NEWS BRIEFS First in the Pacific Northwest: Law school introduces Master of Legal Studies Program Starting this summer, Willamette University College of Law will offer a Master of Legal Studies (MLS) program, becoming the first law school in the Pacific Northwest to offer the one-year master’s degree program. The MLS is designed for professionals who do not wish to become lawyers, but whose job involves working within a legal or regulatory framework. Professionals who might benefit from the program include government employees, human resources directors, health care professionals, corporate managers, compliance officers or other professionals who work closely with lawyers. MLS Possible areas of study include business, employment, healthcare, real estate and land use, and state and local government law. MLS students work with a law school advisor to develop a set of courses to meet their specific career needs or goals. Students can pursue the degree on a full-time or part-time basis. “The MLS program is designed with flexibility in mind.” The MLS is not intended to prepare students for the J.D. program. For more information, visit: willamette.edu/go/mls. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. Three alumni among OSB honorees Three Willamette College of Law alumni were recognized during the 2013 Oregon State Bar Annual Awards Luncheon in December. Clockwise from above: Paul De Muniz JD’75, Gina Johnnie JD’87, Angel Lopez JD’78 The Honorable Paul De Muniz JD’75, distinguished jurist in residence at Willamette law school and former chief justice of the Oregon Supreme Court, was honored with the 2013 Wallace P. Carson Jr. Award for Judicial Excellence. The award honors current or retired state court or federal judges who have made significant contributions to the judicial system and are considered a model of professionalism, integrity and judicial independence. Gina Johnnie JD’87, a partner with the Salem firm of Sherman, Sherman, Johnnie & Hoyt LLP, received the President’s Membership Award for contributions 4 | Willamette Lawyer made to the profession. Johnnie has served as president of the Marion County Bar Association, member of the OSB Board of Governors and member of the local Judicial Screening Committee. The Honorable Angel Lopez JD’78, Multnomah County Circuit Court judge, was recognized with the President’s Affirmative Action Award, presented to those who have made significant contributions toward increasing minority representation in the legal profession. A former criminal defense attorney, Lopez served as the 2002 president of the OSB Board of Governors. He also co-chaired the Oregon Commission on Hispanic Affairs, served as a member and chairman of the Multnomah County Library Board of Directors, and served on the Willamette College of Law Board of Visitors.