Advocate AVE MARIA SCHOOL of LAW
ebrating l e C
MAGAZINE | Summer 2015
Advocate AVE MARIA SCHOOL of LAW MAGAZINE
| Summer 2015
Above, pictured left to right: Graduate Zachary P. Miller and family, Most Reverend Frank J. Dewane, Bishop of the Diocese of Venice in Florida and Monsignor Frank McGrath, Chaplain
Cover photo by Reagan Rule: pictured left to right; Alyse Casale and Sharitza Lopez-Rodriguez
CARDINAL NEWMAN SCHOLARSHIP
REMEMBERING CARDINAL EGAN
QUEEN OF HEAVEN BALL
15 YEAR ANNIVERSARY
15 YEAR TIMELINE
WELCOME YOUR EXCELLENCY
ONE FOR THE BOOKS
ESTATE PLANNING CONFERENCE
KEEPING IN TOUCH
Ave Maria School of Law Advocate 1025 Commons Circle • Naples, Florida 34119 Phone: (239) 687-5300 • www.avemarialaw.edu
Donna Heiser Sarah Winner
Jim Hardesty, Reagan Rule and Tony Zollo
The Blessed Virgin Mary has many titles, though from a lawyer’s perspective, none more important than “Most Gracious Advocate.” Ave Maria School of Law Advocate takes its inspiration from this title and from the recognition that lawyers are at their core, advocates. Ave Maria School of Law Office of External Affairs publishes the Advocate.
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CARDINAL NEWMAN Full Tuition Scholarship
Plans are already underway for the next Cardinal Newman Pre-law Academy in January 2016. Stay tuned for dates!
to Ave Maria School of Law
Ave Maria School of Law recently launched the Cardinal Newman Scholarship Program with great success. Twenty students are currently or will be attending AMSL on the scholarship during the Summer/Fall 2015 semester. Created by Mr. Thomas Monaghan, the scholarship is available to qualified candidates from eligible Cardinal Newman Guide Approved schools, former Fellowship of Catholic University Student (FOCUS) missionaries, students who actively participated in FOCUS at their undergraduate college or university, members of one of the parishes supporting the universities in the greater Ann Arbor area, including Christ the King, St. Mary’s Student Chapel and St. Thomas the Apostle. “We developed the Cardinal Newman Scholarship Program at Ave Maria School of Law in order to help encourage men and women who are drawn to our distinctive mission of educating lawyers within the Catholic intellectual tradition. Cardinal Newman College graduates and FOCUS missionaries who are interested in the practice of law are the perfect fit for Ave Maria School of Law and I am confident that their presence will enrich the academic and spiritual life of the Law School. These students will help to ensure that we continue to live up to our being named the “Best Catholic Law School for the Devout” in the United States, an honor we received last year by PreLaw Magazine.” Candidates may be eligible for the Cardinal Newman Full Tuition Scholarship as well as Cardinal Newman Stipends of varying amounts towards their living expenses for their first year. As part of the Cardinal Newman scholarship program, Ave Maria School of Law hosted the very successful Cardinal Newman Pre-Law Academy in January 2015. This program was open to upperclassmen and recent graduates from Cardinal Newman Schools and FOCUS programs seeking a vocation in law inspired by the Catholic intellectual tradition and the natural law. This intensive three-and-one-half day on campus program engaged participants in active learning through classroom and experiential offerings and enriching spiritual activities.
“The Cardinal Newman program is yet another indication of our generous scholarship programs,” said Director of Admissions, Claire O’Keefe. “We had a tremendously successful first year, and I am excited about the prospects for more Newman scholars in the future. Being that these students are mission oriented, they are a great addition to our student body and I have no doubt they will be highly successful attorneys who will do great things for our society.” As Ave Maria School of Law seeks to admit men and women who are drawn to our distinctive mission of educating lawyers within the Catholic intellectual tradition, we welcome applications from alumni of these institutions and members of these organizations. We are confident that these students will enrich the academic and spiritual life of the Law School. Plans are already underway for the next Cardinal Newman Pre-law Academy in January 2016. Stay tuned for dates!
“The Cardinal Newman program is yet another indication of our generous scholarship programs,” “We had a tremendously successful first year, and I am excited about the prospects for more Newman scholars in the future. Being that these students are mission oriented, they are a great addition to our student body and I have no doubt they will be highly successful attorneys who will do great things for our society.” —Claire O’Keefe, Director of Admissions
If you know of a student who may be interested in the program, please contact Claire O’Keefe, Director of Admissions, email@example.com or 239.687.5420.
Advocate | Summer 2015
A Word from our Dean Dear Friends of Ave Maria School of Law: During the 2015 – 2016 Academic Year, we will proudly celebrate our 15th Year Anniversary as a school. Our first class started in Ann Arbor, Michigan in the Fall of 2000. The concept was to create a law school of the highest academic caliber, while also holding a unique and close fidelity to the teachings of the Catholic Church and Natural Law. Thomas Monaghan, our founding Dean Bernard Dobranski, and our founding faculty’s approach was to instill in students the idea that the practice of law is a vocation—a calling from God. Their intent was to graduate men and women who would go out into the world and serve as change-agents for the good of humankind. Today, our alumni have distinguished themselves across the globe and throughout the entire spectrum of our legal profession. Ave Maria School of Law graduates are currently securing the freedom of people across the world, they are fighting for justice, serving our nation, protecting the poor, fighting for human rights, and leading their communities. Intelligent, dedicated, and morally grounded, our alumni continue to make significant contributions for humanity. They continue to make a true difference nationally, and internationally. Ave Maria School of Law continues to provide the highest quality in legal education while infusing the teachings of the Catholic Church and Natural Law in our curriculum. We take a conservative approach to the interpretation of the U.S. Constitution and seek to safeguard the ideals our Founding Fathers held near and dear to their hearts. This approach truly separates us from any other law school in America. Our faculty is second to none. Each and every one supports and respects our mission. They care about their students; they make themselves available; they participate in law school events; and they live our motto of Fides et Ratio—Faith and Reason. The Ave Law faculty has dedicated their lives to serving others, protecting the sanctity of life, and protecting human dignity. They walk their talk and approach the teaching of law as a vocation. Moreover, our faculty does not lecture from pure theory; they have extensive experience in the actual practice of law. They bring classrooms alive with real world insights, examples, and best practices. Their scholarship includes an impressive array of books and articles that have influenced culture and society. This past year, the faculty changed our curriculum to better prepare students for the bar exam. We hired a Director of Bar Preparation and we implemented courses specifically designed to help our students excel on their bar examination, as well as in their practice of law. We are placing a tremendous amount of resources, expertise, and focus in becoming a leader in bar passage. This past February, our graduates scored the highest passage rate in the State of Florida, for first-time takers. In 2009 we moved our law school from Ann Arbor, Michigan to Naples, Florida. And on April 15, 2015, Ave Maria School of Law purchased its Naples campus. We are now proud owners of 12.5 acres of paradise in the Naples Vineyards neighborhood, a beautiful golfing community of the highest caliber in Southwest Florida. Owning our campus gives us more control over our future, provides naming opportunities for fundraising, and allows us to shape our campus and law school community.
“We are Ave Law. Present, past, and the future— we give our best and seek to do God’s work.” Our staff has worked tirelessly over the years, and particularly over this past year, to provide the highest level of service to our students and to our community. No law school has a more dedicated and caring staff. We are extremely fortunate to have the members of our staff. Over this next Academic Year, we will celebrate our 15th Year Anniversary with various events throughout the year. Most of our activities will occur in January 2016, over Martin Luther King, Jr., weekend. Archbishop Chaput, the official Host of Pope Francis this September, will honor us with his presence during the weekend celebrations. Please plan to join us during the Martin Luther King, Jr., weekend to help us celebrate our 15th Year Anniversary. I am indebted to our Alumni Board, both last year and this year’s board. They have done a tremendous job supporting our school. I cannot thank our Board of Governors enough. They have gone well beyond any reasonable expectation of service over this last year, particularly concerning the purchase of our campus. On March 23, 2015, we received official recognition as a Catholic Institute of Higher Learning. While we have been named in the past as the Best Law School in the country for the Devout, this recognition provides official recognition, and even more importantly, it places His Excellency Frank J. Dewane, Bishop of the Diocese of Venice in Florida, on our Board. The addition of His Excellency to our Board provides us with an invaluable advisor who is not only intellectually gifted, but also an exceptional leader. Thank you to our benefactors for supporting us over the years. Thank you Tom Monaghan for the countless times you have given your time and personal funds to our school. Thank you to the anonymous donor who gave us One Million Dollars this year, the largest gift we have ever received that was not from Mr. Monaghan. And thank you to all of you who send what you can. Each dollar makes a tremendous difference. It helps our students, our campus, and our mission. Lastly, I want to thank our students. As I walk the campus each day, I feel the warmth, passion, and true care that our students possess. Our students yearn to make a difference, to stand for all that is good, to fulfill what our Lord has intended them to become. We are Ave Law. Present, past, and the future—we give our best and seek to do God’s work.
God Bless, Kevin Cieply President and Dean
Advocate | Summer 2015
Sidebars STUDENTS PARTICIPATE IN THE SIXTH ANNUAL ST. THOMAS MORE AND ST. THOMAS AQUINAS ORATORICAL COMPETITION
The sixth annual St. Thomas More and St. Thomas Aquinas Oratorical Competition was held this spring and featured eight law students who gave their oral presentation before an audience of fellow students, faculty, alumni and family members in the Donum Dei Moot Courtroom. The competitors answered the question “How do you intend to incorporate the example and values of St. Thomas More and St. Thomas Aquinas into your legal career?” Nicholaus Michels ‘16, a 2L student originally from Sioux Falls, South Dakota, was named the Law School’s Oratorical Champion at the competition. Mr. Michels received a $250 cash prize, and a $100 AMSL Bookstore gift certificate. His name was also added to the trophy, which is on permanent display in the Law Library Reading Room next to the statue of St. Thomas More. When asked about how he feels winning the competition, Nicholaus replied “to God alone belongs the glory. As St. Ignatius of Loyola was want to say “Ad Meioram Dei Gloriam,” that is “All for the greater glory of God.”
Competitors pictured above include: Gary DePury ‘15, Elizabeth Einhorn ‘15, Rosekate Ibe ‘16, Eric Moore ‘15, Jorge Rodriguez-Sierra ‘16, Paul Udouj ‘17 and Daniel Whitehead ‘17. Judges: Dean Emeritus Milhizer, Professor Kirkland Miller and Professor Brian Scarnecchia. Professor Mark Bonner served as Master of Ceremonies.
NAOMI HATTON ’17 NAMED WINNER OF THE ST. THOMAS MORE MOOT COURT COMPETITION Naomi Hatton ‘17 was the winner of the 15th Annual St. Thomas More Moot Court Competition. The final round was held in April in the Donum Dei Moot Courtroom. The four finalists were Geoffrey Cuccuini ‘17, Naomi Hatton ‘17, Michelle Hurvitz ‘17 and Nicole Staller ‘17. The 2014-2015 Best Brief for the previous year was also announced; a winning tie between Elizabeth Humann ‘16 and Kenneth Mundy ‘16. Serving as judges for the final round of the competition were the Honorable Sheri Polster Chappell, United States District Judge in the Fort Myers Division of the Middle District of Florida; the Honorable Hugh D. Hayes, Collier County Circuit Judge of the 20th Judicial Circuit of Florida; and the Honorable John E. Steele, United States District Judge in the Fort Myers Division of the Middle District of Florida.
AMSL NATIONAL BLACK LAW STUDENT ASSOCIATION Ave Maria School of Law’s National Black Law Student Association’s President, Brandon Cooper ‘16 together with students Ira Combs ‘16 and Siobhan Bonilla ‘17 participated in a Mock Trial demonstration with the Honorable Judge Archie Hayward presiding as well as attorneys from the National Bar Association. AMSL National Black Law Student Association also hosted Mr. Daryl Parks the Attorney for Trayvon Martin and Michael Brown in an education and achievement panel discussion. Brandon Cooper ‘16 and Attorney Darryl Parks
CONGRATULATIONS TO THE NEW STUDENT BAR ASSOCIATION MEMBERS
MARCH FOR LIFE AND LAW OF LIFE SUMMIT More than thirty Ave Maria School of Law students, alumni and faculty traveled to Washington, D.C. in January to participate in the March for Life, the largest pro-life event in the world. In conjunction with the March for Life, Ave Maria School of Law sponsored two Law of Life Summits, annual anti-abortion action conferences held in both Washington, D.C. and in San Francisco, and founded by our alumnus, Royce Hood ‘12. “The Law of Life Summit, co-sponsored by Ave Maria School of Law has become a forum that fosters and encourages the future leadership of the respect life movement,” said Mr. Hood. “Our goal is to provide a forum for communication and collaboration that advances the defense of human life. The Summits highlighted the need for pro-life legislation, inspirational media, and education.” Pro-life leaders from around the country joined the AMSL community on Wednesday, January 21 to discuss and create measurable and achievable objectives for defending the sanctity of human life. Kevin Cieply, President and Dean of Ave Maria School of Law spoke at the Law of Life Summit in Washington, D.C. Dean Kevin Cieply, Monsignor Frank McGrath, our Chaplain, and Professor Brian Scarnecchia joined with our students at the March for Life the following day.
CONGRATULATIONS TO THE NEWEST MEMBERS OF THE FLORIDA BAR
Pictured above: Dean Kevin Cieply, Monsignor Frank McGrath, Chaplain, Frank Roberts ‘15, William Stallings ‘15, The Honorable Janice T. Martin, Collier County Judge, Florida’s 20th Judicial Circuit, Leesha Newkirk Crouch ‘14 and Debbie Dye ‘14.
Pictured above left to right: Naomi Hatton ‘17 and Andrew Riordan ‘16 are the 2015/2016 Vice President and President. Middle: Jovanni Fiallo ‘16 and Mary Kanowsky ‘16, the former President and VP. Right: Candidates Brandon Cooper ‘16 and Francisco Xavier ‘17.
SUPPORTING OUR FLORIDA BAR TAKERS AMSL Alumni and Staff traveled to Tampa to show their support for those who took the Florida Bar Exam on February 24 and 25 at the Tampa Convention Center. The AMSL Alumni Association also spoke to the 3L students about the practicalities of taking the Florida Bar Exam. “We want to remove the unknown for the students as they study,” said AMSL Alumni Association Vice President Jaime Hewitt ’14. “The goal (of the bar support and workshop) is to reduce stress and show support in order to create space for studying. We are committed to helping our AMSL community not only when they are taking the bar exam but also after.”
(Above) Bar workshop photo left to right: Nicole Bercume Bass ‘14, Chanele Tate ‘14, Richard Lavariere ‘14 (not pictured), William Stallings ’15 and Jaime Hewitt ‘14. Pictured above, left to right: Will Stallings ’15, Jaime Hewitt ’14 and Frank Roberts ’15.
Advocate | Summer 2015
15 years of Legal Excellence
This academic year we will witness a milestone in the history of Ave Maria School of Law (AMSL). Founded in Ann Arbor, Michigan in 2000 by philanthropist Thomas Monaghan, the vision was to create a law school unlike any other, one rooted in the Catholic intellectual tradition. “In 1998 I sold Domino’s Pizza in order to devote my full-time attention and resources to a number of important causes, including founding Ave Maria School of Law,” said Thomas S. Monaghan, Chairman of the Board and Founder of Ave Maria School of Law. “I could not have imagined the challenges we would face during the process, or the successes we would experience. Over the last fifteen years, it has been encouraging to see hundreds of lawyers trained in the Catholic intellectual tradition who are now promoting the Culture of Life and already impacting our society.” “My dream was to create a truly Catholic law school that would provide the best legal education possible. That vision continues to be accomplished in the men and women who graduate each year from Ave Maria School of Law,” said Thomas Monaghan. “I’ve said many times that, other than the priesthood, I can think of no more noble profession than the practice of law. By helping to train the next generation of lawyers, lawmakers, judges and business men and women to positions of leadership, I believe we can change the course of our country. I am proud of Ave Maria School of Law, of her talented and dedicated faculty and staff, of her students and graduates, and of the hundreds of benefactors who believed with me that investing in a Catholic law school was vital to our country’s future.” Early on, Professors Mollie Murphy and Richard Myers joined a group of visionaries who saw the need for a different kind of law school and together with Tom Monaghan and Dean Emeritus Bernard Dobranski began the journey that would become Ave Maria School of Law.
“When we started the Law School, our objectives were several and ambitious,” noted Professor Mollie Murphy. “We believed law students would benefit from a legal education enhanced by exposure to the Catholic intellectual tradition—the foundation of the Western legal tradition. We wanted to instill in our students the sense of law as vocation, rather than merely an occupation. We wanted to share our conviction that one could be both an outstanding lawyer and an ethical and moral person.” “Fifteen years ago, a group of visionaries came together under the leadership of Tom Monaghan and Bernard Dobranski, the law school’s Founding Dean, to fully embrace a revolutionary idea,” remarked Dean Emeritus Eugene R. Milhizer, the law school’s second Dean. “They recognized the need for a unique law school that would embrace the Catholic Intellectual tradition completely, teach Natural Law, and prepare graduates not just to practice law in the conventional sense, but to be champions for good and confront cultural crises head-on across the nation and around the world. Our greatest achievements of the past fifteen years are the success stories of our students and graduates who today are deeply engaged in the effort to restore traditional values in communities of every size all across America.” In its short history, Ave Maria has begun the process of placing the next generation of lawyers, lawmakers and judges in positions of leadership across the United States, where they will fight to defend our Constitution, promote a Culture of Life, and advance the cause of justice and freedom for all. In 2009, the Law School moved its campus to Naples, Florida, an unprecedented feat never attempted by any other law school in the country. The relocation from Michigan to Florida came in on time and under budget, thanks to the leadership of Dean Emeritus Milhizer and to Kaye Castro, Associate Dean for Student and Academic Affairs.
“By helping to train the next generation of lawyers, lawmakers, judges and business men and women to positions of leadership, I believe we can change the course of our country. I am proud of Ave Maria School of Law, of her talented and dedicated faculty and staff, of her students and graduates, and of the hundreds of benefactors who believed with me that investing in a Catholic law school was vital to our country’s future.” –Tom Monaghan, Chairman of the Board and Founder
in the Catholic Tradition “Ave Maria School of Law is unique. It stands apart because of its Mission, its founding principles, its people, and its journey. During AMSL’s brief history, it has remained dedicated to promoting the harmony of faith and reason, and to the practice of law as a noble vocation that is Christ centered, serves people and promotes the common good. I am proud, honored and humbled to have played a role in AMSL’s first fifteen years, and I look forward to the future with serene anticipation.” –Dean Emeritus Eugene Milhizer “It has been an honor to have been a member of the staff at Ave Maria School of Law since its formation. Southwest Florida was selected for its potential for economic growth, which continues to unfold,” said Dean Castro. “Recently, IHS Global Insight, a Colorado-based research firm, predicted that this region will see the most economic growth in 2016 out of all metros in the country. We have seen the number of opportunities for our students to volunteer in the community, gain experience through externships and work/study positions with local firms and agencies, and join the legal profession after graduation. The Law School continues to draw students from throughout the nation, and while they often return to their home states after graduation, many decide to remain in Florida, to become part of this growing economy.” Andrew Bodoh, the President of the Law School’s Alumni Association noted that the move to Florida was a transformational one. “I was in the first graduating class in Florida, so I had the opportunity to help the School transition from Michigan to Florida. It was exciting to try to reestablish the traditions of the School in a new environment. We got Lex Vitae off the ground, working with the local pro-life community. We found new venues for yearly events. My class, and the classes we were with, began to make Naples home for our School,” he said. “I served as a mentor for AMSL students on its board of visitors as soon as the law school opened its doors in 2000 and was honored to join the ranks of distinguished faculty as a visiting associate professor of law in 2008 and help with AMSL’s move to Naples, FL. Now I am privileged to teach first year law school students moral foundations of law. Nothing matters more to me than that. I consider AMSL and its mission my life’s work,” noted Professor Brain Scarnecchia. AMSL’s Director of Student Financial Services remarked that he joined the law school soon after the move to
Florida. “I’ve worked at much larger colleges and universities before joining the staff at Ave Maria School of Law when the school first relocated to Florida. The size and the nature of the law school has allowed me to get to know our students and understand their needs and I look forward to the impact these students and graduates will make to our legal system and our country,” said Kevin McGowan, Director of Student Financial Services. “It is an honor for me to lead the celebration of our 15th Year Anniversary as a school,” said President and Dean Kevin Cieply. “Building on a solid past, our future is bright, especially with the purchase of our 12.5 acre Naples campus this year. Owning our campus gives us more control over our future, provides naming opportunities for fundraising, and allows us to continue to flourish as Southwest Florida’s only law school.” “We hope you will celebrate our 15th Year Anniversary with us by attending some of the events being planned throughout the academic year, especially during January 2016, over Martin Luther King, Jr. weekend,” said Dean Cieply. “We are most honored to welcome Archbishop Chaput, the official Host of Pope Francis this September, as our special guest at the 15th Anniversary Gala to be held on Friday, January 15th. You are welcome to join us for the entire weekend to help us celebrate this important milestone in our history.” “Ave Maria School of Law is unique. It stands apart because of its Mission, its founding principles, its people, and its journey. During AMSL’s brief history, it has remained dedicated to promoting the harmony of faith and reason, and to the practice of law as a noble vocation that is Christ centered, serves people and promotes the common good,” noted Dean Emeritus Milhizer. “I am proud, honored and humbled to have played a role in AMSL’s first fifteen years, and I look forward to the future with serene anticipation.”
Advocate | Summer 2015
AN AMAZING FIFTEEN YEARS
In 1999, Founder and Chairman, Thomas S. Monaghan announced his intention to build a distinctive and explicitly Catholic law school in Ann Arbor, Michigan. He made a $50 million commitment to ensure the success of the school. Mr. Monaghan, along with Founding Dean Bernard Dobranski, worked to assemble a group of 11 distinguished Catholic leaders to make the vision of this Catholic law school a reality. These individuals comprised the Founding Board of Ave Maria School of Law. In addition, the Founding Faculty worked tirelessly to establish AMSL’s reputation for a quality legal education. It was announced that The Honorable Robert Bork would serve as faculty of the law school and The Honorable Clarence Thomas, Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States the first Ave Maria Lecturer.
15 Years 2004
AMSL opens its first clinical program: Asylum and Immigrant Rights Law Clinic.
AMSL receives full accreditation– in shortest possible time - from the America Bar Association.
Professors Jane Adolphe, Eugene Milhizer and Jim Sonne are the first to receive tenure while at AMSL.
Commencement speaker and Honorary degree recipient: The Honorable Clarence Thomas, Associate Justice, Supreme Court of the United States
Commencement speaker and Honorary degree recipient: The Honorable R. James Nicholson, Secretary of Veterans Affairs
Commencement speaker: The Honorable Edith B. Clement, United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
Ave Maria Lecturer: The Honorable Antonin Scalia, Associate Justice, The Supreme Court of the United States
Honorary degree recipients: The Honorable Edith Brown Clement, The Honorable James Lane Buckley, The Honorable William Patrick Clark and The Honorable James Leo Ryan
Ave Maria Lecturer: The Honorable Edwin Messe, III, Ronald Reagan Distinguished Fellow in Public Policy the Heritage Foundation
Eugene R. Milhizer becomes the second President and Dean of AMSL in January 2010.
AMSL has its highest enrollment of nearly 500 students.
Obtained Florida license to operate as an independent school.
Professor Jane Adolphe invited by the Holy See to work with the Vatican Secretariat of State.
The Ave Maria International Law Journal was founded.
Held first Commencement Ceremonies in Florida with The Honorable John Ellis “Jeb” Bush, Former Governor of the States of Florida, as the Commencement speaker. Honorary degree recipients: John Ellis Bush, Mother Mary Angelica, Bernard Dobranski and William F. Harrington
“Conversations With” Speaker events featuring Bret Baier and Senator Rick Santorum. Annual Fall Gala featuring Karl L. Rove. Commencement speaker: The Honorable Marco Rubio, U.S. Senate Honorary degree recipients: Senator Marco Rubio and His Eminence Edward Cardinal Egan Ave Maria Lecturers: His Eminence Raymond Cardinal Burke, Prefect of the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura and His Eminence Edward Cardinal Egan, Archbishop Emeritus of New York
2014 Board of Governors and Faculty approve a comprehensive strategic plan. Princeton Review names AMSL the Most Conservative School in the country. Pre Law Magazine names AMSL the Most Devout Law School in the nation. AMSL hosts inaugural Estate Planning Conference. Launch of inaugural 1L Summer Start program. Kevin Cieply becomes the third President and Dean.
Federal Court has granted AMSL a Preliminary Injunction from directly providing contraceptive and abortifacient coverage for its employees. Faith & Reason Signature Event Series Launches with Dr. Charles Krauthammer and Senator Ted Cruz. AMSL welcomes Speakers Dr. Henry Lee, John Bolton, Al Kresta, Ambassador Francis Rooney and Dr. Mario Enzler.
Queen of Heaven Ball featuring Ambassador Michael Novak. Commencement speaker: His Eminence Francis Cardinal Arinze, Prefect Emeritus and Nigerian Cardinal Honorary degree recipients: His Eminence Francis Cardinal Arinze and Thomas B. Garlick
2000 The Law School was licensed by the State of Michigan and classes began in the fall of 2000. The attention of many of the elite in the legal world, including Edwin Meese, Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas, Kenneth Starr, and a host of others was focused on AMSL.
2001 Students and faculty attend the March for Life in Washington D.C., a tradition that continues each year.
AMSL was granted provisional accreditation by the American Bar Association. Ave Maria Lecturer: The Honorable Kenneth Starr
Original teaching faculty includes Judge Robert Bork, Richard Myers, Stephen Safranek, Joseph Falvey, Mollie Murphy, and Howard Bromberg.
On February 20, 2007, the AMSL Board of Governors announce that the Law School would relocate to southwest Florida. Commencement speaker and Honorary degree recipient: The Honorable Janice Rogers Brown, United States of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit
His Eminence Edward Cardinal Egan donates a rare collection of 45 Canon Law books to the Law Library. Commencement speaker: Samuel Dale Brownback, U. S. Senate Honorary degree recipients: The Honorable Samuel Dale Brownback, The Honorable Robert Heron Bork and Charles Edward Rice Ave Maria Lecturer: Ambassador Michael Novak, George Frederick Jewett Scholar in Religion, Philosophy and Public Policy
Bernard Dobranski becomes the first President and Dean.
AMSL’s inaugural commencement and the highest bar passage rate in Michigan and above 90 percent nationwide.
2008 Eugene R. Milhizer is named Acting Dean. Commencement speaker and honorary degree recipient: The Honorable Christopher H. Smith, U. S. House of Representatives
Ave Maria Lecturer: Reverend R. John Neuhaus, President of the Institute on Religion and Public Life, Editor in Chief – First Things
2009 Over the summer of 2009, AMSL moves from Ann Arbor to its new home in Naples Florida. Under the leadership of acting President and Dean Eugene R. Milhizer, AMSL obtains ABA acquiescence for the relocation. ABA continues AMSL’s full accreditation following a comprehensive review and sabbatical site visit. AMSL matriculates its largest class, in excess of 200 students. AMSL is ranked Best Teaching faculty by Princeton Review. Carl Anderson, Supreme Knight, Knights of Columbus is guest speaker for Opening Gala for the Law School. Inaugural St. Thomas Aquinas St. Thomas More Oratorical Contest. Commencement speaker and Honorary degree recipient: His Eminence Adam Cardinal Maida
The Reed Larson Professor of Labor Law was created with Professor John Raudabaugh acting as Chair
AMSL filed suit in Federal Court regarding the HHS Mandate, represented by Alliance Defending Freedom’s, Matt Bowman ’03.
Moot Court Team reaches the national finals.
AMSL Moot Court Competition named in honor of the late Judge Robert H. Bork.
Florida Governor Rick Scott visits. Alum Royce Hood ’12 launches The Law of Life Summit in Washington D.C. The Advanced Critical Thinking (ACT) Department was formed. Commencement speaker and Honorary degree recipient: Robert P. George, McCormick Professor of Jurisprudence, Princeton University
Commencement speaker: Carl A. Anderson, Supreme Knight, Knights of Columbus Honorary degree recipients: Carl A. Anderson, Patrick F. Adams and Monsignor Laurence E. Higgins Ave Maria Lecturer: The Honorable Martin L.C. Feldman, U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana
2015 AMSL receives official recognition as a Catholic Institute of Higher Learning by His Excellency, Most Reverend Frank J. Dewane, Bishop of the Diocese of Venice in Florida. AMSL purchases its Naples campus in the Vineyards, Naples, Florida. AMSL receives #1 Bar passage rate in the state of Florida for February first time bar exam takers. AMSL receives $1 million dollar gift from an anonymous donor to launch the Capital Campaign. Commencement speaker: General Peter Pace, United States Marine Corps (Retired), 16th Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Honorary Degree recipients: General Peter Pace, Richard L. Klaas and Dean Emeritus Eugene R. Milhizer
Advocate | Summer 2015
ONE FOR THE BOOKS
Adriana Emir, Career Services Counselor & Externship Coordinator, Jennifer Lucas-Ross, Director of Career Services and Celestine Oglesby, Asst. Director of Career Services
Ulysses Jaen, Director of the AMSL Law Library and Leesha Newkirk-Crouch â€˜14
Collier County Commissioner Georgia Hiller, Naples Mayor John Sorey, AMSL Board of Governors members Richard Klaas, Thomas Garlick and Micheal Saadeh
Dean Cieply celebrates the purchase of our campus.
AN HISTORIC DAY FOR AVE MARIA SCHOOL OF LAW! Amidst a standing room only crowd on April 16, Dean Kevin Cieply made a “Grand Slam” announcement of four historic events that will forever change the history of Ave Maria School of Law. The “Taking Root in the Vineyards” celebration was attended by our Board of Governors, faculty, staff, alumni and students as well as by community supporters, including Naples Mayor John Sorey and Collier County Commissioner Georgia Hiller, who toasted to the purchase of the campus and the recent accomplishments of the law school.
OFFICIAL RECOGNITION AS A CATHOLIC INSTITUTE OF HIGHER LEARNING “This is a special moment in our history and a time for Ave Maria School of Law to rejoice,” announced Dean Cieply. “Most Reverend Frank J. Dewane, Bishop of the Diocese of Venice in Florida, has signed a Decree of Recognition officially recognizing Ave Maria School of Law as a Catholic Institute of Higher Learning. The Decree is a testament to our true commitment and fidelity to the Catholic Church and its teachings.”
TAKING ROOT IN THE VINEYARDS - $1 MILLION GIFT RECEIVED “I am also pleased to share with you that today, Ave Maria School of Law has purchased our campus and launched a $3.2 Million Capital Campaign, thanks to the generosity of an anonymous donor who has given us a $1 million gift. The gift is the largest in our history, other than the gifts of our founder.” Commenting on the campus purchase, Chairman of the Board and Founder Tom Monaghan noted that “This opportunity to purchase the Vineyards campus in north Naples is a significant milestone for Ave Maria School of Law. The rental of the campus from the university to the law school over the last six years has been a blessing to both institutions - as is this sale It is a classic win-win situation with the law school being able to own its own campus and the university being able to sell an asset that it never intended to hold on to long term. Our mission to create a national Catholic law school with a fidelity to faith and reason has taken root in Naples and I am pleased to say is flourishing. We are very grateful to our million dollar benefactor for his generosity in helping us raise $1.150 million towards our goal of $3.2 million for our Capital Campaign.” The Capital Campaign was in a quiet stage for 18 months. With the purchase of the campus, a significant savings in rental expense will be realized, freeing up funds for scholarships, new academic initiatives, campus infrastructure improvements and faculty development. The campus purchase also provides for an outstanding array of naming opportunities on campus. A list of Campus Naming opportunities can be found in this issue of the Advocate. For more information, please contact Donna Heiser, Chief Advancement and Communications Officer at 239-687-5405.
WE’RE #1! AMSL IS RANKED FIRST IN THE FEBRUARY FLORIDA BAR PASSAGE
Continuing with the great news, Dean Cieply shared the announcment that Ave Maria School of Law’s bar passage was ranked #1 in the state of Florida with 83 percent of graduates passing the February bar exam on the first try. This far exceeds the statewide average passing rate of 64.3 percent. “I am proud of the diligence and great work of our graduates. They have represented our school, their families and themselves with absolute distinction. They deserve all the credit for their hard work and dedication,” said President and Dean Kevin Cieply. “Bar passage remains one of our top priorities and our faculty and staff are committed to helping our graduates to achieve success on the bar exam. We want to ensure that they are fully prepared for their legal career.” “We launched an unprecedented effort to prepare our graduates to succeed on the bar exam,” continued Dean Cieply. “These efforts include new mandatory and elective course offerings, the creation and enhancement of our Advanced Critical Thinking (ACT) department, an array of other programming and expert guest lecturers, along with a renewed emphasis on academic rigor. Also, the Law School hired a new Director of Bar Preparation, Christopher Busscaglia, who has a wealth of relevant experience and qualifications, including being a bar lecturer for Kaplan since 2006. We believe that this comprehensive approach will ensure that our graduates are given all they need to succeed on bar examinations.” “This truly was a historic day for Ave Maria School of Law,” said President and Dean of Ave Maria School of Law, Kevin Cieply. “Having the #1 ranking in Florida Bar passage, launching our Capital Campaign with a $1 Million dollar gift, receiving the Decree of Recognition as a Catholic Institute of Higher Learning from Bishop Frank Dewane and purchasing our campus, really taking root in the Naples community is outstanding. We had a grand slam week.”
Advocate | Summer 2015
AVE MARIA SCHOOL OF LAW
CAMPUS NAMING OPPORTUNITIES Naming opportunities offer you a meaningful way to support Ave Maria School of Law while honoring and commemorating someone or something important in your life. The following is a partial list of naming opportunities for your consideration. If you are interested in a named gift opportunity, kindly contact Donna Heiser, Chief Advancement and Communications Officer at 239-687-5405 or firstname.lastname@example.org .
A HOME FOR FAITH AND REASON Investing in the Future of Ave Maria School of Law
Interested in a named gift opportunity? Please contact Donna Heiser at 239-687-5405 or email@example.com .
Welcome & Reception Areas
Courtyard and Patio
Faculty and Staff Lounges
Reception area History Wall
Vineyards Blvd., Pine Ridge and Vanderbilt Signage
Library Group Study Conference Rooms
Offices (small) $5,000 36 Commons Fountain
Kitchen and Snack Bar
Tables- Moot Court Room
Computer Workstations $1,500 20 Awards Cases
Bench Tree 12 avemarialaw.edu
Growing Attendance Kimberly Leach Johnson and Christopher Bray
PLANTING THE SEED: Two years ago Jonathan Gopman, an Adjunct Professor at Ave Maria School of Law, saw a need in the Southwest Florida market for continuing education in estate planning for attorneys and financial planners. A partner in the Akerman Law firm and a nationally recognized expert in sophisticated wealth accumulation and preservation planning strategies for entrepreneurs, Jonathan’s idea was hatched over a breakfast meeting with Academic Dean Ted Afield and Chief Advancement and Communications Officer Donna Heiser. Joining the group soon after was fellow Adjunct Professor Kevin Carmichael, a business and tax law expert and partner in the law firm of Salvatori, Wood, Buckel, Carmichael & Lottes, and the Ave Maria School of Law Estate Planning Conference was planted and created. Celebrating the success of what has become the premier annual estate planning event in Southwest Florida, the Conference in its second year doubled attendance and attracted nationally recognized speakers and quality sponsors. “A testament to the success of the first conference was that we were able to re-secure big name speakers with a mix of new speakers for the next year,” said Mr. Gopman. “That demonstrates that the Law School and the Conference are a quality resource that’s in demand.” Professor Gopman was right. The Estate Planning Conference received an amazing response and afforded the law school a great opportunity to invite the professional estate planning community to experience our campus.
DEEPENING THE ROOTS: The second annual Ave Maria School of Law Estate Planning Conference was led by Committee Chair Christopher Bray, an Adjunct Professor at the law school and Managing Director of the Florida offices of the multi-state private wealth management firm of Ariel Capital Advisors, LLC. “The first year took a lot of hard work to get it going,” said Mr. Bray
Estate Planning Conference 2014 Committee Members, Left to Right, Back Row: Chair, Christopher Bray, Richard Smarg, Aaron Farmer, Marve Ann Alaimo, Gregory Holtz, Jennifer Lucas-Ross, Jean Takacs, Alan Gassman Front Row Left to Right: Brian Mc Avoy, David Masterson and Donna Heiser
“We made sure the roots were deepened to go forward.” The conference location on the law school campus proved to be the perfect networking setting for legal and financial professionals to interact with AMSL faculty, staff and nationally recognized speakers to discuss the latest estate planning techniques and topics. “I was impressed with the attendance and the organization of the event. There were several interesting speakers who touched on some relevant developments in estate planning techniques. The Conference is a good resource for Southwest Florida Estate Planning professionals and I was pleased to be a part of it,” said speaker Kimberly Leach Johnson, Esq., Firm Chair, Quarles & Brady LLP. The success of the conference would not have been possible without the hard work of our AMSL Conference Coordinators Karen Grebing (inaugural year) and Jean Takacs (second year to present), the Committee and the support of our sponsors, and for this we are truly grateful. A complete list follows.
NOW IT’S TIME TO GROW: AMSL Professor Gregory T. Holtz will serve as the as the 2016 Estate Planning Conference Committee Chair and planning is already underway. “We want the estate planning community to view our Conference as a valued resource, one that helps them grow their practice and serve their clients,” said Professor Holtz. “For that reason, it’s an honor to be involved in planning this year’s Conference. All of us on the Committee look forward to hosting a truly outstanding event.” The third annual estate planning conference will be held on Friday, April 29, 2016.
Johnathan Gopman walking up to speak at the Estate Planning Conference
2015 SPONSORS: Northern Trust Advisors Trust Planning and Investment Company, LLC Farmer & Associates, PLCC PCE Valuations, LLC Ariel Capital Advisors, LLC PNC Wealth Management Akerman LLP Wynn’s Catering Rehmann Gassman Law Associates, P.A. Hill, Barth & King Cummings & Lockwood, LLC 2015 COMMITTEE CHAIR: Christopher Bray, Managing Director, Ariel Capital Advisors, LLC and Adjunct Professor 2015 COMMITTEE MEMBERS: Ted Afield, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Associate Professor Marve Ann Alaimo, Principal, Cummings & Lockwood, LLC Christopher Bray, Managing Director, Ariel Capital Advisors, LLC and Adjunct Professor Kevin Carmichael, Partner, Salvatori, Wood, Buckel, Carmichael and Lottes and Adjunct Professor Aaron Farmer, Partner, Farmer and Associates, PLCC Alan Gassman, Founder, Gassman Law Associates, P.A. Jonathan Gopman, Chair, Akerman LLP Trusts and Estates, Family Services Practice Group and Adjunct Professor Donna Heiser, Chief Advancement and Communications Officer Gregory Holtz, 2016 Committee Chair, Professor Ulysses Jaen, Library Director, Ave Maria School of Law David Masterson, Vice President, Northern Trust Brian McAvoy, Partner, Roetzel and Andres Jennifer Lucas-Ross, Director of Career Services Richard Smarg, Founder, Retirement and Insurance Resources and Advisors Trust Planning and Investment Company William Snyder, Founder, Snyder and Snyder, P.A. Jean Takacs, Advancement Services and Events Coordinator
Advocate | Summer 2015
Planned Giving How you can create a Legacy with a Planned Gift to Ave Maria School of Law. Creating a legacy is a desire most of us have to insure that the good work of Ave Maria School of Law will continue into the future, and that in a meaningful way we have been instrumental in that growth. Yet often times we aren’t sure how to go about planning to leave a gift that will grow, extending our generosity and creating a lasting legacy. Many people are surprised to learn that a planned gift to Ave Maria School of Law can also protect your assets, provide for your loved ones and guarantee an income for life. With the help of your financial advisor, you can easily add a charitable bequest in your estate plan, make Ave Maria School of Law a beneficiary of your retirement plan or life insurance policy or create a Charitable Gift Annuity that will pay you a fixed percentage return for the rest of your life or a loved one’s life. Upon your passing the remaining funds from your initial gift will go to Ave Maria School of Law. To learn more about making a gift through your estate, and how you can create a legacy with planned giving opportunities, please contact me at 239.687-5405 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. When you make a planned gift to Ave Maria School of Law, you will have the assurance of knowing that your funds will be invested wisely through the Ave Maria Foundation and that it will impact generations of students. With your help, we can continue Tom Monaghan’s dream of creating a law school dedicated to Our Lady, with a true fidelity to the teachings of the Catholic Church, a dedication to promoting the harmony of Fatih and Reason and a commitment to enhancing the Culture of Life. Donna Heiser, Chief Advancement & Communications Officer Ave Maria School of Law
The Heritage Society SECURING OUR FUTURE
The Heritage Society was established to recognize alumni and friends who have included Ave Maria School of Law in their estate plans. These gifts take many forms including simple bequests by will, gift annuities, insurance policies, and charitable trusts. Many of these plans offer substantial financial and tax-saving benefits, often complementing an individual’s overall estate plan. The Heritage Society is also a sign of the confidence that many people today have in the vision and values of Ave Maria School of Law. It is this kind of confidence that will ensure the future of Ave Maria School of Law. We would be honored and grateful to include you as a member of the Ave Maria School of Law Heritage Society. Please contact Donna Heiser in the Office of Advancement at (239) 687-5405 if you would like to discuss ways to include Ave Maria in your estate plans. If preferred, Heritage Society members may remain anonymous. With your membership in the Heritage Society, you help ensure a steady stream of lawyers who will fight for faith and reason for generations to come.
Create a lasting Legacy with Ave Maria School of Law Planned or deferred gifts are designed to help you enhance your estate planning, tax planning, investment objectives and retirement needs while ensuring the future needs of Ave Maria School of Law. When you make a Planned gift to Ave Maria School of Law, you help us to provide much-needed scholarships and financial aid to deserving students, enable us to provide support for faculty enrichment, legal clinics and campus enhancements. Always consult with your attorney or financial advisor when making a charitable donation.
A bequest in your will is the most commonly preferred way to direct a gift from your estate. You can leave Ave Maria School of Law a specific amount, a certain percentage of your full estate, or your entire estate. A residuary bequest is one in which you leave Ave Maria School of Law the residue of your estate after all other specific bequests to your loved ones or other organizations are made. Another type of bequest is called a contingent bequest, where you designate that the gift is dependent on certain events, such as your heirs predeceasing you. Your assets remain in your control during your lifetime and you can modify your gift at any time.
Unlike most other assets in your estate, which are subject to only an estate tax, retirement assets, such as an IRA, defined contribution pension plan, 401(k), or profit sharing plan that are not left to your spouse or a charity, are subject to both an estate tax and income tax. In some cases this double taxation can exceed 80%. Rather than the possibility of more than 80% of your retirement funds going to the government, you may wish to consider leaving your retirement funds to Ave Maria School of Law. With this option you will need to contact your Plan Administrator and request a “Change of Beneficiary Form.”
CHARITABLE GIFT ANNUITY
If your life insurance policy is no longer needed for its original purpose, you may want to consider naming Ave Maria School of Law as one of the beneficiaries or the sole beneficiary of your policy. You may also transfer ownership of a policy to Ave Maria School of Law. If you transfer ownership and/or sole beneficiary status, the policy’s face value is removed from your taxable estate. Also, any future premiums that are paid on the policy by you may be treated as charitable gifts, and if the policy has a cash value, you may be able to take an immediate tax deduction. Contact your insurance company and obtain a beneficiary designation form.
A charitable gift annuity is a simple contract between you and Ave Maria School of Law. In exchange for an irrevocable gift of cash or securities, Ave Maria School of Law agrees to pay you and/or a loved one a fixed sum of money each year for life, usually not exceeding a percentage of the gift’s value. Gift annuities are subject to minimum contributions. You may be able to save on capital gains tax by gifting appreciated securities.
It is always advisable to consult your attorney or tax advisor when making a charitable donation. For information on how you can leave a legacy by including Ave Maria School of Law in your will or other planned gifts, please contact Donna Heiser, Chief Advancement and Communications Officer at 239-687-5405 or email@example.com. All inquiries are confidential.
Advocate | Summer 2015
Remembering His Eminence Edward Cardinal Egan,
Missed, but not forgotten ... Shock and sadness greeted us on March 5, 2015 as we received the news of our beloved Cardinal Egan’s passing. A leader in the Church and in Catholic education, he had our heartfelt admiration and profound respect for his counsel, prayerful support and commitment to our mission. Cardinal Egan left his mark on Ave Maria School of Law and will long be missed, but not forgotten. “As a man of letters with a Doctorate in Canon Law, and as a Judge of the highest appellate Court of the Catholic Church, His Eminence, Edward Cardinal Egan, loved the law. He was revered by the Ave Maria School of Law community, and indeed the nation and was an esteemed member of our Board of Governors since 2002. We called upon His Eminence many times over the years to help chart the course for our law school, and came to depend upon him for his wise counsel and unwavering support of our mission. Just weeks before his passing at a dinner in Naples in his honor, Cardinal Egan spoke eloquently of the need to train lawyers with a commitment to faith and reason, a hallmark of the Catholic legal tradition,” said Kevin Cieply, President and Dean of Ave Maria School of Law. “Cardinal Egan will be greatly missed by the Ave Maria School of Law community; in particularly those of us on the Board who had the opportunity to work so closely with him over the last 12 plus years. He was always very generous with his time and counsel. He joined the board while he was still the Cardinal Archbishop of New York, even with all the demands on his time. Over the years, we benefited greatly from his practical and pastoral advice - especially as we addressed matters with long-term ramifications for the law school. He was a great blessing to the Church and the law school,” reflected Thomas S. Monaghan, Chairman of the Board and Founder of Ave Maria School of Law. “Ave Maria School of Law was the grateful recipient of a $50,000 bequest from the estate of His Eminence, Edward Cardinal Egan. We are humbled by this wonderful bequest from His Eminence, made all the more special for its designation to our law library.” said Dean Cieply. “We are also most grateful to receive a recent scholarship honoring His Eminence from Mr. and Mrs. Alan Gerry.” “Ave Maria School of Law was extremely blessed to have Cardinal Egan serve on our Board of Governors. Being a civil attorney himself, he had a deep affinity for our school which was expressed in his interactions with the faculty, staff and students. The board in particular benefited from his wise and pastoral counsel during his years of service. He will be missed, but not forgotten,” noted Mr. Monaghan.
May the Lord grant him eternal 16 avemarialaw.edu
Archbishop Emeritus of New York In Memory of His Eminence, Edward Cardinal Egan By Dean Emeritus and Professor of Law, Eugene R. Milhizer
I was deeply saddened to learn of the passing of His Eminence, Edward Cardinal Egan, who was at the time of his death a member of the Ave Maria School of Law Board of Governors. Cardinal Eganâ€™s experiences and accomplishments were by any measure extraordinary and diverse. He was a scholar who received a doctorate in Canon Law summa cum laude and a professor of Canon Law, and civil and criminal procedure. He was a jurist who served as auditor of the Sacred Roman Rota, which acts as the Supreme Court for Canon Law. He was also a pastor and a leader who served as Archbishop of New York from 2000-2009 and before that as Archbishop of Bridgeport, Connecticut. It was as Archbishop of New York that Cardinal Egan confronted perhaps his greatest challenge as a pastor, leader and person. When the jets crashed into the Twin Towers on the morning of September 11, 2001, Cardinal Egan was among the very first to be called upon by Mayor Giuliani. For the next several hours, and then for the next several weeks and months, Cardinal Egan traveled throughout the greater New York area to console the living and pray for the dead. The weight of these burdens must have been crushing. Yet, Cardinal Egan persevered and was instrumental in healing the city and its residents. It is not surprising that the Mayor called upon Cardinal Egan for his advice and leadership. Three Popes repeatedly called upon him for the same reasons. Popes, of course, have the prerogative to tap almost anyone for assistance. It is telling that three distinct and often differing Pontiffs, across many decades for a variety of purposes, would seek out Cardinal Egan. I came to know Cardinal Egan in 2008, when I became Acting Dean of Ave Maria School of Law. For the next six years, I relied upon his wisdom, common sense and experience to address the comparatively simple problems I confronted. The soundness of his advice was unfailing. But my fondest memories of Cardinal Egan do not concern what he did but rather who he was. Cardinal Egan was generous in every way. He was kind and patient. He was deep and profound. He was funny and joyful. He was holy and Christ centered. He was perhaps the most interesting person I have ever met.
Cardinal Egan also had the capacity to fill any space with optimism and hope. He was an imposing figure with a booming baritone voice. He spoke with a mesmerizing, almost musical cadence, which is not surprising given that he was an accomplished pianist. He would captivate any audience, be it a large crowd, a small gathering or a single partner in conversation. I take solace in knowing that Cardinal Egan is in heaven with many of his friends. And I am grateful that he is praying for me and Ave Maria School of Law, which he loved so passionately. -Eugene R. Milhizer, Dean Emeritus and Professor of Law
Advocate | Summer 2015
Up and O AVE MARIA SCHOOL OF LAW CELEBRATES COMMENCEMENT 2015 Ave Maria School of Law held its 13th Annual Commencement Exercises in May at Artis-Naples. The graduating class of 82 men and women from various states and several foreign countries celebrated their hard work and dedication over the past three years and shifted their focus towards the future. “When I was invited (to speak at the AMSL Commencement) I said yes immediately because I believe in the values of Ave Maria School of Law,” said the 2015 Commencement Speaker and Honorary Degree Recipient, General Peter Pace, the Sixteenth Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. General Peter Pace, the first Marine ever to serve as chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, gave solid professional advice for the graduating class. “You have positively earned the right to start at the bottom,” Pace said. “As you prepare … I have a couple of recommendations.” Pace advised the law graduates to do research on their future employers, run from anything they find ethically questionable, embrace and own up to mistakes, make decisions, have courage and above all have integrity. General Pace also received an Honorary Degree along with Board of Governors Member Richard L. Klaas and Dean Emeritus Eugene Milhizer. Christopher Antonio spoke on
behalf of the Class of 2015 congratulating his fellow students for all of their hard work. The Alumni Prayer for the Graduates was given by Ave Maria School of Law Alumni Association Vice President Jaime Hewitt ’14. This was the first Ave Maria School of Law Commencement for President and Dean Kevin Cieply as well as our Chaplain Monsignor Frank McGrath, who gave the invocation. In his speech, Dean Cieply spoke about the tight-knit community of the Law School and the principles that we hold dear.
“There are three key principles motivating everything we do here: we are a close community…we pursue academic excellence…and we pursue that academic excellence in the context of the Catholic intellectual tradition and natural law.”
Baccalaureate Mass, celebrated by Ave Maria School of Law Board of Governors Member Bishop Frank J. Dewane, was held at St. Agnes Catholic Church the night before Commencement. The Bishop’s inspiring homily was a highlight of Commencement weekend celebration. The new Alumni Reception and Pinning Ceremony was held on campus immediately followed the Mass. Graduates, family members, faculty and staff and friends of graduates all celebrated the Class of 2015’s accomplishments.
“I wanted to go to a Catholic law school for a long time. I loved the mission of the school, that it’s in Naples … I loved that it’s a smaller place, a smaller environment, and that’s what I got. I’m very happy.” Lauren Gibson ’15
Advocate | Summer 2015
Queen of Heaven Ball A festive evening celebrating the blessings of the season was enjoyed by all at Ave Maria School of Law’s Queen of Heaven Ball held in December at The Ritz-Carlton, Naples. Connie and Vinny Von Zwehl served as Co-Chairs for the very successful annual scholarship event that ushered in the holiday season. Honorary guests included Ambassador Michael Novak, American Catholic philosopher, novelist, 1994 recipient of the Templeton Prize and former Ambassador to The United Nations on Human Rights, and Thomas S. Monaghan, Chairman of the Ave Maria School of Law Board of Governors and Founder. It was truly a wonderful evening, featuring a holiday themed dinner and entertainment, along with silent and live auctions. A highlight of the event was the great success of the live auction, which featured special funding of the Thomas S. Monaghan Scholarship.
Vinny Von Zwehl, Monsignor McGrath, Thomas Monaghan, Connie Van Zwehl and Gigi Daniel
In their remarks, Mr. and Mrs. Von Zwehl noted that “You do not have to be in Naples very long before you realize that the place we call home is very special. When you can fill this lovely ballroom with folks who have come to honor the Queen of Heaven and support the Ave Maria School of Law, it speaks volumes for the hearts and minds of our residents. There are many chances to be generous in Southwest Florida, and we have seen so many of you at events that help children, education, health issues, aging, the arts and many other needs. An opportunity to aid the students who may one day address the challenges in all these areas draws us in and keeps us interested in the future of this Law School. You know that our future lies in the hands of those who will go forth from here and shape our nation for our grandchildren.”
Mark and Elizabeth Bonner, Moira and Jim Fennessey and President and Dean Kevin Cieply
Thank you to our alumnus Andrew Bennett ’13, an Associate Attorney at Salvatori, Wood, Buckel , Carmichael and Lottes for his touching “Tribute to our Founder”, to soloist Ashley Dorwart ‘16, harpist Kim Adamson and cellist Jeannine Cavaliere for their lovely holiday musical presentation. Our thanks as well to Stacey Deffenbaugh, NBC-2 News Weekend Anchor who served as Mistress of Ceremonies and to our Chaplain Monsignor Frank McGrath who gave an inspiring Invocation. We are grateful to the Ave Maria School of Law staff members, students and alumni volunteers for their work in making the event an overwhelming success.
Jaime Hewitt’14, Ashley Dorwart ‘16, William Stallings ‘15
Moira Fennessey bidding on an auction item
Christina and Cap Mona
Special thanks and gratitude are extended to our generous sponsors of the event, including the Naples Daily News, Butzel Long, Brown & Brown Insurance, Florida Blue, Life in Naples, Arthrex, Presstige Printing and Garlick, Hilfiker & Swift. “From the first entering class and through each successive new class, Ave Maria School of Law students receive a legal education rooted in the Catholic intellectual tradition,” remarked President and Dean Kevin Cieply. “They leave their studies understanding the harmony of faith and reason and prepared to fight to defend our Constitution, promote a Culture of Life, and advance the cause of justice and freedom for all. Through your support of the Scholarship Fund, you are a part of this noble enterprise, and much of what this Queen of Heaven Ball is about is recognizing your friendship and generosity. Thank you again for your support.” We are grateful to those who attended and supported our Queen of Heaven Ball, helping us to raise more than $200,000 for the Ave Maria School of Law Scholarship Fund. Your contributions have truly made a difference.
Advocate | Summer 2015
Welcome Your Excellency
Frank J. Dewane Bishop of the Diocese of Venice in Florida
We are honored to welcome His Excellency Frank J. Dewane, Bishop of the Diocese of Venice in Florida, as the newest member to our Board of Governors.
for a subsidiary of PepsiCo in New York City. Bishop Dewane began his studies for the priesthood at Notre Dame University in South Bend, Indiana, where he completed one year of philosophy. He then studied theology at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome. While in Rome, he completed advanced studies in canon law at the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas.
Bishop Dewane serves as the spiritual leader of more than 227,000 Catholics in the 10-county Diocese of Venice in Florida. He was appointed by Pope Benedict XVI in 2006 as the second Bishop of the Diocese. Bishop Dewane currently serves on a number of boards and committees, including the Pontifical Council “Cor Unum,” the charitable arm of the Holy See; the USCCB National Catholic Rural Life Committee as President of the Board of Directors which examines rural areas and determines what the Church is doing to help; the USCCB Committee on International Justice and Peace; and the Florida Catholic Conference Committee for Farmworker Justice and Immigration. He most recently joined Ave Maria School of Law Board of Governors. Bishop Dewane was born in Green Bay on March 9, 1950, the third child of Eleanor and Ben Dewane, devout Irish-Catholics who owned and operated a dairy farm. St. James Parish in Cooperstown, Wisconsin, was the center of community life for the Dewane family, which included four children. After high school graduation Bishop Dewane attended the University of Wisconsin where he earned a bachelor’s degree in Social Sciences, followed by a Master’s Degree in International Administration from The American University in Washington, D.C. Prior to entering the seminary, he worked for the National Broadcasting Corporation (NBC) in Moscow, Russia, and then
On July 16, 1988, Bishop Dewane was ordained to the priesthood and appointed to the Diocese of Green Bay as assistant pastor and has worked for the Diocesan Tribunal. In 1991 he was appointed to serve as a member of the Permanent Observer Mission of the Holy See to the United Nations in New York City. He had been serving in the Diocese of Green Bay as assistant pastor at Ss. Peter and Paul Parish in Green Bay, Wisconsin. From 1995 to 2001 Bishop Dewane served on the Pontifical Council “Cor Unum.” In 2001, he was appointed Under Secretary of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, a post he held at The Vatican until 2006. The primary responsibility of the Pontifical Council is to promote justice, peace, development and human rights world-wide. As Under Secretary, then-Monsignor Dewane was an official delegate of the Holy See to numerous international conferences and world summits. On April 25, 2006, Pope Benedict XVI named him Coadjutor Bishop of the Diocese of Venice in Florida. On July 25, 2006 Bishop Frank J. Dewane was installed as the second bishop.
“The addition of His Excellency to our Board provides us with an invaluable advisor who is not only intellectually gifted, but also an exceptional leader” —President and Dean Kevin Cieply
Ave Maria School of Law Board of Governors MR. PETER A. CARFAGNA
HIS EMINENCE ADAM CARDINAL MAIDA
MR. KEVIN CIEPLY
MR. THOMAS S. MONAGHAN
THE HONORABLE PATRICK J. CONLIN
MRS. CATHY RUSE
MOST REVERAND FRANK J. DEWANE
MR. RONALD J. RYCHLAK
Chairman and CEO, Magis, LLC
President and Dean, Ave Maria School of Law Michigan 22nd Circuit Court (Retired)
The Bishop of the Diocese of Venice in Florida
MR. JAMES WILLIAM FENNESSEY
President and CEO, Fennessey Buick, Inc.(Retired)
MR. THOMAS B. GARLICK
Managing Partner, Garlick, Hilfiker & Swift, LLP
MR. RICHARD KLAAS
Partner, Klaas Capital Group
Archbishop Emeritus of Detroit
Chairman of the Board, Ave Maria Foundation Senior Fellow for Legal Studies at the Family Research Council Mississippi Defense Lawyers Association Professor of Law, University of Mississippi School of Law
MR. MICHEL SAADEH
President and CEO, Vineyards Development Corporation
MR. EDWARD V. STAROS
Vice President and Managing Director, The Ritz-Carlton Resorts of Naples
MR. JAMES P. WHITE
Professor Emeritus of Indiana University and Consultant Emeritus, American Bar Association
The Ave Maria School of Law Board of Governors has granted tenure to Associate Professor Mark Bonner, Associate Professor Ligia De Jesús, and Associate Professor Brian Scarnecchia. We congratulate these distinguished professors on this distinction. Professor Mark Bonner began his legal career at the U.S. Department of Justice and served in a variety of capacities there for more than 25 years, including Assistant U.S. Attorney in Los Angeles and the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Resident Legal Advisor in Moscow. For 10 years, he directed the investigation and prosecution of high-profile federal cases involving international and domestic terrorism. He subsequently joined the U.S. Department of Treasury, where he held the position of Senior Advisor and Chief of Staff to the Undersecretary of the Treasury for Enforcement. Prior to coming to Ave Maria, Professor Bonner served as a Senior Advisor in the United States Department of Homeland Security’s Office of International Affairs, where he oversaw the Department’s activities within the Group of 8 (G8) countries. He also taught as an adjunct professor of law at Georgetown University Law Center for 13 years. Professor Ligia M. De Jesús is an Associate Professor at Ave Maria School of Law. Her scholarship focuses on the unborn child’s right to life in international human rights law, particularly, in Latin America and the Caribbean. Courses taught by her include International law, International Human Rights Law, and Law and Children. Before joining the Ave Maria School of Law faculty, Professor De Jesús served as a legal advisor on right to life and family law issues for the National Congress of Honduras. She also worked with several United Nations agencies, including UNICEF’s regional office for Latin America and the Caribbean in Panama. Professor De Jesús was awarded the prestigious Rómulo Gallegos fellowship by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights in Washington, D.C. in 2001. She is a Board member of the International Solidarity and Human Rights Institute (ISHRI). She received LL.M. degrees from Harvard Law School and the University of Groningen in The Netherlands. Professor Brian Scarnecchia brings to the School of Law experience as a faculty member, an attorney in private practice, and as an assistant county prosecutor. As a former member of the Franciscan University of Steubenville faculty, he has chaired Franciscan’s Department of Humanities and Catholic Social Thought, and directed the University’s Human Life Studies and Legal Studies programs. Professor Scarnecchia lectures on human rights, natural law, bioethics, and cultural and political issues both nationally and internationally. To obtain tenure, a faculty member has the task of establishing demonstrated excellence in teaching, a serious commitment to scholarly research and publication, and a proven record of service to the Law School. Associate Professor Mark Bonner, Associate Professor Ligia De Jesús, and Associate Professor Brian Scarnecchia have fully satisfied these standards and have demonstrated an unwavering commitment to the Mission of our Law School. We look forward to their continuing contributions to our Law School in the years to come.
ANNOUNCING THE FIRST AMSL PRESIDENT’S ADVISORY COUNCIL “It is with great pleasure and my distinct honor to announce the formation of the first President’s Advisory Council for Ave Maria School of Law,” said Dean Kevin Cieply. Council members include: Robert Baldini, Neal Boortz, Terrance Flynn, Patrick Longe, Mitzi Magin, Mary Parent ’12, Adjunct Assistant Professional Specialist in Film, Television and Theater, University of Notre Dame, John Schmieding, Vice President , General Counsel, Arthrex, Vincent Trosino, Allen Weiss, NCH Healthcare - President and CEO, and Hank White, AMSL - Adjunct Professor .
Advocate | Summer 2015
Alumni: Notes James D. Fox ’03 of the law firm Roetzel & Andress has recently received the highest Martindale-Hubbell® Peer Review ranking possible — an AV® Preeminent.™
Christine Elaine King ’12
John B. Manos ‘03 was named Vice President and General Counsel of EWTN Global Catholic Network. Joshua Skinner ‘03 from the Dallas law firm Fanning Harper Martinson Brandt & Kutchin, P.C., has been selected to the 2015 Texas Rising Stars list, marking the sixth consecutive time he has been honored among the state’s top young lawyers. Christopher Esseltine ‘05 joined Holland & Hart’s Healthcare practice in Salt lake City, Utah. Jacob McCellan ‘05 joined the public finance group of the law firm of Bose McKinney & Evans LLP.
Jaime Hewitt ’14
Nicholas Pappalardo ’07 is Chief of Staff to the Transport Minister of Canada. Paul M. Mersino ‘08 has been recognized as a Michigan Super Lawyers Rising Star in Business Litigation and Oakland County Executive’s Elite 40 Under 40 Class of 2015. He was also elected shareholder by the law firm Butzel Long.
Andrew Bodoh ’10
M. Catherine (Katie Wilcox) Waskiewicz ’09 is an Assistant Attorney General at the Michigan Department of the Attorney General and recently married to Steve Waskiewicz. Andrew Bodoh ’10 is an associate litigation attorney at Thomas H. Roberts and Associates, P.C. Kyu S. Cho ’10 is an associate attorney at the Law Office of John J. Sheehan in Boston, Massachusetts. John Shea ‘11, (AMSL’s youngest graduate at 21) after practicing law in New York City, co-founded a firm called the BYG Group which consults U.S. technology companies that are looking to expand into the Asia Pacific region.
Alex Swoyer ’13
James Bock ’12 currently works at the Public Defender’s office in the state of Missouri and volunteers as a pro-life advocate. Ron Kezeske ‘12 is currently running for a seat on the Collier County Commission.
Paul M. Mersino ’08
Christine Elaine King ‘12 became partner at McQuagge & King law Firm in Fort Myers, FL. Jessica Palombi ‘12 is an associate at Willis & Davidow law firm, practicing real estate law in the Naples area. David Riegner ‘12 joined intellectual property firm Quinn Law Group, PLLC, in Novi, Michigan. Keri L. Armpriester ’13 is an Assistant State Attorney, for the Florida State Attorney’s office in the Thirteenth Judicial Circuit.
John Shea ’11
Jenna Kopp ’13 is an Assistant State Attorney for the Miami-Dade State Attoreny’s Office, in Miami, Florida. Alex Swoyer ’13 joined Breitbart News Network as its newest Capitol Hill reporter, covering politics, policy, and the 2016 elections in Washington. Olivia A. Weil’ 13 joined Montgomery McCracken as an associate in the business department in the New York office. W. Brett Branham ‘14, is an associate with the Clemmons Law Firm in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Matthew Catania ’14 is an Assistant District Attorney, for the Office of the District Attorney, Delaware County, PA Jaime Hewitt ’14 is an associate attorney at Adamczyk Law Firm, PLLC in Naples, FL. Richard Lavaiere ’14 is an associate litigation attorney for Parker Waichman LLP. Ashley Stetson ’14 is a Deputy Prosecutor Prosecuting Attorney’s Office of Pend Oreille County, in the State of Washington. Joseph Tompkins ’14 is a Judicial Staff Attorney, in the Thirteenth Judicial Circuit of Florida.
We welcome your information and news. Please send your updates or corrections to Donna Anthus, Director of Alumni Affairs at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jenna Kopp ’13
Keeping in Touch and Launching Careers AMSL campus may be rooted in Naples, FL, but our community branches out all over the world! To nurture our growing community, we are continually working on ways to strengthen our connections by increasing our communications, providing great networking opportunities for AMSL law students and alumni, and building our presence online as well as out into the world. AMSL law students and alumni are prepared to practice and are ready to make an immediate contribution to your organization.
“We constantly receive inquiries for recommendations-whether it be to handling a case, media needing an expert opinion or fellow alumni looking to connect,” said Director of Alumni Affairs, Donna Anthus.
“Our goal is to fully support our alumni by increasing communication and awareness.” For more information about Alumni Affairs, please contact Donna Anthus, Director of Alumni Affairs email@example.com
“Our students and alumni are our strongest asset,” said Director of Career Services, Jennifer Lucas-Ross. “They are fully prepared to be a strong legal force in any professional setting. Our strong curriculum, with an emphasis on ethics, professionalism, externship and clinical programs, and research and writing gives our students and alumni the proper knowledge and expertise that they need to contribute cogently and effectively.” For more information about Career Services, please contact Jennifer Lucas-Ross, Esq., Director of Career Services at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ave Maria School of Law (school page)
Ave Maria School of Law (school page)
Ave Maria School of Law Alumni (Official)
Ave Maria School of Law Alumni (Official)
AMSL Career Services
AMSL Career Services
Advocate | Summer 2015
Save the Date for Our
15th Year Anniversary Celebration! Join us
for a wonderful weekend celebration of Ave Maria School of Lawâ€™s 15th year anniversary to be held January 15-18, 2016. We start the weekend celebration with our 15th Anniversary Celebration Gala to be held on Friday, January 15, 2016. More details to follow. This yearâ€™s gala will feature our keynote speaker Most Reverend Charles J. Chaput, Archbishop of Philadelphia. As a member of the Prairie Band Potawatomi tribe, Bishop Chaput is the second Native American to be consecrated a bishop and the first Native American archbishop. Bishop Chaput will be hosting His Holiness Pope Francis in September on his visit to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The gala is followed by more AMSL community events for alumni, faculty, staff, family and friends. For more information on our 15th Year Anniversary Celebration, please visit our website, www.avemarialaw.edu.
Come celebrate with us! Just ranked #1 in Florida for Bar Passage!!* *February 2015
AVE MARIA SCHOOL OF LAW 1025 Commons Circle Naples, Florida 34119 avemarialaw.edu
The Princeton Review
BEST 169 LAW SCHOOLS 2015