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GRADUATIONS Tampa Bay Ceremony

Michigan Ceremony Sabrina Mentor provides the valedictory remarks, speaking about how WMU-Cooley faculty go above and beyond to teach students the ethical values in the profession of law.

Sabrina Mentor provides the valedictory remarks.

Julianne Holt, Hillsborough County public defender, speaks to WMU-Cooley graduates during the law school’s recent commencement.

The summer 2016 class was named after Harlan Fiske Stone. Stone served as an associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court in 1925 and then became the chief justice of the U.S. Supreme Court in 1941.

“Let us always remember to take the time to understand not just the legal aspects of each client’s case, but that person’s state of mind and the life-altering impact to their life should we fail, even in the slightest, to always do what is in their best interest.”

During the valedictory remarks, Khadija Swims told the graduating class they have everything needed to be excellent attorneys and there is much work to be done for those individuals they will serve.

“We are in the midst of an important time in American history. We have the power to impact this nation’s future through the work that we do or don’t do. Take pride in the profession. Remember why you chose this path and use your skills and knowledge to do good and advocate for justice and change in the world.” KHADIJA SWIMS


President and Dean Don LeDuc; Julianne Holt, Hillsborough County public defender; Sabrina Mentor, WMU-Cooley graduate; and Jeff Martlew, retired WMU-Cooley associate dean.

Holt, who received her bachelor’s degree from the University of South Florida and law degree from South Texas College of Law, told students to have a passion for practicing law. She noted that individuals lives will be affected everyday by their work as practicing attorneys.

“I have been a practicing attorney for 36 years and get up every morning loving what I do.”

Tampa Bay campus Associate Dean Jeff Martlew (right), presents Nestor Gonzalez his diploma.

Khadija Swims

Christina Pettway receives her diploma from President and Dean Don LeDuc.

(Left-right) State Bar of Michigan President Lawrence P. Nolan (Cooley Class, 1976) and President and Dean Don LeDuc. Nolan provided the keynote for WMU-Cooley’s graduation ceremony on Sept. 25.

Nolan, who earned his bachelor’s degree from Western Michigan University and his law degree from WMU-Cooley Law School, spoke about the joys in obtaining a law degree and the importance of adapting to change.

“The joy of being a lawyer is that the journey really never ends. It continues to change along the way. Adaptability is the key to survival. The wonderful beauty of law school is change. You will always be challenged to think.” LAWRENCE P. NOLAN




Benchmark | Winter 2016  

This issue of Benchmark prominently features our dear friend, alumnus and nationally renowned artist Gordon Boardman, who has made a monumen...

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