Gensler, Dodd Headline Financial Regulatory Reform Symposium
The Hon. Gary Gensler, chairman of the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), and former Sen. Christopher J. Dodd (D-Conn.) anchored a high-powered lineup of speakers and panelists Jan. 14 at a full-day financial regulatory reform symposium at GW focusing on the impact of the historic Dodd-Frank Act.
Nearly 250 participants filled the Jack Morton Auditorium for "The Shape of Things to Come: The Financial Regulatory Landscape in the Post Dodd-Frank Era," co-sponsored by GW's Center for Law, Economics & Finance (C-LEAF) and the School of Business Center for Real Estate and Urban Analysis.
Former Sen. Christopher J. Dodd, who presented the annual Manuel F. Cohen Memorial Lecture, shared insights into the development of the signature financial reform bill that bears his name. (right) "Markets work best when they are transparent, open, and competitive," said CFTC Chairman Gary Gensler, who delivered the keynote address at the symposium.
Mr. Gensler kicked off the symposium with a keynote speech discussing the Dodd-Frank financial regulatory reform act, which President Barack Obama signed into law in July. The sweeping legislation, proposed by Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) and Mr. Dodd in response to the recent financial crisis, will institute far-reaching reforms, increasing transparency and reducing risk in the fast-growing derivatives (swaps) marketplace.
"Markets work best when they are transparent, open, and competitive," said Mr. Gensler, who took over the reins of the CFTC in May 2009. He previously served as a senior adviser to the formar chairman of the U.S. Senate Banking Committee, Sen. Paul Sarbanes (D-Md.), on the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, and at the U.S. Department of the Treasury as undersecretary of domestic finance and assistant secretary of financial markets.
Presenting a brief history of the derivatives market, which was largely unregulated for the past three decades, Mr. Gensler said, "The Dodd-Frank Act includes essential reforms that bring sunshine and diversity to the opaque swaps markets. Economists and policymakers have for decades recognized that market transparency benefits the public. The more transparent a marketplace is, the more liquid it is for standardized instruments, the more competitive it is, and the lower the costs for hedgers, borrowers, and, ultimately, their customers.
"We have a long tradition at the CFTC of bringing transparency on a weekly basis to the futures marketplace," stated Mr. Gensler, who looks forward to doing the same over the coming years in the swaps marketplace. "Congress moved forward with the historic Dodd-Frank Act…to make the swaps marketplace broader and more open," he said. "It is our mission at the CFTC to fulfill Congress' mandate."
Former Sen. Dodd took the stage in the afternoon, delivering the annual Manuel F. Cohen Memorial Lecture—an endowed lecture series that serves as a living memorial to Manuel Cohen, a former chairman of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) who taught at GW Law School for nearly two decades.
A member of Congress for the past 36 years, Mr. Dodd, who did not seek re-election in 2010, chaired the Senate Banking Committee at the time of the 2008 financial collapse. The author and sponsor of the Dodd-Frank Act, the nation's most sweeping financial reform act since the Great Depression, Mr. Dodd described the two-year process of working to fix the country's broken financial system and shared insights into the development of the signature financial reform bill that bears his name.
Much of the framework governing America's financial system was drawn up nearly a century ago, he explained. The goal of the financial reform package was, therefore, to establish a new, improved regulatory structure reflecting the reality of 21st- century financial services without overly restricting the sector.
"You want a robust financial services sector that is out there being creative, being innovative, driving growth and powering the economy," he said. "But, at the same time, you want to make sure that the horse doesn't run away from us. Financial regulation has simply failed to keep pace with the times."
Mr. Dodd described a 2008 meeting with U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Henry Paulson, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, and other members of Congress, where Mr. Bernanke discussed just how tenuous the nation's financial situation was. "All of the oxygen left the room when the chairman of the Federal Reserve told us that unless we acted within days, the entire financial system in the United States could melt down," he recalled.
Mr. Dodd ended his speech with a call to action directed to the many law students in the room. He said that he had been inspired to join the Peace Corps after attending John F. Kennedy's presidential inauguration and urged the students to strive to "be part of something bigger" than themselves. "I hope you'll consider committing yourselves to a life of service," he said. "You'll have so much fun and will make a difference."
The day-long symposium also included panel discussions on deciphering the Dodd-Frank Act, the central bank's role in reshaping U.S. banking and the economic order, financial innovation, and new roles for government financial institutions.
Lauding "the extraordinary amount of legal talent and knowledge gathered in one room" for the symposium, Lawrence E. Mitchell, executive director of C-LEAF and GW's Theodore Reinhart Professor of Law, expressed confidence that the event would be "another stunning success in the young life of C-LEAF," a GW-based think tank focusing on the study and debate of major issues in economic and financial law. The center hosts events at the Law School throughout the year, including recent conferences on the Bernie Madoff investment scandal, proxy access, and the financial crisis, as well as junior faculty workshops and an international junior faculty paper competition.
"Conferences like this are tremendously valuable," Mr. Mitchell said in his opening remarks. "We are looking forward to another great event in our ongoing conversation to help our economy and our world become a better place."
—Jamie L. Freedman
Center for Law, Economics & Finance Dissects the Dodd-Frank Act
Office of the Comptroller of the Currency First Senior Deputy Comptroller and Chief Counsel Julie L. Williams presents during "Consumer Protection: Stuck in Neutral or Full Speed Ahead?" with Jonathan A. Buchman, vice president and general counsel, E*TRADE Bank; Sandra F. Braunstein, director, Federal Reserve Board Division of Consumer and Community Affairs; Richard H. Neiman, New York State Superintendent of Banks; and Lynne B. Barr, partner, Goodwin Procter LLP.
C-LEAF's second annual financial regulatory reform symposium on Nov. 12 assessed the likely impact of the Dodd-Frank Act, a massive 2,300-plus-page law, focusing especially on the areas of consumer protection and the regulation of large, complex, "too big to fail" financial institutions. The symposium posed the question of whether the act adequately addresses the causes of the recent crisis, and if not, whether it goes too far or not far enough. The Dodd-Frank Act is the most far-reaching piece of financial services legislation enacted since the Great Depression.
Governor Daniel K. Tarullo, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, spoke about the need to increase mortgage modifications, reforming minimum capital requirements in regard to the implementation of Basel III, and even announced a new dividend policy for large bank holding companies.
"The Dodd-Frank Act and the Road Ahead for Financial Regulatory Reform" featured two panels and keynote addresses by Gov. Daniel K. Tarullo, of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, and H. Rodgin Cohen, senior chairman, Sullivan & Cromwell LLP, New York, N.Y.
"I note that while last year's conference was called 'Regulatory Reform at the Crossroads,' this year's event is entitled 'The Dodd-Frank Act and the Road Ahead for Financial Regulatory Reform'," said Gov. Tarullo. "The metaphor of a long road ahead following key decisions in Dodd-Frank is an apt one for the Federal Reserve and other regulatory agencies that will, over the next 15 to 20 months, complete implementation of that bill through scores of regulations."
Professorial Lecturer in Law and E*TRADE Bank Vice President and General Counsel John A. Buchman organized the symposium with the help of students Caroline D. Pham, Parisa Manteghi, Stuart Shroff, and Amanda Jabour, and alumni Sarah Elliott, Helen Y. Lee, Carly Grey, and Emmanuel Cruz.
To view webcasts and photo albums of the event, visit www.law.gwu.edu/Academics/research_centers/C-LEAF/Pages/FinancialSymposium.aspx
Criminal Justice News
John Marshall Law School Professor Jonathan Rapping, JD '95, SCHR founder Steve Bright, and Venable partner Robert Wilkins at the awards ceremony
GW Law Helps Celebrate the D.C. Public Defender Services
This year's Southern Center for Human Rights (SCHR) Frederick Douglass Award was presented to the Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia (PDS) for 50 years of commitment to excellence, justice, and respect for the dignity of every person. Members of the GW Law community attended the awards ceremony.
Grand Jury 2.0
In November, Professor Roger Anthony Fairfax published Grand Jury 2.0: Modern Perspectives on the Grand Jury. The book and the scholarship contained inside grew out of the "Grand Jury Roundtable" event Professor Fairfax hosted in 2008 that brought leading grand jury scholars, prominent state and federal judges, and practitioners involved in high-profile grand jury investigations to discuss the issues at GW Law.
Associate Dean Susan L. Karamanian, fourth from left, a member of the gala committee, hosted a table of students and faculty at the annual gala celebrating civil rights.
A Debate on Decriminalizing Marijuana
The GW Student Chapter of the Federalist Society and the Black Law Students Association co-hosted "Should a Joint Send You to the Joint?: A Debate on Decriminalizing Marijuana" in October. The discussion featured Professor Paul Butler, associate dean for faculty development and Carville Dickinson Benson Research Professor of Law, and William Otis, former counsel, Drug Enforcement Administration. It was moderated by Interim Dean Gregory Maggs.
"Volunteer Counsel for Death Row Inmates: Lessons and Experiences"
In October, the American Bar Association's Death Penalty Representation Project hosted a panel discussion at the Law School to educate students on the value of pro bono work—always an important endeavor but even more so in the cases of hundreds of unrepresented people on death row. Death Penalty Representation Project Director Robin Maher (standing), also a professorial lecturer in law at GW, provided information on the project and its clients and moderated a discussion with Associate Dean Susan L. Karamanian, Amanda Raines, BuckleySandler LLP, and Tom Ross, Sidley Austin LLP, all of whom have worked on pro bono death penalty cases.
Padilla and Beyond
The recent Supreme Court case Padilla v. Kentucky has important impacts in the criminal justice world, particularly concerning issues of collateral consequences. In August, the American Bar Association's Criminal Justice Section produced a video at the Newseum to aid attorneys on these complicated evolving issues. In addition to explaining the ABA's Collateral Consequences Survey Projects, the video features a panel moderated by Professor Stephen A. Saltzburg (far left). The panel discussed legal and constitutional implications, ethical and professional obligations, and practical and systemic implications under the groundbreaking ruling.
GW Pro Bono Program Takes On BP Oil Spill
A unique project came together last summer after students approached Lerner Family Associate Dean for Public Interest and Public Service Law Alan B. Morrison about contributing legal help to the BP oil spill disaster in the Gulf of Mexico.
"In recent years, GW students have gone to New Orleans on winter break to volunteer their services to work on the lingering after-effects of Katrina, but that would have been almost six months away, and these students wanted to do something now," Dean Morrison wrote on the Law School's blog, "20th & H."
He explained that "their request sparked an idea" to help long-time associate Ken Feinberg, currently serving as the government-appointed administrator of the BP Deepwater Horizon Disaster Victim Compensation Fund.
Students volunteered time and received pro bono credit doing legal research for Kenneth Feinberg, the BP special master in charge of the $20 billion victims' compensation fund. The GW Law students looked at the issues from the claimants' perspective.
After meeting with Mr. Feinberg to discuss it further, Dean Morrison—together with Associate Dean for Environmental Law Lee Paddock and Assistant Dean for Public Interest and Public Service Law David M. Johnson—immediately had about 10 students begin conducting research on these vital and timely issues.
In November, the students presented some of their findings to Mr. Feinberg who came to the Law School to hear them. The two-hour roundtable talk included discussions about memos, claims, proximity, causation, evidence, damage, damage corroboration, statutory interpretation, mass torts, and policy.
"It was extremely rewarding and exciting to have the opportunity to present our research to Mr. Feinberg, the expert named by President Obama to oversee the claims determinations," said 2L Margaret Pollard who helped research claims determinations for people affected by the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. "I was particularly impressed with how personable Mr. Feinberg is and how receptive he was to listening to all of the students' research and ideas."
Mr. Feinberg said he was equally impressed with the students.
"The whole program rises on your research," he told the students. "This has been extraordinarily helpful to me."
The pro bono team is composed of students: Michael Onufer, Chris York, Daniel Singer, and Margaret Pollard (researched coverage issues), Madeline Stano, Johanna Hariharan, and Chiara Pappalardo (researched offset issues), and Tiffany Lee, Derek Wagner, and Steven Dean (researched tax issues). Read more of Dean Morrison's thoughts on the project at GW Law's "20th & H" blog: 20thandh.org
DV LEAP Victory
With the help of pro bono co-counsel from Paul Hastings, GW Law's Domestic Violence Legal Empowerment and Appeals Project (DV LEAP) recently won an appeal in the D.C. Court of Appeals, reversing the trial court's denial of a civil protection order to a client. The abuser in this case had claimed that his violence was an act of self-defense during two arguments with the victim.
Attorneys for the victim argued that the case was especially troubling because the trial court decided to accept the abuser's self-defense claim despite his failure to take the stand and testify. The trial court relied instead on what the abuser said in his closing argument, but these statements were not testimony and were not subject to any cross-examination. Had this been a serious defense, attorneys argued, he should and could have testified about the facts. Since he chose not to, it violated their client's due process rights for the court to rely on untested assertions made after the trial was essentially completed.
"DV LEAP's victory on behalf of the appellant is also significant for the many unrepresented victims of domestic violence who turn to the court for protection orders," said DV LEAP Executive Director Joan Meier. "The procedural fairness of court protective order hearings, in particular the right to cross-examine the alleged abuser, is essential to the effectiveness and credibility of these orders."
Inaugural Law School Service Day
The GW Public Interest and Public Service Law Program hosted more than 60 incoming 1Ls to help paint, repair, and garden at D.C.'s Ballou Senior High School. The service day, which took place before orientation began in August, was part of the first Public Interest and Public Service Law Pre-Orientation Program. The event also included speakers and visits to the D.C. Moultrie Courthouse and the D.C. Jail. The event was organized by Lerner Family Associate Dean for Public Interest and Public Service Law Alan B. Morrison and Assistant Dean for Public Interest and Public Service Law David M. Johnson. To view more photos, visit gwlaw.smugmug.com.
Rothwell Family Foundation Gift
GW Law received a $125,000 gift from the Rothwell Family Foundation to sponsor the annual GW Giles Sutherland Rich Memorial Moot Court Competition in the name of Rothwell, Figg, Ernst & Manbeck, P.C. The intellectual property firm was co-founded by G. Franklin Rothwell, JD '56, who serves as chairman and member.
Proceeds from the gift will be used to assist in funding the competition, the related reception, and the cash awards for the members of the winning team the "Rothwell, Figg, Ernst & Manbeck Awards"). In addition, proceeds will assist in funding the two final teams as they move on to take part in the national competition sponsored by the American Intellectual Property Law Association.
The gift is just one way the firm and the Law School are forging connections. Frank Rothwell is a longtime member of the GW IP Advisory Board, and his firm, Rothwell Figg, recently became an IP Benefactor. Two members of the firm—Joe Hynds, JD '91, and Marty Zoltick—are adjunct professors at the Law School. In October, Rothwell Figg hosted an event designed to give students tips on how to succeed as an associate at a law firm. Recently, alumnus and Rothwell Figg attorney Jimmy Chang, JD '09, served as volunteer judge to help competitors prepare their arguments in the Giles Rich competition.
"The Law School's relationship with Rothwell Figg is a great example of how educators and employers can work together to benefit the IP community," Associate Dean for Intellectual Property Law Studies John M. Whealan said. "With the help of Rothwell Figg, we are training and encouraging excellent attorneys, who will go on to do outstanding work."
The final round of this year's competition was held Jan. 18 in the Jacob Burns Moot Court Room. Finalists Brian Prince and Nicholas Kunz for the petitioner and Alexander Varond and Thomas Yeh for the respondent argued before a distinguished panel of judges: Hon. Randall R. Rader, JD '78, chief judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit; Hon. Kent A. Jordan of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 3rd Circuit; and Associate Dean John M. Whealan.
Both finalist teams were invited to represent GW at the Giles Rich Regional this spring, and will be coached by Dean Whealan.
GW Law Pays Tribute to Jamie A. Grodsky
On Sept. 20, family, friends, colleagues, and students of the late Professor Jamie A. Grodsky gathered at the Jack Morton Auditorium to pay tribute to her life and legacy in a memorial service and reception. Among the attendees were Jamie's father, Dr. Gerold G. Grodsky, and sister, Andrea Huber, who spoke eloquently and shared warm memories. Professor Grodsky passed away in May 2010.
Former Dean Frederick M. Lawrence and GW President Steven Knapp offered remarks about the cherished faculty member, as did Law School faculty and Jamie's former colleagues from other schools and organizations. Each speaker paid tribute to Jamie's good humor, brilliant mind, love of teaching, respect for nature, and beautiful smile.
In honor of Jamie's love for music, a group of GW Law faculty, staff, and family members were joined by the GW Law student a cappella group, Promissory Notes, to present several musical selections throughout the program.
Professor Bob Brauneis, who helped organize the memorial and directed the music, said the event was an effort by the GW Law community to honor Jamie and her lasting gifts.
"We all loved Jamie for her mind, but also for her heart, and we thought we could only express that by combining song with speech," Dr. Brauneis said.
Jamie's legacy at the Law School will continue through memorial gifts from her friends and the Jamie Grodsky Prize for Environmental Law Scholarship, funded by a generous gift from her father. The prize recognizes an original paper by a GW Law student in the environmental field as judged by a panel. The first Grodsky Prize will be presented in conjunction with Earth Day activities this spring.
For more information, and to watch the memorial service online, please visit www.law.gwu.edu/grodsky.
Students Discuss Economics with President Obama at Town Hall Event
Photo Courtesy of CNBC
On Sept. 20, about a dozen GW Law students participated in "Investing in America: A CNBC Town Hall Event With President Obama," which aired live from the Newseum in downtown Washington. The hour-long program featured President Obama answering audience questions and presenting his views on the economy.
Many of the students were recommended to be audience members by Professor Lawrence Mitchell, who teaches business courses and is chair and executive director of GW's Center for Law, Economics & Finance (C-LEAF). Professor Mitchell said that in addition to having the opportunity to engage with both C-LEAF and GW's newly established LLM in business and finance, GW Law students interested in business and economics have the distinct advantage of studying these issues in the nation's capital.
"Our students have a front-row seat to significant events and opportunities because of our connections throughout Washington, and I was proud and pleased to see them represent the Law School so well at this event with President Obama," Professor Mitchell said.
"The experience was amazing. I was able to listen to our president speak about contested issues in person and shake his hand afterward," said 2L Sarah Goodman. "This once-in-a-lifetime experience reaffirmed not only my love for Washington, D.C., but also for the Law School for enabling such an experience."
While engaging with President Obama was an extraordinary opportunity for Goodman and her classmates, then-Dean Frederick M. Lawrence said access to senior government leaders and similar events is an advantage for every student.
"When discussing the current activities and opportunities of our students to alumni and my colleagues at other law schools, I find myself continually saying, 'Only in Washington,'" said Dean Lawrence. "It's not a stretch for me, when reflecting on an opportunity like this, to say, 'Only at GW Law.'"
GW Law Alumni Help Educate Students on Their Lunch Break at IP Benefactors Series
Renowned intellectual property law firm Rothwell, Figg, Ernst & Manbeck, P.C. sponsored a luncheon panel in October, "Practical Tips to Succeed as an Associate at a Law Firm," discussing topics ranging from patent litigation to how to manage and work with staff. The event was part of the IP Benefactor Lunch Series. Panelists (from left): Chairman and Co-Founder G. Franklin Rothwell, JD '56, Steven Lieberman, Joo Mee Kim, LLM '99, and James K. Chang, JD '09.
Eighth Annual Cohen & Cohen Mock Trial Competition
Cohen & Cohen winners Julia Perkins and Casey Gardner flank Judge Charles F. Lettow, United States Court of Federal Claims, and competition benefactor Wayne Cohen, Cohen & Cohen founder and managing partner as well as a GW professorial lecturer in law.
Casey Gardner and Julia Perkins, representing the plaintiff, won the 2010 Cohen & Cohen Mock Trial Competition in November. The Hon. Charles F. Lettow, United States Court of Federal Claims, presided. Twelve high school students acting as the jury decided the case for the defendant, who was represented by runner-ups Robert Armstrong and Katherine John. Judge Lettow is the father of Professor Renée Lettow Lerner.
"It was a pleasure to see my father on the bench at GW, handling the trial," said Professor Lerner. "The level of advocacy by the students was very high, and my father was able to make gentle suggestions where appropriate. The students quickly understood what was needed and made adjustments to questions when necessary. It was an excellent training experience."
This was the eighth annual competition and largest in history with 72 upper-level students participating. It is sponsored annually by Cohen & Cohen, a boutique personal injury firm in D.C., managed by Wayne Cohen, a professorial lecturer of law at the Law School.
For the second straight year, Capital Reporting Company provided a court reporter to transcribe the proceedings. The company also donated a raffle prize of a four-day, three-night stay at its condo at the Canyons Grand Summit in Park City, Utah. Katie John, a finalist in the competition, won the raffle.
Professor Shelton Exposes Class to Human Rights Law
Inter-American Commission on Human Rights Commissioner and Second Vice-Chair Dinah Shelton (United States) listens to testimony from Haitian citizens and NGO representatives at the hearing, "Human Rights Situation During Reconstruction in Haiti." After the hearing, petitioners had the chance to have extended conversations with delegates from the Haitian government who attended the hearings.
Last semester, Manatt/Ahn Professor of International Law Dinah L. Shelton found herself needing to amend her International Law of Human Rights class schedule to accommodate a few weeks she would be away.
The class hours were made up, but the schedule change created a very unique opportunity for her students to see human rights law in action just steps from the Law School. Professor Shelton also serves on a distinguished international tribunal created to promote and defend human rights in the Americas: the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR).
Many of Professor Shelton's students as well as other GW Law students interested in human rights were able to attend the October hearings, held at the OAS just two blocks away from the GW campus. It was the IACHR's third session of the year.
"I think it is a matchless opportunity to see Professor Shelton as one of the IACHR commissioners," says Seyed Mohammad Mehdi Hosseini, LLM '11, a student from Iran who is in Professor Shelton's human rights class.
"It shows we are learning human rights in a very practical manner and it helps us to discern how theories are being applied in various human rights systems like the IACHR," Hosseini says. "This is why GW Law School is something different."
The IACHR was created in 1959 by the members of the Organization of American States and is distinguished from other multilateral organizations' human rights entities by its political autonomy. Its seven commission members are elected in their own right, not as representatives of governments. IACHR autonomy is further enhanced by its prerogative to initiate human rights investigations and the tribunal also publishes special reports, which have been effective in challenging abuses in specific countries, and conducts hearings on cases it has found admissible. Human rights in the inter-American system are based on the 1948 American Declaration of the Rights and Duties of Man and the 1969 American Convention on Human Rights.
"This year, our sessions included testimony about extra-judicial killings in Jamaica, disappearances in Guatemala, the impact of extractive industries in several countries, and the situation of human rights in Haiti following its disastrous earthquake," Professor Shelton says. "In almost every instance, governments sent high-level delegations to the hearings."
Students David Hernández Nava, Mark de Barros, and Nora Lewis attended hearings.
"My first year serving on the Inter-American Human Rights Commission has been more adventuresome than anticipated," says Commissioner Shelton.
In addition to the hearings in Washington, as a commissioner, Professor Shelton's duties include on-site missions and this fall she visited Paraguay and Panama to look into matters involving their indigenous peoples.
"The first mission included a seven-mile hike and a four-hour donkey ride into the Chaco, to reach Paraguay's Kelynmagategma community," Professor Shelton says. "In Panama, we had to run the rapids of the Changinola River in a dugout canoe to meet with some of the Ngobe communities affected by the construction of a hydroelectric project being built by a company in Virginia. Next up? Suriname, Ecuadoran Amazonia, or perhaps the Rapa Nui of Easter Island."
Professor Shelton took photos on her fact-finding missions that she later shared with her class as she told them more about the work and what she saw and learned. The GW Native American Law Student Association plans to host Professor Shelton for a discussion and viewing of the photos this semester. Schedules for upcoming IACHR sessions will be posted on the GW Law Portal and can also be found at the IACHR website: www.cidh.org.
20 Years of GW Law Magazine
Whether examining leading legal issues of the moment, celebrating student, alumni, and faculty accomplishments, or spotlighting major Law School events and milestones, GW Law magazine has kept readers in the know for the past two decades. Happy anniversary, GW Law!
GW Law Co-Chairs the U.S.-EU Procurement Leadership Roundtable
Collin D. Swan
GW Law Professors Steven L. Schooner and Christopher R. Yukins co-chaired the inaugural U.S.-European Procurement Leadership Roundtable in Düsseldorf, Germany, in November. Practitioners, scholars, and government representatives from eight nations, including two GW Law government contracts students, Collin Swan and Christy Milliken, gathered for this event, which was also chaired by Dr. Martin Burgi from Ruhr-Universtat Bochum in Germany. The roundtable aimed to increase communication and collaboration inside Europe and across the Atlantic in the government contracting field.
Swaine Named Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs
Jessica McConnell Burt
It was a perfect passing of the baton as Professor Edward T. Swaine assumed the post of GW Law's senior associate dean for academic affairs in November, taking over the job from Gregory E. Maggs, who now serves as interim dean of the Law School.
A member of GW Law's faculty since 2006, Mr. Swaine brings a combination of experience in government, the private sector, and academia to his new role as head of the Law School's academic enterprise. His wide-ranging portfolio of responsibilities includes overseeing everything from course scheduling and exam administration to student affairs.
"It's a great opportunity for me to contribute to the Law School," says Mr. Swain, who directed GW's Competition Law Center from its founding in May 2008 until taking over the reins of academic affairs. The center quickly gained a national reputation for its innovative work promoting education and research in antitrust law — launching new courses in the field and organizing seminars, symposia, and conferences.
The popular professor of international law and contracts law also co-founded the Potomac Foreign Relations Law Roundtable with GW colleague Sean Murphy (the two were later joined by another colleague, Peter Raven-Hansen). "Every spring, we bring together academics, government officials, and public policy folks for a unique exchange of views on foreign relations law," he says. "The Law School has been extremely supportive of our efforts."
Mr. Swaine's myriad accomplishments at GW Law are rooted in real-world legal experience spanning two continents. After graduating from Yale Law School in 1989, where he was editor-in-chief of the Yale Law Journal, he clerked for the late Judge Alvin B. Rubin of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. Following his clerkship, he served as a member of the civil appellate staff at the U.S. Department of Justice for four years, briefing more than 25 appellate cases and arguing 16 in a variety of constitutional, administrative law, civil rights, banking and finance, and intellectual property matters.
In 1994, his wife was appointed legal adviser to the U.S. Mission of the European Union, so the couple packed their bags and moved to Brussels for three years. There, Mr. Swaine worked as an attorney for Cleary, Gottlieb, Steen and Hamilton, a U.S.-based multinational firm, where his work focused on European Community law and antitrust.
"We loved living in Brussels, which is really the Washington of Europe," he says. "It's a government town in many respects, but very multinational. It was a great experience for both of us."
Returning to the United States in 1997, he landed his first academic position as an associate professor of legal studies and business ethics at the Wharton School, with a secondary appointment as an associate professor at the University of Pennsylvania Law School. During a 2005-2006 leave from Penn, he served as the counselor on international law at the U.S. Department of State.
Mr. Swaine was thrilled to join GW Law School in 2006. "Professionally, in my fields of international law and international antitrust, Washington and GW in particular is the place to be," he says. "GW Law's faculty members are top notch researchers who genuinely care about what goes on in the classroom, and the students are engaged and very enthusiastic."
One of the greatest aspects of his new appointment is the opportunity it affords him "to understand and appreciate the institution and all those people who support it in a much more profound way than I did before," he says. "I now have a much better sense of just how big an enterprise the Law School is and how many people and offices are doing yeoman's work to make the place run so smoothly. It's an exciting job and I'm glad to have the chance to contribute at the margins to making a great law school even better."
(Left to right) Chief Judge Randall Rader, JD '78, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit; Associate Dean for Intellectual Property Law Studies John M. Whealan; Mathew Bryan, director, Patent Cooperation Treaty Legal Division, World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO); Professor Sean O'Connor, University of Washington; Matt Rainey, vice president and patent counsel, Intellectual Ventures; and GW Law Professor Martin Adelman.
Who Should Own Government-Funded Inventions?
The last IP Speakers Series of the semester took place in November with a lecture by University of Washington School of Law Professor Sean O'Connor titled, "Who Should Own Government-Funded Inventions? A Reconsideration of the pre-Bayh-Dole Kennedy Policy for Technology Transfer."
At a Glance
New LLM in Business
The recent financial crisis has made the study of business and law more important than ever before. In response to the field's growing significance, GW Law launched an LLM in Business and Finance Law last fall. Students may design their own curriculum or choose to concentrate in commercial law, corporate law, securities regulation, finance, or international business and trade.
"Our Business and Finance LLM program gives our students a concentrated education in these globally vital areas, with some of the best and most creative scholars in the field," said Lawrence E. Mitchell, executive director of the Center for Law, Economics & Finance, and the Theodore Rinehart Professor of Business Law.
U.S. Sen. Thomas R. Carper, from Delaware, was the luncheon keynote speaker for the symposium.
Federalism, Preemption, and State Law
The Uniform Law Commission and the Law School sponsored a full-day symposium, "Federalism, Preemption and State Law," which explored the roles of federal and state governments in areas of shared responsibility, such as regulation of the financial services and banking industries. Speakers at the October event included experts from law faculties, experienced practitioners, and representatives of state governments. More than 90 people attended the symposium, planned by ULC Executive Director John Sebert and GW Law Associate Dean Alan B. Morrison.
Citizenship and Immigration
GW Law School hosted a group of officials from the Dunn Loring, Va., office of Citizenship and Immigration Services September 10 for a seminar on the naturalization process. The event, organized by Jacqueline Laínez, the 2010-2012 Friedman Fellow in GW's Immigration Clinic, was open to the public and drew more than 50 participants. CIS officials, including Ted Kim, CIS field office director, and Sarah Taylor, CIS district director, summarized the naturalization process for the attendees, conducted a mock naturalization interview, and answered questions. Alberto M. Benítez has directed GW's Immigration Clinic since 1996.
Comparative Contracting Methods Colloquium
The Government Procurement Law program hosted an international colloquium Sept. 27. The session offered a comparative view of common contracting methods, drawing on both legal and economic elements of U.S. and European contracting. The panel featured (above from left) David Drabkin, from Northrop-Grumman; Gian Luigi Albano, head of research and development at Italian procurement agency CONSIP; Gabriella Racca, University of Turin administrative law professor; and Christopher Yukins, associate professor of government contract law at GW Law.
Torture, Privacy, and Presidential Power
Authors Charles Fried and Gregory Fried came to GW Law in September to talk about their book, Because It Is Wrong: Torture, Privacy, and Presidential Power in the Age of Terror. For their book, the father-son writing team looked at the issue of torture from both legal and philosophical viewpoints—Charles Fried has been teaching law at Harvard Law School since 1961 and was the U.S. solicitor general from 1985 to 1989, and Gregory Fried is the chair of the philosophy department at Suffolk University in Boston. The discussion was moderated by Professor Jeffrey Rosen.
GW Law's student newspaper, Nota Bene, received the 2010 Law School Newspaper Award at the American Bar Association annual meeting in San Francisco in August. During the Law Student Division's portion of the meeting, national awards were presented to outstanding ABA-approved law schools, as well as law students and student organizations from ABA-approved law schools. Harvard and the University of Virginia were also finalists for the award.
GW Law Professor Mary Cheh at her campaign launch party with council members David Catania (At-Large), Yvette Alexander (Ward 7), and Kwame Brown (Chairman).
GW Law Professor Mary Cheh will serve another four years as the Ward 3 D.C. councilmember. Cheh, who was re-elected in November, was first elected to the position in 2006. On Capitol Hill, GW Law alumni Sen. Harry Reid (JD '64), Sen. Daniel Inouye (JD '52), and Rep. Jimmy Duncan (JD '73) were also successful in their midterm re-election campaigns.
GW Environmental Law Celebrates 40th Anniversary
The Environmental Law Program celebrated its 40th anniversary in November with a panel discussion on the Gulf spill moderated by J.B. and Maurice C. Shapiro Professor of Environmental Law, Robert Glicksman. The event also included remarks from U.S. Coast Guard Chief of Environmental Law Tom Hayes a luncheon with guest speaker Arnold Reitze, J.B. and Maurice Shapiro Professor Emeritus of Environmental Law, and "Greening of GW" tours led by the Office of Sustainability.
In 40 years, GW's program has become one of the largest environmental law programs in the country. Close to 900 environmental law LLM degrees have been awarded since the program's inception, and more than 4,000 JD students have enrolled in the Law School's basic environmental law course, more than 1,000 of whom are practicing in the field today.
Arnold Reitze, J.B. and Maurice Shapiro Professor Emeritus of Environmental Law, The George Washington University Law School and Professor Kim Connolly, Director of clinical legal education, University at Buffalo Law School
Professor Pat Parenteau, senior counsel to the Environmental and Natural Resources Law Clinic, Vermont Law School
Robert Glicksman, J.B. and Maurice C. Shapiro Professor of Environmental Law, The George Washington University Law School
Students and alumni — including Ari Altman, JD '06 — wrote on a message board given to Professor Arnold Reitze as a memento of his 37 years at GW Law School.