyzed The Code of Alabama and drafted an opinion that was reviewed by a committee of attorneys.

“It’s a privilege to help the state in this manner,” Gaines said. “I’ve always seen it as an opportunity to help elected officials and governing officials understand their authority and their roles better. I can’t think of a better way of giving back.”


The 2017 annual Farrah Law Alumni Society Banquet is scheduled for Friday, February 10, at Haven in downtown Birmingham. The banquet will honor Judge Patrick Higginbotham (’61), the 2017 Sam W. Pipes Distinguished Alumnus Award recipient.

The Law School will also celebrate the permanent endowment of the following funds:

  • Carey J. Chitwood Endowed Scholarship Fund
  • Judge Frank M. Johnson, Jr. and Mrs. Ruth Jenkins Johnson Memorial Endowed Scholarship
  • Judge Frank M. Johnson, Jr. Memorial Endowed Lecture on Constitutional Rights and Liberties
  • John C. H. Miller Endowed Scholarship
  • Proctor Family Endowed Scholarship
  • Edward P. Turner, Jr. Family Endowed Scholarship
  • Wilmer & Lee, P.A. Endowed Scholarship

Public Interest Institute Fundraiser

Join us Thursday, March 2, 6 p.m. until 9 p.m. on the rooftop of the historic Kress Building, 301 19th Street North, Birmingham, for a fundraising event featuring food, drinks and a silent auction. Tickets are $25,with all proceeds benefiting the law school’s Public Interest Summer Grant program, which provides funding for students working in unpaid public service positions during the summer.

Law School Announces Symposium on The Legacy of To Kill a Mockingbird

The University of Alabama School of Law is pleased to announce the presenters for the symposium on The Legacy of To Kill a Mockingbird: Advocacy in an Unjust Society. Join us as the nation’s foremost experts on the intersection of law and literature discuss the moral significance of Lee’s work. The symposium, sponsored by the Alabama Law Review, will be held 8:30 a.m.-5:15 p.m. Friday, March 3, in the Bedsole Moot Court Room.

Confirmed Presenters

  • Robert Atkinson, Florida State University College of Law
  • Devon Carbado, UCLA School of Law
  • Judy Cornett, University of Tennessee College of Law
  • Wayne Flynt, Author, Historian, and Professor Emeritus at Auburn University
  • John Grisham, Author and Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction Winner
  • Paul Horwitz, The University of Alabama School of Law
  • Richard McAdams, University of Chicago Law School
  • Anil MujumdarPartner, Zarzaur Mujumdar & Debrosse

BLSA Banquet

The Black Law Student Association will hold its 16th Annual BLSA Banquet March 23 at the Birmingham Museum of Art. The event will begin with a cocktail hour at 6 p.m.with the banquet beginning at 7 p.m. Purchase tickets here and RSVP for the event here. For more information, contact marie.troxler@law.ua.edu

Alumni Weekend and Class Reunions

Please join Dean Mark E. Brandon and UA Law faculty and staff on April 22 for an Alumni Picnic. The picnic is open to all graduates and their families, but will provide special opportunities to celebrate Class Reunions honoring the classes of 1967, 1977, 1987, 1992, 1997 and 2007. Visit Alumni Weekend for more information.

Class Notes

Alex Brown (’11) has been named the managing partner for Morgan & Morgan in Birmingham.

Kane Burnette (‘09) has been named partner at Bradley.

Justin Burney (’08) has been named a shareholder at Maynard Cooper & Gale.

Marcus Chatterton (’07) has been named partner at Balch & Bingham.  

Leigh Davis (97) has been named vice president over customer services at Alabama Power.

Chris Dawson (13) has been re-appointed as chair for the Central Florida Dance Marathon.

Stephen D. Davis (’08) has been named a shareholder at Maynard Cooper & Gale.

Suzanne A. Fleming (91) has been named Of Counsel at Lightfoot Franklin White.

David H. Humber (’08) has been named a shareholder at Maynard Cooper & Gale.

Adam Israel (’09) has been named partner at Balch & Bingham.

Ayla Luers (15) has joined Holcombe Bomar, PA as an associate in the firm’s Litigation Group in Spartanburg, South Carolina.

Richard M. Nolen (’84) was selected among Georgia Trend magazine’s Legal Elite. He was recognized as one of the leading family law practitioners in the state.

Day Peake (05) has been named counsel at Phelps Dunbar in Mobile.

Rachel Pickett (11) has been named in-house counsel at Murphy Oil USA, Inc.

Ben Presley (10) has been named partner at Starnes Davis Florie.

Brian Robbins (12) has joined the Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation Practice Group at Maynard Cooper & Gale.

Roman Shaul (’98) has been appointed as a Montgomery County Circuit Judge.

Jim Sturdivant (87) was appointed as Municipal Court Judge for the City of Vestavia Hills.

Jon Sundock (90) has been named Chief Legal Officer at PhyMed Healthcare Group in Nashville.

Lauren Davis Tice (07) has joined the Workers’ Compensation, Employment Liability, Product Liability and General Insurance Litigation practices at Huie.

Alex Wood (09) has been named partner at Starnes Davis Florie.

Breanna Young (10) has been named partner at Starnes Davis Florie.


Frank M. Bainbridge (’56) contributed $12,500 to the Bainbridge-Mims Professorship of Law.

Brasfield & Gorrie donated $50,000 to the James F. Hughey, Jr. Endowed Scholarship.

Charles F. Carr (’77) donated $5,000 to the Charles F. Carr Endowed Scholarship.

Dr. Cecil Mackey (’58) contributed $100,000 to the M. Cecil Mackey Endowed Scholarship.

Porterfield, Harper, Mills, Motlow & Ireland donated $5,000 to the Porterfield, Harper, Mills, Motlow & Ireland Scholarship.

Protective Life Corporation contributed $5,833 to the Judge Frank M. Johnson, Jr. and Mrs. Ruth Jenkins Johnson Memorial Endowed Fund.

Faculty Notes

PROFESSOR JENNY CARROLL was elected to a six-year term on the Executive Committee of the Criminal Justice Section of the AALS.

PROFESSOR RICHARD DELGADO and PROFESSOR JEAN STEFANCIC published “Mea Culpa:  What Do We Regret and Why?” in the Texas A&M Law Review.  The article reviews a recent book by Steven Bender on legal missteps such as Plessy v. Ferguson and Buck v. Bell. Their article, “Critical Perspectives on Police, Policing, and Mass Incarceration,” (104 Geo. L.J. 1531 (2016)), made several SSRN Top Ten lists: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2876702. SSRN’s management notified Professor Delgado that he was in the top 10 percent of authors by downloads this month; he is also among the top 2.6 percent all-time in any category.

Professor Delgado published an introduction to a book on critical race theory in education, “Urban Educational Identity:  Seeing Students on Their Own Terms,” by Sara M. Childers.

On February 16, the SMU Law Review will hold a one-day symposium examining  alternative dispute resolution in light of an earlier article by Delgado in the Wisconsin Law Review warning of the risk of prejudice when a disempowered disputant opts for non-formal resolution of a complaint against a more empowered party.

PROFESSOR RONALD KROTOSZYNSKI, JR. presented “‘The Devil Is in the Details’:  On the Central Importance of the Public/Private Distinction When Attempting to Reconcile Religious Liberty and Equality.” His presentation was part of a symposium on “Faith, Sexuality, and the Meaning of Freedom:  A Dialogue,” hosted by the Yale Law School, in New Haven, Connecticut, on January 13-14, 2017.  The conference papers will be published in a forthcoming edited volume to be published by Cambridge University Press.

PROFESSOR STEPHEN RUSHIN’s new book, “Federal Intervention in American Police Departments,” will be published by Cambridge University Press in February. He was quoted in The Wall Street Journal, the Chicago Sun-Times, and VICE News on how the Trump Administration may affect police reform. He was interviewed for radio programs on the same topic with KQED (San Francisco’s NPR affiliate) and Bloomberg Radio. Additionally, he presented his research at the University of Georgia School of Law, and he was invited to present later this semester at the University of California Berkeley School of Law and Duke University Law School. Finally, he was named as a finalist for the President’s Faculty Research Award at the University of Alabama.

PROFESSOR ADAM STEINMAN published “Comparative Avoidance” in JOTWELL (Jan. 5, 2017), http://courtslaw.jotwell.com/comparative-avoidance/.

PROFESSOR FRED VARS’s op-ed about his proposal to reduce gun suicide appeared in The Washington Post: http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/a-no-guns-list-that-could-prevent-suicide/2017/01/13/b87db192-b5c4-11e6-959c-172c82123976_story.html

The views, opinions, and conclusions expressed by faculty in their publications or research activities are those of the author and not necessarily those of The University of Alabama or its officers and trustees. The content of faculty publications has not been approved by the University of Alabama, and the author is solely responsible for that content.