Law School Confers 145 Degrees; Judge Thompson Delivers Commencement Address
Judge Myron H. Thompson reminded University of Alabama School of Law graduates they are following in the footsteps of lawyers who have transformed law in the state, the nation and around the world.
“It cannot be overstated that you law graduates have completed not only one of the finest, top-tiered law schools in the country, but a law school that can unabashedly boast graduating some of the finest lawyers not just in the state of Alabama but in this country,” Thompson said. “Lawyers who have literally changed the nature of the law for this state, this country, and in some regards, even for the world.”
Judge Thompson, Senior Judge, U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Alabama, delivered the commencement address, and the Law School conferred 139 Juris Doctor degrees and six LL.M. degrees Saturday at Coleman Coliseum.
Law Students Secure Federal, State Clerkships
In 2015, 12 UA Law students and graduates clerked for federal judges and 12 clerked for state judges. The position requires excellent legal research and writing skills and provides a rare glimpse into a legal mind.
Holly Caraway: Serving the State
Holly Caraway (’10) serves as chief counsel in the Office of the Senate Minority Leader in the Alabama legislature and is careful not to fall into the partisan divide.
She prefers to build bridges, educate and enlighten anyone who may not view politics or policy the way she does. The only way she knows how to do that is through forming relationships, and she builds those relationships on honesty and respect. For Caraway, cultivating relationships is a requirement of the position. Without them, it’s unlikely any legislation would find its way to the calendar, let alone a committee.
“If you get bogged down in the partisan politics, then the voiceless are never going to have a voice,” she said.
On Campus Interviews
Registration is now open for Fall 2016 On-Campus Interviews. The Career Services Office helps employers find 2Ls for summer positions and 3Ls and alumni for post-graduation employment. Please contact the Assistant Dean for Career Services, Lezlie A. Griffin (firstname.lastname@example.org), for more information on recruitment opportunities. The CSO arranges on-campus and video-conference interviews, collects resumes and posts positions on its electronic job board. All CSO services are free of charge.
LL.M. Concentrations in Taxation and Business Transactions Offered Online
The Law School offers two exceptional LL.M. programs through live, interactive Internet technologies. Students receive skills-based instruction, taught by respected professors and practitioners throughout the country, without having to leave their offices.
The tax program permits students to focus on courses in estate planning or business tax. The course of study for the business program is interdisciplinary in fields of law and business – including tax, finance, intellectual property, entrepreneurship and traditional corporate classes. For more information, or to apply to either concentration, visit www.alabamallm.com or contact Associate Dean for Online Graduate Programs and Director of CLE Daniel Powell.
Alumni are invited to participate in training opportunities throughout the state.
Mandatory Professionalism Seminar for New Admittees Tuscaloosa
Send Class Notes to Alumni News.
PROFESSOR BILL ANDREEN’s book chapter, “Dynamic Federalism and the Clean Water Act: Completing the Task,” was published in The Law and Policy of Environmental Federalism (Kalyani Robbins ed., Edward Elgar Publishing 2016). His book chapter on “Alabama Water Law” was also published in 4 Waters and Water Rights (Amy Kelley ed., LexisNexis/Matthew Bender 2016). In addition, Professor Andreen made a presentation titled “Waters of the United States: Enhancing the Ability of the Clean Water Act to Protect the Nation’s Waters” at the Water Policy Summit, which was held at the National Water Center in Tuscaloosa on April 8, 2016.
PROFESSOR RICHARD DELGADO’s article, “Why Obama: An Interest-Convergence Explanation of the Country’s First Black President,” made two additional SSRN top-ten download lists, one for Comparative Law and another for Political Behavior. A second article, “Waiting for a Second Cargo Shipment: Education as Great Equalizer,”made five different top-ten lists. Delgado published “The Shadows and the Fire” in the Alabama Civil Liberties and Civil Rights Law Review and sent a new edition of Critical Race Theory: An Introduction, co-authored with PROFESSOR JEAN STEFANCIC, to their publisher, NYU Press. This popular primer (81,400 copies sold) is scheduled to come out in midsummer 2017. Professor Delgado, who is serving as a Faculty Fellow in the Texas Institute for Advanced Study, took part in a formal induction ceremony along with 10 others from the 2016 class. Comprised of senior faculty from top universities around the country, the group consisted of eight scientists, one French literature professor from Harvard, and Delgado. Each Fellow passed under a bridge of swords formed by the Texas A&M cadet corps and received a 15-pound brass replica of Rodin’s The Thinker—a sort of academic Heisman Trophy.
PROFESSOR SHAHAR DILLBARY’s most recent article, Causation Actually, was accepted for publication with the University of Georgia Law Review as the lead article for issue 51 (the article is available at http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2729476). The article debunks the consensus that in concerted action, concurrent causes and alternative liability situations, the actual causation requirement is always missing. While courts and scholars insist that in these cases tort law holds liable parties who clearly did not cause the victim’s harm, this article offers a novel approach. Using a simple model and applying it to leading decisions, it shows that a party who did not and could not even potentially injure the victim could nevertheless be a but-for reason for the harm. The article also challenges claims that causation theories like concerted action, substantial factor and alternative liability are fair to the victim or that they are designed to deter actors from engaging in “antisocial” activities. In deviation from the prior literature, this article reveals that these causation theories reduce the parties’ incentives to take care and result in more, rather than fewer, accidents. This article further shows, despite lip service to the contrary, tort law promotes harmful activities that judges declare immoral, antisocial and illegal. The article argues, however, that in many cases this result can be justified on efficiency grounds. The article concludes that the but-for test should have a larger role in causation analysis, and it provides a number of policy recommendations to courts and lawmakers. In April, Professor Dillbary attended the ABA Spring Antitrust Annual meeting in Washington D.C. While in D.C., Professor Dillbary met with a number of representatives of antitrust agencies, including representatives of the Federal Trade Commission and the Department of Justice as well as antitrust lawyers, scholars and enforcers from Germany, Italy and Turkey. He also met with current and former students of UA Law School’s Externship Program in Washington, D.C. Professor Dillbary has been recently invited and is currently scheduled to present his scholarship on the interface between torts and contracts at the Society for Institutional & Organizational Economics in Paris.
PROFESSOR PAUL HORWITZ is completing a semester as a visiting professor at Harvard Law School, where he has been teaching a First Amendment course and a seminar titled “Oaths and the Constitution.” While there, he has been a guest co-teacher in a seminar on advanced research topics in law and religion taught by Mark Tushnet; participated in a book panel at Harvard on Catherine Ross’s new book, Lessons in Censorship: How Schools and Courts Subvert Students’ First Amendment Rights; participated in a book panel at Boston University School of Law on Jay Wexler’s book, When God Isn’t Green: A World-Wide Journey to Places Where Religious Practice and Environmentalism Collide; presented his forthcoming paper “Against Martyrdom: A Liberal Argument for Accommodation of Religion” at a Harvard faculty workshop and at the school’s Public Law Workshop; and served as a keynote speaker at the annual Harvard Law School Interfaith Conference.
Professor Horwitz also traveled to the University of Western Ontario to deliver its 2016 Coxford Lecture, “Honour, Oaths, and the Rule of Law”; a version of his lecture will be published in the Canadian Journal of Law and Jurisprudence. Professor Horwitz participated in a roundtable at Notre Dame Law School in April, hosted by the law school’s Program on Church, State, and Society, on Kathleen Brady’s new book The Distinctiveness of Religion in American Law: Rethinking Religion Clause Jurisprudence. His article, “Against Martyrdom: A Liberal Argument for Accommodation of Religion,” a draft of which is available at http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2754635, will shortly be published in the Notre Dame Law Review. His article "Religious Institutionalism–Why Now?," co-authored with Professor Nelson Tebbe, has been published by Oxford University Press in the edited collection The Rise of Corporate Religious Liberty (Micah Schwartzman, Chad Flanders, and Zoe Robinson, eds.).
PROFESSOR PAM PIERSON was selected for membership in the XXXI, an honor society recognizing leadership at the University of Alabama. Professor Pierson completed work on 14 one-hour programs of The Business of Being a Lawyer (BBL). These programs were produced by Heilman Productions, Inc., of Los Angeles, California, and feature interviews with renowned lawyers and judges, as well as graphics, narration, and actors. The programs cover economic trends in the legal profession, issues of emotional intelligence relevant to the practice of law, personal financial planning basics relevant to lawyers, and strategies for being an effective “free agent” throughout one’s legal career in light of the fact that the average lawyer changes jobs seven times in a career. Alabama CLE will market these programs as on-line CLE programs and law school courses. All proceeds will go to UA law student scholarships. Professor Pierson published "Economics, EQ and Finances: New Frontiers in Legal Education" in the Journal of Legal Education in May 2016.