Miami Law Magazine Spring 2019

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DEAN PATRICIA D. WHITE A Decade of Innovative Leadership


MAKE Your CAREER PIVOT INCREASE Your PROSPECTS Post Graduate Law Studies can work with your schedule— Part-time, Full-time, and Online Study Options available ¡¡ Entertainment, Arts and Sports Law ¡¡ Estate Planning ¡¡ International Arbitration ¡¡ International Law ¡¡ Maritime Law ¡¡ Real Estate/Property Development ¡¡ Tax Law ¡¡ Taxation of Cross-Border Investment

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Miami Law Magazine vol. 7


PATRICIA D. WHITE Dean and Professor of Law STEPHANIE COX Assistant Dean for External Affairs LAUREN BEILEY Director of Marketing ELIZABETH ESTEFAN Senior Graphic Designer and Project Manager, Magazine Designer PATRICIA MOYA Senior Graphic Designer


CATHARINE SKIPP Director of Media Relations and Public Affairs


MICHELLE VALENCIA Director of Communications Photographers JENNY ABREU MARVELL GAY JAMES NICKEL JOSHUA PREZANT Miami Law Magazine is published by the University of Miami School of Law Copyright © 2019 University of Miami School of Law Address correspondence to Miami Law Magazine University of Miami School of Law 1311 Miller Drive Coral Gables, Florida 33146

78 2 NEWS BRIEFS See what's happening in and around Miami Law.

9 STUDENTS We shine a light on some of Miami Law's remarkable students.

17 FACULTY Read about Miami Law's faculty and their scholarship.

40 FEATURES Delve into Dean Patricia D. White's decade of visionary leadership.

Miami Law clinics give a voice to the unheard. Miami Law Magazine is mailed free of charge to Miami Law alumni and friends of the University. Opinions expressed in these pages are those of the individuals and do not necessarily reflect official positions of the University. The University of Miami is an equal opportunity/affirmative action institution. Please accept our sincerest apologies for any errors or omissions.

57 ALUMNI We highlight some of our outstanding alumni and their impact on the legal profession.

74 PHILANTHROPY Read about the generosity of our alumni and friends.

83 THE LAST WORD Assistant Dean Marcy Cox helps students find their place in the legal profession.




in Client Recoveries— Investor Rights Clinic Hits Milestone As the only securities arbitration clinic in Florida providing free assistance to small claim investors, current and former student interns celebrated a notable milestone for Miami Law’s Investor Rights Clinic—reaching and crossing the $1 million mark in client recoveries. Given the limits on the size of the claims that the clinic accepts, the settlements and arbitration awards in favor of its clients represent a significant achievement. South Florida is no stranger to vulnerable investors exposed to the misconduct of financial advisors. As a result, the clinic's clients are mostly elderly investors who believe they have been victims of fraud or suffered significant financial loss, and have claims that are too small for them to find legal representation. The clinic has handled numerous cases on behalf of retirees placed into illiquid securities, such as non-traded Real Estate Investment Trusts, reverse convertible securities, “junk bond” funds and speculative private placements (one involving a Ponzi scheme). “Working in the Investor Rights Clinic was one of my most valuable experiences in law school,” recent graduate Haley Weiss, J.D. ’18, said. “The clinic gave me the opportunity to interact with clients and analyze complex legal issues, all while giving back to our community by helping those who could not otherwise afford an attorney. I am so proud of the clinic for reaching a million dollars in recoveries!” n

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Students from the Investor Rights Clinic celebrate milestone.



st Place and Best Oralist in CKP Circuit Bankruptcy Competition

Miami Law’s Charles C. Papy Moot Court team of 2018 graduates Dan Halperin, J.D./M.B.A., Adam Stolz, and Luis Reyes, won first place at the regional 11th Circuit Bankruptcy competition for the 2018 Cristol, Kahn, Paskay Cup last February. Halperin was also awarded best oralist in the competition. The CKP Cup serves as the regional warm-up for Duberstein Bankruptcy Moot Court Competition. Law schools from the 11th Circuit (Florida, Georgia, and Alabama) compete in the CKP before heading to New York City in early

March for the national bankruptcy competition. In past years at the Duberstein Moot, Miami Law placed 2nd in 2017 and 2015. “Winning CKP was an amazing experience,” said Halperin. “However, none of this would have been possible without the help of our amazing coaches: Professor Patricia Redmond, A.B. ’75, J.D. ’79, director of Miami Law's Bankruptcy Assistance Clinic, Leah Aaronson, Freddi Mack, and Dan Narciso. They continually pushed us during the preparation process to think outside the box. I cannot thank them enough.” n


Clinic Lawsuit Allows Thousands to Receive Disaster Food Assistance Post-Irma


The Health Rights Clinic settled a lawsuit in May 2018 with the state and federal governments to reopen applications for disaster food relief following the fall 2017 hurricane. The agreement allowed more than 158,000 disabled Floridians to apply for assistance. In the aftermath of Hurricane Irma, many Floridians sustained damage to their homes and were in dire need of food assistance. Last October, tens of thousands of Floridians waited outdoors for hours in long lines to be interviewed for the food benefits, known as D-SNAP. However, thousands of people with disabilities were unable to stand in lines to apply. On November 2, 2017 lawyers from Miami Law’s Health Rights Clinic, with Florida Legal Services and the Community Justice Project, sued the Florida Department of Children and Families and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The lawyers filed on behalf of the Miami Workers Center, New Florida Majority, and a class of disabled individuals claiming that the system discriminated against those with disabilities who could not endure the conditions. “The clinic helped me 100%,” said clinic client Theresa Clyburn. “They were very professional, very sympathetic to my needs, and they had my back.” “This has the potential to benefit more than 150,000 individuals who lost subsistence last fall, perhaps awarding persons with disabilities as much as $47 million in food aid,” said JoNel Newman, professor of Clinical Legal Education & director, Health Rights Clinic. “We could not be more pleased with DCF’s effort to make things right for these people.” DCF is also committed to changing its process going forward. n F OR MOR E



Miami Law Holds Its


First-Year Students

From the impact of artificial intelligence on doctors and lawyers to the NFL’s controversial national anthem policy and the player, quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who knelt for the Star-Spangled Banner before games in 2016 as a protest against social injustice. The Legal Impact Hack dealt with a range of issues, using "Living Law" talks by law professors to orient students to certain problems. Living Law talks are a series of dynamic, short faculty lectures. “Hackathons are very common in the tech space, especially because they help participants develop the capacity for teamwork, creativity, and innovation—essential skills for any professional, including attorneys,” said James. “Hacks are typically anchored in problems, and our orientation team realized during a brainstorming session that our Living Law Talks already presented students with problems that could serve as the focus for hacks—and the idea was born.” n

Photo by Evan Garcia

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As a high school history teacher, Kristen Calzadilla became passionate about human rights issues, especially those in the area of forced labor in global supply chains. “Teaching so many students who are one day going to comprise our workforce made me care tremendously about all the young people across the world who are enduring harsh working conditions,” she said. “It’s a problem that is very solvable, but it’s just going to take a lot of time, patience, and creativity.” This past August, Calzadilla, now a first-year student at Miami Law, took what she considers an important personal step in the ongoing process of ending slave labor: participating in the law school’s inaugural Legal Impact Hack, an exercise that Osamudia James, then acting dean and professor of law, said called upon “diverse groups of bright, energetic, and engaged people to consider some of society’s thorniest issues.”

Former Acting Dean and Professor of Law Osamudia James with first-year students during the Legal Impact Hack.


University of Miami Law Professor Wins a Roddenberry Fellowship The Roddenberry Foundation named Professor Caroline Bettinger-López a winner of a Roddenberry Fellowship for her COURAGE in Policing Project (Community Oriented and United Responses to Address Gender Violence and Equality). The Roddenberry Fellowship was created in 2017 with $1 million in inaugural funding to catalyze work that helps make the United States more inclusive and equitable. From a pool of nearly 3,000 applicants, 20 Roddenberry Fellows were chosen to join the fellowship’s first-ever cohort, which began in January 2018. Each fellow will receive a $50,000 grant and tailored

support to build and scale their initiatives over 12 months. “As we collectively experience this current watershed moment on gender violence in the U.S., we must think creatively about how to move from #MeToo to #RealChange,” said Bettinger-López, who returned to Miami Law after serving as the White House Advisor on Violence Against Women and a senior advisor to Vice President Joe Biden from 2015-2017. “A coordinated and systematic response to gender violence in every sector—including law enforcement—is needed to create lasting change. The Roddenberry Fellowship will help to pave the way for making that change real.” Bettinger-López’s COURAGE in Policing Project works with community-based organizations, police departments, and national leaders on gender violence and policing to enhance law enforcement response to domestic violence and sexual assault against women—especially women of color and immigrant women—and LGBTQIA individuals. n

The American Immigration Lawyers Association recognized Rebecca Sharpless, professor of Clinical Legal Education and director of Miami Law’s Immigration Clinic with the 2018 Elmer Fried Excellence in Teaching Award. Established in 1997, the Fried Teaching Award recognizes outstanding professors in the area of immigration law. It is given out each year by the American Immigration Lawyers Association whose mission is to promote justice, advocate for fair and reasonable immigration law and policy, and advance the quality of immigration and nationality law and practice. With her clinic students, Sharpless represents indigent noncitizens in removal proceedings and engages in litigation in U. S. District Court and before the U.S. Courts of Appeals.

Photo by Jenny Abreu

Professor Rebecca Sharpless Receives AILA’s 2018 Elmer Fried Excellence in Teaching Award The clinic’s recent work has included defending Somali men and women who were shackled and abused during a botched deportation flight, challenging Miami-Dade County’s policy of detaining jailed noncitizens for ICE, and advocating against post-earthquake deportations to Haiti through human rights advocacy and the fact-finding report, “Aftershocks: The Human Impact of U.S. Post-Earthquake Deportations to Haiti.” n F OR MOR E


Photo by Jenny Abreu



Photo by Jenny Abreu


Law Review Symposium Explores Impact of Technology on the Legal Profession

NEW Criminal

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Justice Practicum Gives Students Hands-On Experience


In spring 2018, Miami Law established a new Criminal Justice Policy Reform Practicum, where students can do hands-on work with community or national organizations to address criminal justice reform. The 2-credit practicum is in conjunction with the Criminal Justice Policy Reform Seminar, both led by Professor Donna Coker, whose scholarship focuses on criminal law, and gender and race inequality. “With approximately two million people behind bars, the U.S. leads the world in the percentage of people behind bars,” Coker said. “These incarceration rates are marked by shocking racial disparities. African American women are imprisoned at a rate nearly three times that of white women. Nearly 40% of male prisoners and 25% of female prisoners are African Americans, even though African Americans are only about 13% of the U.S. population.” Coker is committed to looking at an entire system response. “Too often fair treatment for victims is presumed to somehow be in opposition to fair treatment of those who are accused of committing harm. The reality is that the biases that negatively shape police responses to those accused of crime also shape their responsiveness to victims of crime.” Students in the practicum will spend 100 hours working on criminal justice policy reform initiatives with community or national organizations that are meeting victims’ needs and creating fair processes for those accused or convicted of having committed a crime. n

The University of Miami Law Review explored the growing presence of technology in the legal profession during its annual 2018 symposium, titled “Hack to the Future.” The event included a series of panel discussions on areas from artificial intelligence to cyber security to blockchain technology. The forward-looking keynote address from American Bar Association Past President and Miami Law alumna Hilarie Bass, J.D. ’81, connected changes in practice to needed changes in preparation. She discussed the creation of the Commission on the Future of Legal Education, a body aimed at anticipating future changes in the legal profession and exploring alternative methods to training and testing law students, which she recently oversaw at the ABA. “When I became president of the ABA, one of my first decisions was to try and reshape the path of legal education,” she said. “What the ‘Future of Legal Ed Commission’ is really focused on, is trying to align what we’re teaching students in law school and the future skills they will need in 2050.” The commission, chaired by Miami Law Dean Patricia White, consists of many notable members, including celebrated futurist and author Richard Susskind and General Counsel of Spotify and Miami Law alumnus Horacio Gutiérrez, J.D. ’98. Bass went on to praise Miami Law’s pedigree of innovation, in light of the rapidly changing practices in the legal profession, she said, “The University of Miami is really at the forefront of looking at these issues.” n



Certified by U.S. Patent and Trademark Office


The United States Patent and Trademark Office granted Miami Law’s Larry Hoffman|Greenberg Traurig Startup Practicum formal certification so that its students can appear directly before the USPTO on behalf of their clients in trademark and patent applications. Miami Law is one of only twenty-six law schools in the nation, and the only one in the state of Florida, to receive this certification for both trademarks and patents from the USPTO. Dan Ravicher, a registered patent attorney who has prosecuted and litigated patents and trademarks, directs the Startup Practicum and will co-supervise Miami Law students appearing before the USPTO, along with local intellectual property attorneys, and Miami Law adjunct professors, Jaime Vining, Amy Foust, and Dan Barsky. In addition to providing Miami Law students with experience practicing directly before the USPTO, clients of the Startup Practicum will also receive benefits from its certification. For example, the Startup Practicum can ask that two patent applications per year be given priority review by the USPTO, meaning they will be acted on months, if not years, earlier than they would otherwise. “By being certified by the USPTO, Miami Law students in the Startup Practicum will now be able to gain direct experience drafting and filing patent and trademark applications, answering formal office actions made by the USPTO, and communicating with patent examiners and trademark examining attorneys,” said Ravicher. “This is an unparalleled opportunity that will provide our students at Miami Law practical legal experience they can’t otherwise get while also helping our clients seek and secure the intellectual property rights that are critical to their businesses and organizations.” n y Foust, Dan Barsky

rs Jaime Vining, Am

(L-R) Adjunct Professo

with Dan Ravicher




Students Simulate $30 Million Purchase and Sale of Minor League Baseball Team Students in Professor Peter Carfagna's short course

Accomplished sports industry Senior Partner Attorneys Charles Baker and Irwin Raij from O’Melveny & Myers worked with students in the hypothetical purchase of a baseball team as part of Visiting Professor Peter Carfagna’s experiential learning short course, “Purchase and Sale of a Minor League Baseball team.” Aimed at providing practical experience in the sports law field, the course saw students partake in a dynamic, months-long negotiating and contract drafting simulation in which they worked in teams to represent the buying and selling sides of a transaction involving the $30 million Charlotte Knights Minor League Baseball team. Throughout, students learned about complicated sportrelated deals and mastered skills relating to analyzing, drafting, and negotiating the various “moving parts” of such agreements. Baker and Raij acted as senior partners throughout the process, offering guidance and feedback to students—Raij on the selling side and Baker on the buying side.

“The students are very, very lucky to have exposure to them live, in real time, and up-close,” Carfagna said. Once students were split into buying and selling teams they began drafting and negotiating the deal, which entailed representations and warranties, indemnification, arbitration/ dispute resolution, conditions prior to closing, and several other key clauses. Each team was also assigned a Senior Associate from O’Melveny & Myers who would provide advice throughout the drafting. The students engaged in weekly conference calls with their assigned Partners and Associates to discuss progress and receive feedback on the draft agreement. Along the way, circumstances were altered and new facts came into light, requiring students to do additional research and renegotiate their deals accordingly, closely resembling a real-life sports property negotiation. n

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Renowned Brazilian Judge Sérgio Moro Speaks on Exposing Corruption


In a lecture last spring, the Brazilian judge whose office spearheaded a massive corruption and bribery investigation said that his country’s legal system and democracy are stronger as a result. Judge Sérgio Moro, whom many hail as a modern-day savior of Brazil’s legal system and by de facto its democracy, offered his insights on “the environment of systemic corruption that was uncovered” by his office’s ongoing investigation in a public lecture this past Spring at the University of Miami. as a shield. It would be great if a judge could work at Hosted by Miami Law’s International Graduate his desk to do their work, but you need allies to block Law Programs and the Brazilian-American Chamber of attempts to obstruct justice,” he said. Commerce of Florida, Moro offered several reflections, “Operation Lavo Jato/Car Wash is not a conquest among them the need for ample resources to conduct of the police or the courts or the justice system, but such an expansive investigation; extensive international instead a conquest by Brazilian democracy,” Moro said. support; and a rule of transparency. “While corruption is shameful, there is no shame in He highlighted, too, the importance of public opinion the enforcement of the law, and the exposure of public as an ally when investigating leaders who believe corruption is an honor to a nation.” n themselves to be above the law. “Public opinion can work


CIRCUITOUS ROUTE TO LAW SCHOOL Makes Perfect Sense for Biologist and Environmental Science Advocate By Carlos Harrison


he path from the sex life of fungi to law school is hardly traditional. But “NON-TRADITIONAL”

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The other way, of course, would be “overachiever.” As in, mother of five—ranging from almost 8 to 17; high school graduate at 16; environmental biologist, eco-friendly entrepreneur, and an author who decided to go to law school almost two decades after she left graduate school. Her untraditional trajectory, though, began long before that. She was found wandering the streets in Korea when she was three years old. She had a note pinned to her shirt. It read, “Kim, Won-Hee. August 20, 1972.” In Korean. Adopted by Italian-American New Yorkers, Pinto grew up in Hollywood, Florida. There, she says, her mother and grandparents pushed her toward a career in medicine or the law. She chose mechanical engineering. She got into the University of Miami, and quickly realized engineering wasn’t for her. She quit after a year. Completely. She left school, took a year off, and then went to Miami Dade College for a year before enrolling at Florida International University. Loving the Life of Fungi By then, she says, she knew what she wanted to study: biology. And religion. “Which was just completely for personal interest,” she says.

Working in a laboratory with one of her professors, she became fascinated with the love life of fungi. Parasexuality in asexual pathogenic fungi, to be exact. “Once I started working on microbes and genetics, I fell in love with the whole study—with the evolution, with the genetics, with the amazing kind of abilities, I guess, that microbes have,” she says. She graduated with dual degrees, a B.S. in biology and a B.A. in religion. With honors. Then she moved across the country to pursue a Ph.D. in environmental science, policy, and management at the University of California, Berkeley, where she was the recipient of the George Carroll Plant Pathology Fellowship and served on the Graduate Programs Committee. Three years later, she decided she had had enough. “I decided that I don’t want to be doing research on fungus,” she says. “I, basically, was being pigeonholed. So I left.” Motherhood and a Shift in Career Focus She moved back to South Florida to be with her then-husband, and soon enough, she says, “I started a family and that was it.” She went to work with the U.S. Department of Agriculture as a plant protection and quarantine technician, climbing into the bellies of airplanes inspecting cargo and questioning passengers at the airport and seaport in Miami.

A few years and a second child later, Pinto divorced. With a second marriage, she spread her creative wings. She teamed up with her sister-in-law to author a children’s book, The Loudest Boy Ever, based on her experience after her second son was born. “I just remember being struck by how noisy everything seemed with the new baby and how noisy my son seems,” Pinto says. “So, the book kind of came to mind.” Then Pinto launched a consignment/gift store called “Loudgirl Exchange,” selling children’s clothing and environmentally friendly toys and products. “We had a company that did all wooden toys and things like that,” she says. “We actually had a woman who would grow herbs in her backyard, basically, and make handmade bug spray, mosquito spray, and soaps and we would sell them.” Interest in Environmental Protection Segues to Law School Then came the Great Recession. The store closed. Pinto turned her attention to politics. Soon enough, she found herself working in places where policy intersected with science. And with her family. One of her oldest son’s science camp directors ran a nonprofit environmental group, the Urban Paradise Guild, dedicated to environmental consciousness and combatting the effects of sea level rise by establishing sustainable urban ecosystems. Pinto volunteered and


Photo by Joshua Prezant CHA NG E


served as the group’s lead scientist and director of education and community engagement. In 2017, she co-founded March for Science Miami, aimed at countering one of her pet peeves. “Part of the reason why there is a March for Science, for me, is because I really feel like human beings, in general, don’t have a basic science or biology education that allows us to deal with the environment,” she says. “The March for Science is about that kind of access to accurate information and evidence-based policymaking and all that stuff.” Law school came as a logical extension, and Miami Law the perfect place. “I think it might be an avenue to really do something to affect some sort of change,” says Pinto. “UM had the Environmental Justice Clinic, and they have the HOPE (Public Interest Resource) Center … It seemed to me they have a much more social aspect, a social justice aspect, to their law as well as having all the other typical law avenues.” She started helping on some of the clinic’s cases over the summer and has become an intern there. She also is editing for Jotwell, an online law journal founded by Miami Law’s Laurie Silvers and Mitchell Rubenstein Distinguished Professor A. Michael Froomkin. Plus, she’s worked with former UM President Donna Shalala on a Gun Reform Working Committee to come up with research and solutions to gun violence. All fits with her long-term goal—for a nontraditional job. “I would love if I could find a place where I can help work on those cases where it’s very direct personal remediation, but then also write and influence policy and scholarly work.” n


Photo by Joshua MIPrezant A MI

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WAYWARD PATH TO LAW SCHOOL Plays Key Role in 3L’s Future as Public Defender


THE DIE WAS CAST EARLY. AND, MALIK RAMELIZE SAYS, DELIBERATELY. Sharing a name with one of America’s greatest legal minds meant he’d at least think about the law. So, he says, when his father gave him the middle name Thurgood, “he knew exactly what he was doing. There’s no doubt that he gave me that name with the hope of me one day becoming an attorney. And I thank him for it because I love the name. Thurgood Marshall was not only one of the greatest Supreme Court justices of our time, he’s one of the most influential people of our time. He broke barriers that people thought couldn’t be broken.” And while those are certainly big shoes to fill, Malik Thurgood Ramelize seems determined to make a mark of his own, beginning with the lives of individuals, and especially since he knows the people he meets in jail and defends in court could easily have been him.

Growing Up on the Streets “I came from an area where I’ve been to jail, where I’ve been shot at, where I’ve had interactions with police, where I’ve watched my friends die,” says the Miami Scholar. “I was running the streets. I was hanging out with the wrong crowd.” His dad was an assistant state attorney but moved away to Chicago to work in the juvenile justice system there. Ramelize stayed behind in Delray Beach with his mother, a pediatrician. “We come from a long line of helping other people,” he says with a chuckle. Growing up, though, he got an uncomfortably large exposure to the law, he says, mostly from the wrong side. But what he saw made him think he could be different, and that he could make a difference.

“Every year since I was 14, I’ve had at least two friends die. And whether that’s from gang violence or whether that’s from drugs or whether that’s just an automobile accident, I noticed how little things that might seem insignificant to other people really changed the course of their lives,” he says. “I saw it in my friends and I wanted to help other people overcome that.” Navigating His Way to Help Others Throughout high school and beyond, though, he still hadn’t figured out how. He went to community college in Gainesville, at least in part to separate himself from his neighborhood environment, and considered going into psychology. He came back to South Florida two years later with the idea of working in the law, but not necessarily as a lawyer. He enrolled at Florida Atlantic University as a criminal justice major. A professor there inspired him. Ramelize joined FAU’s criminal law society, applied for law school, and interned at the Broward County Public Defender’s office before he even began at Miami Law. “They always say that you do your first internship at the public defender’s office, and you either immediately love it or know it’s what you want to do. Or you hate it and you’re like, ‘I’m over this.’” Aha Moment Interning for Broward Public Defender Leads to Law School “I immediately loved it,” he says. “I thrived. I loved interacting with the clients. I loved interacting with attorneys. I loved the adversarial system in general, where it’s a perfect chess match between the state attorneys and the public defenders and the defense attorneys and the judge.” One of the first things he noticed when he got to UM, though, was that

there was no Criminal Law Society. “I said to myself, ‘Well, this is weird,’” Ramelize says. “’How can we have the Bankruptcy Law Society, the Immigration Law Society, all of these different societies, and we don’t have a criminal law one?’” He teamed up with Regan Woodbury, J.D. ’18, to change that. By the end of his first semester, they had revived the dormant society. Two years later, he’s its president. And now, in addition to recruiting members and organizing events for the group, he’s racking up honors as a J.D. student and turning his attention to other lawrelated activities on and off campus. He’s treasurer of Miami Law’s chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union, was inducted into the Society of Bar and Gavel, and serves in the empowered youth program, helping young people build skills for success. He was awarded the Thomas S. Wilson Jr. Scholarship, which is given to minority students who have shown a strong dedication to social justice and public interest. And he went back to jail—to work with clients as a legal intern for the Palm Beach County Public Defender’s Office. “Those are the people that the system takes advantage of, the people that can’t afford an attorney, or can’t afford bail or can’t afford bond and, you know, can’t afford to buy their way out of the situation,” he says. “Those are the people who need the most help.” Last year, as a 2L, he participated in Miami Law’s Innocence Clinic. And he found another way to give back, in the STREET Law Program. “It’s one of my favorite things about law school,” he says, “because so many kids, especially in Miami, come from an area where they don’t witness anyone do better than what they’re already doing. They’re stuck in a bubble, so they think that they’re stuck. I want to show them that they’re not.” n F OR MOR E


By Carlos Harrison


Photo by Jenny Abreu


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Sanchez juggles a full load of classes, works in Miami Law's Innocence Clinic, advocates against felony disenfranchisement, and teaches persuasive legal writing at the Dade Correctional Institution through HOPE. In between his Miami Law life, he can be found doing media interviews, documentary film shoots, and speaking engagements—most recently at Harvard Law School. Combating felony disenfranchisement is the issue very close to Sanchez’s heart. The native Miamian felt disproportional pressure last fall as Amendment 4

was on Florida’s November ballot. The successful passage restored voting eligibility to 1.4 million people with past felony convictions who have fully paid their debt to society. He is one of the disenfranchised. In 1999, Sanchez, then 16 years old, was sentenced to serve 30 years in prison for gang-related attempted murders. The road from prison to homelessness to college student to law student was rife with nearly overwhelming hardships, but his biggest battle may be yet to come. Sanchez, who is in the top 5% of his class, may face challenges to being admitted to the Florida Bar because aspiring lawyers with past convictions must have their civil rights fully restored to be considered for bar admission. “Ever since I earned my GED behind

bars, I realized that education was my sanctuary and gave me validation in a world where I was told that I was not worth anything,” Sanchez says. “I believe that if I work hard, get an education, and look for ways to help others, things will work out one way or another. That’s what keeps me pushing forward.” Sanchez has filled his path with strong grit and good works: he took four buses daily from the Salvation Army where he was living to his work and college classes in Orlando. At the University of Central Florida, he was named one of the nation's top moot court competitors while at the same time helping to collect over 300 books for the Orange County Jail. He graduated summa cum laude with a dual degree in political science and legal studies. Born in Miami's Little Havana

KELLIE PORTIE Brings Truly International Background to International Arbitration


orn in Havana, the International Arbitration J.D./LL.M. student learned English in Mozambique, moved back to Cuba, became a lawyer, worked with Dutch and Angolan companies, and, after competing in her home country’s first moot court, followed a newfound fascination with arbitration to Miami Law.

IT ALL STARTED WHEN KELLIE PORTIE WAS A LITTLE GIRL. HER PARENTS GAVE HER A UNICEF POSTER ABOUT CHILDREN’S RIGHTS. “It listed that children had the right to a certain amount of play and things like that,” she says. “I had a great childhood, but I would stubbornly assert my rights. That’s when they started saying I should be a lawyer.” When Portie was two years old, her father was named surgeon for the president of Mozambique. For the next five years, Africa became her home.

From Early African Childhood in Mozambique to Cuban Countryside “As a seven-year-old, it was hard to return to Cuba when your first memories of friends, happy moments, trees, and animals you love were in Mozambique,” she says. “I will never forget the feeling of watching for the first time my friend’s mom holding the baby on her back wrapped in a beautiful African scarf. Africa made me her daughter, and it took me a while to feel Cuban once I returned.” In Africa, Portie attended the Maputo International School where she learned English but her Spanish suffered. When the family returned to Havana, Portie had some catching up to do. As a third grader, she had to learn to write and read in Spanish as well as to learn all the lessons from the first and second grades. By fourth grade, she was on track with all her friends. Portie attended high school in the Cuban countryside, and she credits the experience with fostering her sense of autonomy. “I learned to be independent because I was not living with my parents in the city. I became more social because I had to quickly adjust to living with different types of people.” Law School and Public Defender in Cuba When she finished, she took two admission exams to the University of Havana Law School. “My first choice was law school, she says. “Law school just seemed to be the right path,” she says. ““I think I found myself there. I found the creative side of me I never knew I had before.” Five years later, she graduated summa cum laude from the University of Havana School of Law. Portie chose Organizacion Nacional de Bufetes Colectivos because she wanted to be a litigator. As a public defender, she worked at Havana Provincial Court. “I learned to separate my prejudice about a topic because a person needed me as a lawyer and not as a judge.” She transferred to Cuban law firm Bufete E y 23 where she worked in civil, administrative, labor and family law cases at municipal courts. F OR MOR E


neighborhood, Sanchez’s mother struggled with drug addiction. He was raised by a father, an immigrant from Cuba who spoke little English and could barely read or write, who emphasized education, a lesson that Sanchez was loathe to learn. Not yet a teenager, the small-framed Sanchez turned to a local gang, affording him a sense of protection and belonging. Over time, his rap sheet grew. "Like a lot of kids, peers have more sway than your parents," Sanchez says. "And I was in a neighborhood where it was so easy to make bad choices because it was all around you. Don't get me wrong. I had a choice, and I made the wrong one." He was tried as an adult on the attempted murder, an ill-advised decision that would yield surprisingly fortuitous results. The prison law library proved a respite for the inmate with a ninth-grade education; earning a GED (the diploma slipped unceremoniously through a slit in his cell in solitary) and spent hundreds of hours teaching himself enough law to successfully win appeal, reducing his sentence to 15 years, and release after 12 in custody. Free but homeless, Sanchez enrolled in Valencia Community College where he excelled and was selected for a Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Scholarship to transfer to the University of Central Florida. However, because of his probation, he was unable to accept it. A judge, hearing of his plight, terminated his supervision so he could use the scholarship; it now helps Sanchez attend Miami Law on a full ride. "In my head, I asked God for just one chance, and I made a commitment to myself that I would take whatever opportunity came my way and make the most of it," says Sanchez. "But one small window opened another, then another, then a door. I am going to keep working hard and running through every door I find." n


KELLIE PORTIE Brings Truly International Background to International Arbitration


got a job at one of the few international law firms in Cuba, steering her into the Kellie-changing world of international arbitration. And she went on to cocoach two moot court teams from her law school. Coming to Miami for Her LL.M. Two years later, Francisco Victoria Andreu, an international arbitration adviser, suggested she apply to the White & Case International Arbitration LL.M. at Miami Law. “He believed I had potential, and I believed I was up to this new challenge,” Portie says. “The White & Case International Arbitration

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Joins Team for Cuba’s First Arbitration Moot Court Competition She was offered a chance to participate in Cuba’s moot court competition, now named: International Arbitration Moot of La Habana. It was a first for Portie and for her country: applying international law to an international arbitration case in a competition. “The moot was the first time I learned about international arbitration, and I simply loved it,” she says. “I had to learn about this new type of proceeding, read common law, and international law, theory, and cases.” Her team placed second, and she

LL.M. program is well-known for its preeminent faculty.” Coming to Miami Law meant more than just changing countries. Cuba is a civil law jurisdiction rather than a common law; the legal systems are substantively different, and so is each system’s writing style. “It was a difficult adjustment. Practicing my writing, re-studying grammar, and reading Ernest Hemingway helped me to overcome my major issues,” she says. “Time by time, legal writing became less stressful.”

Joining Miami Law’s International Moot Court Program Despite the demands of law school, Portie found time for her other passion, moot court. In 2017, her team placed third and won an Honorable Mention for Best Claimant’s Brief in the MOOT Madrid. She also competed in the Foreign Direct Investment Moot at Suffolk University. After she returned from Madrid, she became the president of the International Moot Court Board at Miami Law in 2017-2018. “Madrid was a confirmation that I was on the right track,” Portie says. Over the summer, she worked as a law clerk at GST LLP, a boutique firm focused on international commercial and investment arbitrations, representing States, multi-national corporations, and select individuals. “GST has been an incredible experience to learn of the practice from different perspectives and topics, and a place where I am able to be creative beyond the basic arguments,” she says. Now she’s looking forward to graduation and a career. “As long as I’m working on international arbitration, it will be an amazing opportunity,” Portie says. “I will always be thankful to those who believed in me.” n


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By Richard Westlund


a child an opportunity to speak in a proceeding that will profoundly affect that young person’s life,” said Perlmutter, who is co-director of Miami Law’s Children & Youth Law Clinic, as well as professor of clinical legal education. “Our students and faculty have also been powerful catalysts for reform in the treatment of children, as well as being staunch advocates for their emotional, psychological, and physical needs.” In his 22 years on the faculty, Perlmutter has taught hundreds of students about the varied legal issues facing children, including foster care, juvenile justice, custody, immigration, disability, and health care issues. He’s also been recognized with a long string of awards for his dedicated service to some of the most vulnerable members of society, including the Hugh Glickstein Child Advocate of the Year Award by the Public Interest Law Section of The Florida Bar. “Back in the 1990s, there were only a handful of attorneys focusing on the special needs of children,” Perlmutter said. “Today, this is a growing, dynamic field of law. We have many students in our clinic who are very clear about making this a primary practice area in their careers. Other students see the intensive training we provide in the clinic as a way to hone their skills in a way that supports their ethical principles and professional goals.”

Growing Up on UM’s Campus Perlmutter grew up on the University of Miami campus, where his father, the late Arnold Perlmutter, Ph.D., was a professor in the Physics Department for more than 50 years. “I remember visiting his old office and his laboratory, and enjoying the peaceful campus scenery,” he said. But rather than follow his father into a scientific career, Perlmutter enrolled at Bennington College in Vermont, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in comparative literature in 1975. He then went on to do graduate work at Brandeis University, focusing on medieval French, Italian, and Spanish. “I have always loved literature, languages, and critical thinking,” he said. “But after two years in graduate school, I decided to reinvent myself.” Deciding to explore a career in law, Perlmutter moved to Washington, D.C., and began working as a paralegal at a major K Street law firm. “It was a great experience because I would work on large global litigation and transactional matters,” he said. “The firm also had a strong commitment to pro bono work, which resonated with me, and I was fortunate to assist several partners on a case being prepared for briefing and argument before the U.S. Supreme Court." After Study of Medieval Languages, Law School Calls In 1980, Perlmutter returned home and earned his J.D. at Miami Law in 1983. His first job after law school was with Lutheran Immigrant and Refugee Service, where he represented Haitians who had come to Miami seeking asylum. He gained trial experience by litigating hundreds of asylum cases, mostly unsuccessfully. He was also able to collaborate and co-counsel with

experienced attorneys in the private sector in federal class-action litigation, expanding his knowledge of courtroom procedures and strategies. Drawing on his language skills, Perlmutter studied Creole to interact more effectively with his Haitian clients. In the process, he developed a lifelong appreciation for Haitian culture and art. “We need to remember that the law is not just an isolated artifact, but deeply connected to culture and society,” he said. “As attorneys, our legal work should be placed in a larger frame of reference against the backdrop of history and culture.” After several years with the nonprofit refugee agency, Perlmutter entered private practice, handling immigration, family, real estate, and corporate matters for a small Miami firm. But his heart remained in legal services, and in 1987 he was offered an opportunity to launch an immigration project for Legal Services of Greater Miami. “We had gotten a small grant from The Florida Bar Foundation, and President Ronald Reagan had just signed the Simpson-Mazzoli Act, granting amnesty to certain undocumented aliens and farm workers,” Perlmutter recalled. “I was thrilled to create such an important project from the ground up.” Reflecting on his work on behalf of immigrant children, Perlmutter said one of the most valuable services a lawyer can provide is helping these young people articulate their fear of persecution in their homeland. “We had to turn their experiences into a narrative to persuade a judge in their favor,” he said. “That meant spending a lot of time listening to children describe what it was like in F OR MOR E





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Moving into Children’s Law After serving as an advocate for young immigrants, it was a natural step for Perlmutter to broaden his practice into children’s law. In 1988, legal services attorneys Christina A. Zawisza, now a retired law professor at the University of Memphis, and John M. Ratliff, a retired professor at Nova Southeastern University, asked Perlmutter to join Children First (now Florida’s Children First), an innovative statewide law reform project to enhance children’s legal rights. “Our goal was to provide children with access to lawyers in non-criminal cases, such as abuse and neglect,” Perlmutter said. “Thirty years later, I’m still doing that work.” Meanwhile, Perlmutter and his wife Pam Chamberlin, J.D. ’84, started a family, raising their son David, who is now training to be a therapist. In 1995, Miami Law Professor Robert Rosen mentioned that the law school was establishing a child advocacy clinic and suggested that Perlmutter apply for the position of director. The Children & Youth Law Clinic opened its doors in January 1996, the first of the school’s ten law clinics. “I really enjoy teaching students in a clinic setting,” Perlmutter said. “It’s great to help our students build advocacy skills and to influence their professional identities as future lawyers.” Through the years, Perlmutter has been in the forefront of the state’s evolving children’s rights movement,

Photo by Joshua Prezant

their homeland in order to seek relief based on a parent’s claim or their claim for asylum. The best lawyers will tell you that advocacy is all about storytelling. That’s certainly the case in the field of immigration law.”

"Our goal was to provide children with access to lawyers…" urging reforms in how children are treated in the courts as well as improvements to the foster care system. For example, Perlmutter and the late UM Professor Bruce Winick, along with Miami Law students, advocated in the early 2000s to abolish the widespread practice of shackling children in the courtroom if they were accused of a crime. ”We strongly believed this pernicious practice violated the due process principles of the U.S. Constitution,” Perlmutter said. “We filed friend of the court briefs in the federal

district and state appellate courts, and one of our students argued before the Florida Supreme Court.” Ultimately, the court agreed, and promulgated a rule that shackling would be allowed only if there was a need to restrain a violent or unruly child. Today, Florida’s children continue to need effective advocates, says Perlmutter. “As lawyers, we need to fight for our children, particularly young immigrants,” he said. “That means putting an end to cruel and inhumane practices, and ensuring their rights are respected in all our courts.” n


writing, she has taught classes on negotiating and drafting contracts, and litigation-based documents. She also teaches and conducts research on corporate compliance, governance, and social responsibility. Narine Weldon strives to convey the principles of effective communication to her students in both writing and skills courses. “You have to get your points across to a client who may be distracted by daily events or multitasking at the same time,” she said. “When outlining a case or preparing a brief, you also need to think about telling a story that captures the interest of your reader. When explaining your case to the client, a judge, or a jury, you need to avoid the legalese and tell the story clearly and persuasively,” she said.

Perspective, Clarity, and Purpose in Legal Writing Narine Weldon teaches contract drafting from a litigator’s perspective as

well as from a deal perspective. “When writing a contract, you always need to think about the choice of words, such as when to use ‘shall’ rather than ‘will’ or ‘must.’ A mistake in the phrasing could cost your client millions of dollars,” she said. Narine Weldon says clarity is fundamental to strong legal writing. “Write your memos and summaries in plain English,” she said. “Explain the concept so even a fourth-grader can understand what you’re saying without dumbing down your writing or making a CEO feel stupid. That’s not always an easy thing to do. But choosing clear words is particularly important in South Florida, where English is not the first language for many residents.” Like senior attorneys and business executives, law students need to know about their audience and consider the purpose of a written memo, brief, or contract before sitting down at the computer. For instance, advising a client about the potential benefits and risks of a contract proposal might require translating the key business points into legal terminology, according to Narine Weldon.

“The most gratifying part of my work is when my former students come back and tell me, ‘I use what you taught me every day in my practice.’”

Becoming an Attorney Narine Weldon was born in New York and grew up in Miami. She took acting lessons for years before graduating from Miami Killian High School. “I got



By Richard Westlund

Photo by Joshua Prezant

PROFESSOR MARCIA NARINE WELDON: Teaching Effective Legal Writing for Litigators and Transactional Lawyers


MI A MI LAW m a ga zi ne S PR IN G 20 19

PROFESSOR MARCIA NARINE WELDON: Teaching Effective Legal Writing for Litigators and Transactional Lawyers


an early start on public speaking and learning how to project my voice,” she said. “Those are great skills for litigators to cultivate.” Weldon enrolled at Columbia University in New York, studying political science and psychology, and earned her bachelor’s degree cum laude in 1988. As an undergraduate, she wrote a paper on “Civil Rights Law and Social Change” that led her professor, the late Jack Greenberg, to suggest a career in law. “When I graduated from Columbia, I had no idea what I would do next,” she said. “I thought about going to Wall Street, but had a difficult time with math and wasn’t particularly interested in business. I wound up taking the LSAT because it was the only test for graduate school that didn’t have math questions. Now it’s ironic that I focus on business law and encourage students to take accounting and tax courses.” Narine Weldon enrolled at Harvard Law School, earning her J.D., cum laude, in 1992. After graduating, she worked as a law clerk to former Justice Marie Garibaldi of the Supreme Court of New Jersey. She then joined Cleary, Gottlieb, Steen, and Hamilton in New York and began building a practice in commercial litigation, while handling pro bono cases outside of the firm involving abused and neglected children. “After working hard for three years, my son Hunter was born,” she said. “I realized that I wouldn’t see him grow up if I kept working those long hours in Manhattan.” So, Narine Weldon returned to Miami in 1996 and joined Morgan, Lewis and Bockius as a labor and employment attorney. From there, it was a natural

step for Narine Weldon to became an in-house attorney at Ryder System, where she moved up to become deputy general counsel, chief compliance officer, and chief privacy officer. In those roles, she oversaw the company’s global compliance, business ethics, privacy, government relations, environmental compliance, enterprise risk management, corporate responsibility, and labor and employment legal programs. In May 2011, Narine Weldon testified before the House Financial Services Committee in Congress on the unintended impact of DoddFrank Financial Reform on corporate compliance programs. A year later, the U.S. Secretary of Labor appointed her to the Whistleblower Protection Advisory Committee. She also served on the Miami-Dade Commission on Ethics and Public Trust from 20142017. “While at Ryder, I had the benefit of working with an executive coach,” Narine Weldon said. “That led me to consider academia as the next step in my career. I enjoyed training Ryder’s executives and managers about the law while researching legal issues and legislation that could affect our company. So, I decided to become a professor.”

A Teacher of Law After making her decision, Narine Weldon obtained a teaching fellowship at the University of Missouri at Kansas City, where she taught professional responsibility, employment law, and corporate governance, compliance, and social responsibility. She returned to Miami in 2013 and spent three years on the faculty at St. Thomas University’s School of Law, where

she taught civil procedure, business associations, legal issues for startups, and business and human rights before joining Miami Law. “During my years as a corporate lawyer, I felt a strong connection with the University of Miami,” she said. As a practitioner, Narine Weldon had joined LawWithoutWalls, a collaborative academic model that explores innovation in legal education and practice, and she has continued to mentor Miami Law students in the program. Since 2017, Narine Weldon has taught Miami Law courses on transactional drafting, legal writing, and corporate governance, compliance, and social responsibility. “I focus on practical applications of the law,” Narine Weldon said. “The most gratifying part of my work is when my former students come back and tell me, ‘I use what you taught me every day in my practice.’” Narine Weldon also brings her global business experience at Ryder, as well as her personal perspectives to Miami Law students. “I’ve been to 46 countries so far,” said Narine Weldon, who says travel and working with clients from other countries has helped her understand the varied cultures and backgrounds of Miami Law’s international students. “I like teaching business law to foreign lawyers, and there are LL.M. students in some of my classes. That adds richness to our discussions.“ She also believes in the importance of pro bono service, and has been a guardian ad litem for most of her career, adding, “It’s a pleasure to be part of a law school that values a personal commitment to public service to our community.” n


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or 122 years, Greater St. Paul A.M.E. Church has stood on the Jim Crow west side of Coconut Grove in Miami. On January 29, 2018, at the close of the board of directors’ meeting of the St. Paul Community Development Corporation, a nonprofit corporation affiliated with Greater St. Paul, a long-time board member approached me, UM Law Professor Charlton Copeland, and the young, newly appointed pastor, Reverend Nathanial Robinson III, and said, “You have brought the light to this community.” Earlier in the St. Paul meeting, Reverend Robinson pointed out the need to restructure the board and develop a strategic plan to better serve the church, its congregation, and its surrounding predominantly low-income community, and more forcefully address the intractable poverty of the West Grove as a whole. Part of that strategic plan, he noted, included the formation of a housing committee to be staffed by the “built environment” (housing and land use) project of UM Law’s Environmental Justice Clinic, a community-based law reform program working in partnership with 60 innercity black churches in South Florida at the intersection of civil rights, environmental health, and poverty law.1 To implement St. Paul’s strategic plan, Reverend Robinson charged the housing committee with the mandate to investigate, research, and remedy the widening patterns of tenant mass eviction, homeowner displacement, and resegregation in the West Grove and across the City of Miami. Later, standing outside the church on Thomas Avenue, I


2 3 4 5 6

By Anthony V. Alfieri Professor of Law & Dean's Distinguished Scholar; director, Center for Ethics & Public Service; founder, Historic Black Church Program & Environmental Justice Clinic

saw no evidence of light, only the familiar mix of dilapidated wood-frame Bahamian shotgun houses that had survived mid-century slum clearance campaigns and derelict postwar duplex rental housing developments, the “concrete monsters” of Miami’s Negro Removal era.2 Unlike the residents of nearby West Grove streets, many Thomas Avenue homeowners and tenants had survived the subprime lending and foreclosure crisis of the last decade. Now, besieged by “land grab” speculators and absentee landlords, both homeowners and tenants faced the escalating risk of “involuntary displacement—formal and informal evictions, landlord foreclosures, building condemnations.”3 At the same time, homeowners and tenants confronted the growing risk of economically forced out-migration to low-income, “black housing”4 districts in the outer-ring suburbs of southwest Miami-Dade County, state-sanctioned racial enclaves marked by segregated schools, low-wage labor markets, meager transportation infrastructure, public disinvestment, and gun violence and mass incarceration.5 Reverend Robinson’s summons to the Environmental Justice Clinic to become further engaged in the distressed neighborhoods of the West Grove and the City of Miami signals what the sociologist Matthew Desmond describes as our collective failure “to fully appreciate how deeply housing is implicated in the creation of poverty.”6 In explicating this failure, Desmond urges academics and advocates in the fields of civil rights and poverty law to move beyond the conventional ethnographic and sociological study of structural

For background on the Historic Black Church Program and its community-based anti-poverty, civil rights, and environmental justice campaigns, see Anthony V. Alfieri, Community Education and Access to Justice in a Time of Scarcity: Notes From the West Grove Trolley Garage Case, 2013 Wis. L. Rev. 121; Anthony V. Alfieri, Educating Lawyers for Community, 2012 Wis. L. Rev. 115; Anthony V. Alfieri, Rebellious Pedagogy and Practice, 23 Clinical L. Rev. 5 (2016); Anthony V. Alfieri, Paternalistic Interventions in Civil Rights and Poverty Law: A Case Study of Environmental Justice, 112 Mich. L. Rev. 1157 (2014) (book review); and Anthony V. Alfieri, Resistance Songs: Mobilizing the Law and Politics of Community, 93 Tex. L. Rev. 1459 (2015) (book review). N.D.B. Connolly, A World More Concrete: Real Estate and the Remaking of Jim Crow South Florida 144 (2014). Matthew Desmond, Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City 4-5, 305, 333 (2016). Marvin Dunn, Black Miami in the Twentieth Century 206 (1997). Anthony V. Alfieri, Inner-City Anti-Poverty Campaigns, 64 UCLA L. Rev. 1374, 1396 (2017) Desmond, supra note 4, at 5. F OR MOR E





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"…move beyond the conventional ethnographic and sociological study of structural forces (historical discrimination and industrial globalization) and individual deficiencies (the “culture of poverty”)… makes visible the often unseen socio-economic dynamics and processes of impoverishment…"


forces (historical discrimination and industrial globalization) and individual deficiencies (the “culture of poverty”). Doing so, he explains, makes visible the often unseen socioeconomic dynamics and processes of impoverishment, for example the process of eviction within the private rental housing markets of cities like San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York, Washington, D.C., and Miami.7 For academics committed to a new law and sociology of displacement and inequality, and for advocates in anti-poverty and civil rights organizations as well as university-housed legal clinics, Reverend Robinson, Desmond, and others sound a call to revisit the inner city as a site of cultural and sociolegal research. Echoed here, that call exhorts us to reimagine the inner city as a context for experiential learning and legalpolitical advocacy about concentrated poverty, neighborhood disadvantage, residential instability, and severe deprivation. Recent archival research, for example Richard Rothstein’s new book The Color of Law,8 answers that call. Rothstein’s book arrives at a moment of renewed academic interest in the inner city and resurgent activism in inner cities across the nation. For advocates waging rights-centered law reform campaigns, for academics studying the history of social justice movements, and for activists struggling to mobilize lowincome communities of color, the inner city continues to be a focal point of progressive legal-political work in the fields of both civil and criminal justice. Rothstein and others argue that inner-city and outerring suburban segregation in America directly result from deliberate, decades-long federal, state, and local government policies of discriminatory zoning, redlining, subsidies, and 7 8

taxation. Documenting explicit government policies of de jure segregation, they show that public officials at all levels tolerated, promoted, and enforced discriminatory practices of racial exclusion in residential neighborhoods. In this way, their work challenges claims that the exogenous “same race” activities, customs, and practices of private actors (landlords, real estate agents and developers, mortgage lenders, and homeowners) outside the public reach of government regulation produced the structural conditions of de facto segregation common to inner cities like Baltimore, Chicago, and Dallas, and outer-ring suburbs like Ferguson, Missouri. In the post-civil rights era, emerging urban research casts an important light on the past, present, and future work of inner-city black churches, university-housed legal clinics, and anti-poverty and civil rights organizations more generally. That light elucidates not only the socioeconomic conditions that cause and perpetuate poverty, but also the government policies that reinforce residential racial segregation. To enhance that light, we must engage the work of interdisciplinary scholars for a broader, integrated understanding of the current landscape of urban displacement, suburban impoverishment, and resegregation in American metropolitan areas. It is the collective light of UM Law’s clinics working hand-in-hand with faith-based and community-based organizations that illuminates alternative legal-political pathways for inner-city advocacy, policy, and research on poverty and race. n Thanks to Amelia Hope Grant-Alfieri and Reverend Nathaniel Robinson III of Greater St. Paul A.M.E. Church in Coconut Grove (Miami), Florida for their comments and support.

Professor Anthony Alfieri is a Dean’s Distinguished Scholar and founder and director of the Center for Ethics and Public Service. He is also the founder of the Historic Black Church Program and the Environmental Justice Clinic at Miami Law. Alfieri teaches civil procedure, ethics, public interest law and leadership, social enterprise, and professional liability, and lawyer malpractice. He has published more than 80 articles, essays, and editorials on ethics, civil rights, criminal justice, poverty law, professional liability, and the legal profession in leading journals and book anthologies.

Id. at 316-17. Richard Rothstein, The Color of Law: A Forgotten History of How Our Government Segregated America (2017).

U.S. TRADE POLICY By Kathleen Claussen Associate Professor of Law




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early all areas of the United States are directly affected by what some have called the “trade war”: the tit-for-tat tariffs on goods imposed by the U. S. and its trading partners in the last year. Include Miami among them. At the crossroads of both north-south and east-west trade lanes and with the highest numbers of international freight traffic of any city in the U.S., Miami feels the impact of developments in the global marketplace. The trade war is made manifest in a variety of ways, though the most notable weapon deployed in the various battles underway is the tariff. U.S. trading partners and free-trade advocates are paying close attention to the Trump Administration’s widespread use of tariffs to achieve its economic goals. The Administration has applied at least three types of tariffs on billions of dollars’ worth of goods. First, there are national security-premised duties and quotas levied on steel and aluminum imports not just from major U.S. foes, but also from U.S. allies. More such tariffs may be on the way as the Commerce Department undertakes further investigations into the national security threat posed by the import of additional products. Second, the U.S. has imposed tariffs on a long and growing list of products from China for what the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative views as China’s bad behavior, particularly toward U.S. intellectual property, posing a threat to U.S. commerce. Third, the U.S. has imposed emergency or “safeguard” duties on certain types of imported solar cells and washing machines on the basis that they are unexpectedly flooding the market to the detriment of U.S. business. While these many offensive moves could help a number of U.S. industries maintain their competitive edge, the immediate consequence is that most countries affected by these tariffs have responded in kind, leading the U.S., China, the European Union, Canada, Russia, Mexico, Turkey, India, Norway, and Switzerland each to begin dispute settlement proceedings at the World Trade Organization. At stake in those cases is whether any of the tariff moves is lawful under international law. Another three dozen WTO members have questioned the validity of the moves in debates on the WTO floor in Geneva. As for these cases, time may be on everyone’s side. WTO cases do not often move quickly. Under the dispute settlement rules, governments must first attempt to settle their disputes through diplomatic consultations. If these fail, the case could be reviewed by a three-member panel and the

losing side required to bring itself into compliance or face sanctions. A final outcome in any WTO case may be further complicated, however, by another battle taking place at the WTO. The U.S. has sought to block the appointment of new or returning members to the WTO’s appeals body. The U.S. argues that, in a number of past decisions, the appeals body has overstepped its authority in a way that endangers the right of each country to regulate its imports and exports. While some other countries share the U.S. view that the WTO appeals body has gone too far, reforming the system to the collective liking of all may be an insurmountable task. The confluence of a heavy caseload and insufficient numbers of decision-makers may paralyze the system designed for peaceful settlement of international trade disputes, driving countries to take measures further into their own hands. In the meantime, what can be done about the tariffs in the U.S.? After many months of the Trump Administration taking these actions against U.S. trading partners, Congress is starting to get into the game. The regulation of foreign commerce is Congress’s constitutional prerogative. Yet when it comes to tariff authority, Congress has regularly empowered the executive to manage foreign commerce without the checks that it has accorded itself in other areas. Now, Congress appears to be re-thinking its “helpless bystander” stance—but finding that tariff authority is far more difficult to take back than it is to give. In trying to rein in the Trump administration’s actions, Congress has a few legislative options, but it remains unclear if any of them will be enacted. Even if Congress were to advance any reforms over the finish line, it may very likely then need to overcome a veto from the White House. While these institutional issues occupy the better part of the international economic debate, the prospects for regional and bilateral free trade agreements also hang in the balance. As Canada’s top global economic partner, Florida was among the many states closely watching the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement, one of several negotiations undertaken by the Trump administration. Here again, Congress holds more power than may appear to be the case. In an article in the Yale Journal of International Law, I explained how the difficulty of Congress to accommodate change has led to path dependence in the rules and standards set out U.S. trade agreements for the last 20 years, particularly in certain issue areas such as labor and environment. Congress maintains the last word

The confluence of a heavy caseload and insufficient numbers of decision-makers may paralyze the system designed for peaceful settlement of international trade disputes, driving countries to take measures further into their own hands. according to a legislative process it devised called the Trade Promotion Authority. Unlike treaties, trade agreements are congressional-executive agreements subject to approval in both houses of Congress on a strict timeline. These domestic, regional, and international battles are unlikely to disappear in the near term. At the very least, they will continue to keep the trade bar busy. What remains to be seen is whether any of the institutions fighting it out will successfully dictate a productive way forward for U.S. trade policy—a way forward in the interests of workers, ranchers, and businesses in chief U.S. transnational business centers like Miami and major agricultural states like Florida. n Professor Kathleen Claussen’s primary scholarly interests include trade and investment law, dispute settlement and procedure, international and cyber security issues, and transnational business law. Immediately prior to joining the Miami Law faculty in 2017, Claussen was associate general counsel at the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative in the Executive Office of the President. There, she represented the U.S. in international trade dispute proceedings and served as a legal advisor for the U.S. in international trade negotiations. She is the author of more than twenty articles, chapters, and essays, and co-editor of and contributor to four books. She holds leadership positions within a number of international law and arbitration professional associations.


APRIL 4 – 5 Entertainment and Sports Law Conference Cutting-edge issues in the fields of entertainment and sports law.

APRIL 11 – 13 We Robot Interdisciplinary conference on the legal and policy questions relating to robots.

APRIL 26 Legal Malpractice & Professional Liability Roundtable Series Educates the legal community about professional responsibility and ethics, as well as legal malpractice issues that could arise.

JUNE 7 Bankruptcy Skills Workshop Consumer bankruptcy practice in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the S.D. Fla.

JUNE 26 – 28 Managing Compliance Across Borders Program For compliance, risk, and audit management counsel and executives from firms and corporations.

OCTOBER 3 – 4 44th Ralph E. Boyer Institute on Condo and Cluster Development The latest updates on condo and planned development law.


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NEW FACULTY MEMBERS Professor ANDREW ELMORE Examines the Intersection of Employment,

Labor, and Tort Law

By Catharine Skipp


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health workers. The native New Yorker soon realized that he could have a bigger hand in protecting the rights of lowwage workers as a section chief for the labor and civil rights bureaus of the New York State Attorney General. “It was a larger landscape, a broader canvas and it also showed me how the work of lawyers can shape society,” he says. “That led me to become interested in joining a national conversation about what workers’ rights mean in our contemporary workforce. Recent shifts in the demographics of workers and the structure of work—and recent social movements from Fight for $15 to #Me Too—pose urgent questions about how to effectively regulate the workplace.”


Move to a Familiar Setting as New Miami Law Faculty Member Elmore recently joined the faculty of Miami Law as an associate professor in his areas of expertise: torts, labor, and employment law. Elmore comes to Miami from New York University School of Law where he was an acting assistant professor. “I’ve always loved Miami,” Elmore says. “My father graduated from Coral Gables High School so even though I grew up in Dobbs Ferry, New York, we spent a lot of holidays here. What’s been so exciting in coming here is learning about Miami, a city that is quite international and cultured but also which has a very high poverty rate and income inequality, and thinking about how ideas about the workplace translate here.” Before 2015, he was a practitioner for over a decade, first as a Skadden Fellow at The Legal Aid Society in New

York City, where he helped create a city-wide employment law practice for low-wage and immigrant workers. As a section chief, he led and supervised high-volume and complex affirmative litigation and civil investigations, concentrating on wage-and-hour-law violations and employment discrimination in low-wage workplaces. During that time, he also taught the public enforcement of employment and civil rights laws as a lecturer for Columbia and Cardozo law schools.

Scholarship and Teaching Across Many Areas of Law “Teaching and research are a way to extend my values,” Elmore says. His teaching and research interests are at the intersection of employment and labor law, administrative law, and tort law. His scholarship has been published in The George Washington Law Review, Northeastern University Law Review, University of Pennsylvania Law Review Online, DePaul Law Review, Georgetown Immigration Law Journal, and UCLA Law Review. He is an affiliated scholar with the Migration Policy Institute, a nonpartisan immigration policy institute, and has written policy reports regarding state and local approaches to protect and raise labor standards for low-wage and immigrant workers for MPI and the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University School of Law. His report “Strategic Leverage: Use of State and Local Laws to Enforce Labor Standards in Immigrant-Dense Occupations,” with Muzaffar Chishti was published by Migration Policy Institute last March. The report focused on the systemic wage underpayment, payroll fraud, and misclassification of employees as independent contractors, allowing employers to avoid paying workers’ compensation, unemployment insurance, and payroll taxes. They found the labor standard violations more likely to be found in low-wage industries that employ significant numbers of immigrants. Elmore clerked for Judge Nicholas Garaufis of the U.S.



District Court for the Eastern District of New York. He graduated from UCLA School of Law with a concentration in public interest law and policy and graduated from Swarthmore College with a B.A. in history, where he met his wife, Alison Yager, at the French Accent Table, a spoof on the school’s academic interest tables. Yager is also an attorney, with a focus on public health. They have two children, Phoebe, 11, and Theo, 9, and a 7-yearold rescue mutt, Manny. Elmore and his family have taken quickly to Miami life. “The faculty is warm and welcoming, the institution is inclusive and the student body is a reflection of that,” he says. “And my children love being outdoors, making Miami a perfect match for us.” Currently teaching employment law, Elmore is also excited to contribute to the labor and employment curriculum, “and I continue to look for ways to involve myself in discussions about the rights of low-wage workers,” he said, “and to collaborate with others across the UM community.” n

Photo by Patricia Moya

“It was a larger landscape, a broader canvas and it also showed me how the work of lawyers can shape society.”


Forward Thinker Comes Full Circle—

MICHAEL CHIORAZZI Leads Law Library as New Director

By Catharine Skipp

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sporting a huge afro and had dreams of swimming with tropical fish as a marine biologist. Chiorazzi recently returned to the UM as associate dean for information services and Dean’s Distinguished Director of the Law Library at the School of Law. “I am excited to come back to Miami, where, as an undergraduate work-study student, I worked in the law library,” said Chiorazzi. “I feel like I’ve come full circle.” His hair is greyer now but no less wild than in the days when Henry King Stanford reigned as president of the University and the Hurricanes still played in the Orange Bowl. Then, as now, fellow New Jerseyan Bruce Springsteen was and is a rock legend. (He has seen “The Boss” in concert 28 times.) Though organic chemistry dashed his marine biology career, a degree in political science stood well in its stead at UM, and Chiorazzi went on to receive a J.D. at Gonzaga University in Spokane, Washington, and a Master in Law Librarianship from the University of Washington in Seattle. It would seem that the library and law school seed was planted at Miami Law, but what Chiorazzi liked most about his work-study job was that it allowed him to get paid to study in a

quiet air-conditioned environment. "The emphasis was definitely on study. My job was to check people's briefcases—there weren't backpacks or security then," he says. "I probably studied for 40 minutes out of every hour.” His post-undergraduate job was for the New Jersey Department of Consumer Affairs in the automobile division, something he still associates with The Angels’ song, “We Gotta Get Out of This Place.” Going west was intriguing and he soon found himself a 1L work-study in the Gonzaga law library. “Through the librarians there, I learned that there were people with law degrees working in law libraries,” he says. “And I liked the thought of working at a university. And UW has a law librarianship program and I was eligible for in-state tuition.” Path from Library Student Worker to Dean Prior to joining Miami Law, Chiorazzi was associate dean, professor of Information Resources and Library Science at the School of Information, and James & Beverly Rogers Professor of Law at the James E. Rogers College of Law at the University of Arizona. He began his career as a reference librarian and senior instructor in legal research at Duke University School of Law. Subsequently, he served as the deputy director of the Law Library and legal research instructor at the Boston College School of Law. Chiorazzi’s research interests

include legal history, issues in law librarianship, and the use of technology in the teaching of legal research. Since 1999, he has served as the editor of Legal Reference Services Quarterly. Most significantly, he was awarded the 2007 American Association of Law Libraries’ Joseph L. Andrews Bibliographic Award (with Marguerite Most), which recognizes important contributions to legal bibliographical literature for their editing of the book “Pre-Statehood Legal Research: A Guide to the Fifty States, Including the District of Columbia and New York City.” In July 2012, Chiorazzi was inducted into the American Association of Law Libraries Hall of Fame, and received the AALL Distinguished Lecture Award, in 2013. He presented his paper, "Mentoring, Teaching

Bringing Expertise to Miami Law “Michael is widely regarded as one of the preeminent and farsighted law librarians in the country,” Patricia D. White, dean of the law school said. “He will be able to lead our library with creativity and distinction as it faces the

significant challenges and equally great opportunities of these times.” Chiorazzi was attracted to Miami Law. “Applying for the position at Miami seemed like a no brainer. I’ve come back to campus a number of times for Homecomings and reunions; I have a great affection for the university and Miami,” he says. “I have known Sally Wise for over 35 years and whenever we talked, she expressed her love of the law school and the respect and appreciation she had for her staff and librarians. It just seemed like the perfect fit at this point in my career. “And there is an opportunity to rethink parts of the law library physical plant to meet the challenges of the evolving digital legal information world and reimagine student work spaces and faculty support,” Chiorazzi says.

Music remains an abiding mainstay in Chiorazzi’s life and serves as the one motivator to get his workaholic wife, Vickie, away from her work as an attorney, who specializes in legal research and writing for other attorneys. They had already rocked 40 concerts this year before coming to Miami. “We will miss the music scene in Tucson, where I served on the Board of Directors of the non-profit music venue, the Rialto Theatre,” he says, against his office’s backdrop of autographed concert posters and musician bobble heads and action figures. "In Miami, we've seen Steve Miller at the Hard Rock and Sam Lewis/Donavon Frankenreiter at the Culture Room. And in February, we made my annual pilgrimage to Tampa for the Americana music cruise Cayamo,” he says. “And of course, we'll see the Rolling Stones in April.”n F OR MOR E


Photo by Patricia Moya

and Training the Next Generation of Law Librarians: Past and Present as Prologue to the Future" at the annual meeting of AALL, in Seattle, Washington. The paper was published in the Law Library Journal. As founder of the nationally renowned Law Library Fellows Program at the UA, he mentored many law school graduates into the law librarian profession throughout the country, including Nicholas Mignanelli, Miami Law’s librarian assistant professor and reference law librarian.


FACULTY RETIREMENTS From Foreign Officer to International Law Professor,

RICHARD WILLIAMSON’s Career Spans the Globe, Literally

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he had a fascinating path outside of the hallowed halls of academia. It began with a special summer honors program at the University of Southern California during his rising senior year in high school. The students could select one elective and young Williamson opted for Public Speaking, as he was already very active in high school debate tournaments. But the course he really liked best was the required one for everyone in the program, taught by Dr. Norman Fertig, a professor of International Relations. It awakened an interest in Williamson that would steer the course of the next five decades of his life. “What I found fascinating about international relations, and still do today, is the vital importance of the topic, and its enormous complexity, touching on military security, diplomacy, trade and investment, domestic and international law, comparative culture, comparative government, philosophy, and technological change,” Williamson says. Air Force Linguist, High School Teacher, and Foreign Service Officer Born in Buffalo, New York, the Williamsons lived in Wheaton, Illinois, Bloomington, Indiana, and Bowling Green, Ohio, before Los Angeles. The family moved as his college accounting professor father (and later dean of the graduate

Photo by Jenny Abreu

By Catharine Skipp

business school at the University of Southern California and then dean of the business school at Loyola Marymount University) pursued ever better opportunities. After high school, Williamson enlisted in the United States Air Force, where he was in intelligence and trained as a Russian linguist. The experience took him to Japan for two years, then he headed back to Los Angeles to USC, for a degree in political science with a concentration in international studies. After briefly teaching high school while waiting for his appointment to the Foreign Service, Williamson embarked on a 14-year turn through the world of foreign affairs. In the Foreign Service, he was first assigned for training in Washington, D.C. and then to Bonn, Germany, as the Third Secretary of Embassy. During a short stint covering for the ambassador’s staff assistant, (which he was promised would be exceedingly quiet as Germans vacation in August), he was required to wake Ambassador Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr. in the wee hours of the morning to inform him that the Soviet Union had led Warsaw Pact troops in an invasion of Czechoslovakia to crack down on reformist trends in Prague. The move earned him a choice slot at the Consulate General in Munich doing political and economic work before

Pivot to Law School and Legal Academia At 37, Williamson decided to go to law school (another Harvard law student in his section would find his way to Miami Law: Stephen Urice). “There were several reasons,” Williamson says. “I had thought about law as a career on many occasions. Because of the 1980 election, it was clear that arms control would be given very little priority in the new administration. Also, I was quite young to be holding the position I had, and was eager to try something different. So, it was a good time to make the change.” Upon completion, he spent the next four years at Cleary, Gottlieb, Steen & Hamilton, in Washington, D.C., in the environmental regulatory and litigation practice. There, his work had a strong emphasis on regulating toxic substances under the Clean Water Act; and on serving as pro bono counsel to environmental organizations fighting against ocean pollution and for marine mammal protection. Williamson then decided he would like to teach. “It was always on my mind, as the mixture of scholarship, classroom teaching and service provided a degree of autonomy and variety that few professions could match,” Williamson says.

He put in applications through the Association of American Law Schools and Miami came calling. “I very much liked the spirit of the faculty in the sense it was a school on the move,” he says. “They had someone here teaching environmental law who wanted to pursue teaching other subjects, and they already had a really strong reputation in international law, which they wanted to enhance. I had experience and expertise in both. “I think most especially I added to that strength by bringing the law of armed conflict, and arms control,” he says. While at Miami Law, Williamson used his international bona fides to establish liaisons to international universities. Initially, a short-term offering between Miami Law and Leipzig University is now in its 18th year and led to the law school’s establishment of 17 other semester-long exchange programs on four continents.

What I found fascinating about international relations, and still do today, is the vital importance of the topic, and its enormous complexity…

Williamson’s 30-year career at Miami Law is well known: associate dean of the law school; interim chair of the Department of International Studies in the College of Arts and Sciences; chair of the Faculty Senate from 2009 to 2014; faculty advisor to the School of Law’s Honor Council for more than 20 years; and the James W. McLamore Outstanding Service Award by the UM Faculty Senate, and an honorary doctorate from Leipzig. Williamson’s siblings all still live in California and both he and his wife are committed Westerners. The business climate in California is somewhat unforgiving for long practicing lawyers and certified public accountants (Pamela is a CPA) so they are exploring Placitas, New Mexico, where he is hoping to do “some mediation and arbitration, and pro bono environmental law.” “It’s an extreme outer suburb of Albuquerque,” he says. “It’s somewhat remote in that it is surrounded by Federal lands and two Indian Reservations but Santa Fe and Albuquerque are easily accessible. “I’ve had exceptionally good career luck,” Williamson said. “The opportunities I received have allowed me to be a teacher, a diplomat, a foreign policy analyst, a labor leader, an arms control official, and a practicing lawyer. In 30 years at the U, I have had many different experiences, which I will miss, but I’m hoping for new challenges in New Mexico.” n F OR MOR E


returning to Washington. As an international relations officer in the Office of Political-Military and NATO Affairs of the U.S. Department of State, Williamson proposed the reduction equation that was selected by NATO as the opening negotiating position in the Mutual and Balanced Force Reduction talks with the Warsaw Pact in Vienna. “I was a very junior officer, at the time,” Williamson says. “I had the very good fortune to come up with a formula where we, and the Soviets, would take nearly all of the reductions, and our respective allies hardly any. By doing it that way we had equal percentage reductions (favored by the State Department) that came down to equal force levels (favored by the NSC staff). In the end, the U.S. put three options before NATO, and our allies picked mine.” After two years as counselor and executive director of the American Foreign Service Association (the “union” of 11,000 Foreign Service personnel), he was detailed to the U.S. Arms Control and Disarmament Agency, where he ultimately rose to be chief of its ACDA’s Nuclear Affairs Division. During his six years working on nuclear nonproliferation, Williamson was given a meritorious honor award for “signal contributions to the U.S. nuclear non-proliferation policy, including his leadership in the improvement and implementation of nuclear export controls, his successful advocacy of the use of more proliferation-resistant fuels in research reactors, and the establishment and supervision of special expertise in his division covering countries of proliferation concern.”


JAMES NICKEL Retires from Miami Law


Photo by Joshua Prezant

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AT THE END OF MAY, 2018, JAMES NICKEL RETIRED FROM HIS POSITION AT UM AS PROFESSOR OF PHILOSOPHY AND LAW. At Miami Law Nickel taught courses on international human rights. In the Philosophy Department Nickel mainly taught philosophy of law. Nickel is the author of Making Sense of Human Rights (2nd ed. 2007) and many articles in philosophy and law. When asked how he envisioned retirement Nickel wrote, “There’s a nice word in Spanish and Portuguese, disfrutar. It means enjoy. But unlike enjoy, it uses the metaphor of harvesting fruit. The idea of a harvest is often applied to retirement, but it isn’t clear which fruit one should pick and devour. Time? Retirees often have too much of time on their hands, but I doubt this will be my problem as long as I’m healthy. Freedom from work? I rarely found my work burdensome, and I will definitely continue writing and lecturing. Freedom from having to be in the place where one worked? Freedom to devote more time to things other than work? These two definitely fit me. I’ll surely spend time on travel, painting (big, nonrepresentational canvases), boating, hiking, furniture making, and spending time with family and friends. Still, I’ll have to learn how to do retirement—and that will take a while. I’ll have to learn which of the available fruits are most worth harvesting. And learning that will require experience and self-reflection.” In the summer and fall of 2018 Nickel did a lot of traveling. Destinations included Colorado, California, New England, Europe, Mexico, and the Galapagos. Academic lectures are scheduled for Rome and Mexico City. n

Miami Law HEAR OUR FACULTY GIVE CONTEXT, RELEVANCE, AND SIGNIFICANCE TO THE NEWS OF THE DAY Children of the Caravans with Bernard Perlmutter, director of the Children and Youth Law Clinic

Explainer The Bernie Madoff of Silicon Valley with

The War on Hate Speech? with

Professor Mary Anne Franks, president of the Cyber Civil Rights Initiative



Dan Ravicher, director of the Startup Practicum

The Citizenship Question and the Census with Professor Kunal Parker


Available now wherever fine podcasts are found!

The UN Climate Change Report Explained with

Environmental Justice Clinic’s Natalie Barefoot

FACULTY PUBLICATIONS Selected list from November 1, 2017 – October 31, 2018

Abraham, David Circumcision: Immigration, Religion, History, and Science in the German and U.S. Republics, in Philosophie der Republik 289 (Pirmin StekelerWeithofer & Benno Zabel, eds. 2018). Einwanderung im Wohlfahrtsstaat: Die Solidarität und das Problem der Homogenität, 56 Der Staat 535 (2017). Circumcision: Immigration, Religion, History, and Constitutional Identity in Germany and the U.S., 18 German L.J. 1745 (2017).

Alfieri, Anthony V. Inner-City Anti-Poverty Campaigns, 64 UCLA L. Rev. 1374 (2017).

Bettinger-Lopez, Caroline S. The Long Arc of Human Rights: A Case for Optimism, Foreign Aff., May-Jun. 2018, at 186.

Bradley, Caroline M. European (Dis)union: From the 1992 Single Market to Brexit, 25 U. Miami Int’l & Comp. L. Rev. 1 (2018).

Claussen, Kathleen Separation of Trade Law Powers, 43 Yale J. Int’l L. 315 (2018). Dispute Settlement Under the Next Generation of Free Trade Agreements, 46 Ga J. Int’l & Comp. L. 661 (2018).

Stocktaking and Glimpsing at Trade Law’s Next Generation, 111 Am. Soc’y Int’l L. Proc. 92 (2018).

Franchise Regulation for the Fissured Economy, 86 Geo. Wash. L. Rev. 907 (2018).

Tipping Point Challenges in International Economic Disputes, 17 L. & Prac. Int’l Cts. & Tribunals 61 (2018).

Fenton, Zanita Being Exceptional, 75 Stud. L. Pol. & Soc’y 79 (2018).

The Next Generation of U.S.Africa Trade Instruments, 111 AJIL Unbound 384 (2017).

Corbin, Caroline M. Is There Any Silver Lining to Trinity Lutheran Church, Inc. v. Comer? 116 Mich. L. Rev. Online 137 (2018). Government Employee Religion, 49 Ariz. St. L.J. 1193 (2017). A Free Speech Tale of Two County Clerk Refusals, 78 Ohio St. L.J. 819 (2017). Terrorists are Always Muslim But Never White: At the Intersection of Critical Race Theory and Propaganda, 86 Fordham L. Rev. 455 (2017).

DeStefano, Michele Legal Upheaval: A Guide to Creativity, Collaboration, and Innovation in Law (2018).

Elmore, Andrew The Future of Fast Food Governance, 165 U. Penn. L. Rev. Online 165 (2017).

Franks, Mary Anne Injury Inequality, in Injury and Injustice: The Cultural Politics of Harm and Redress 231 (Anne Bloom, et al. eds. 2018). The Desert of the Unreal: Inequality in Virtual and Augmented Reality, 51 U.C. Davis L. Rev. 499 (2017). Justice Beyond Dispute, 131 Harv. L. Rev. 1374 (2018) (reviewing Ethan Katsh & Orna Rabinoich-Einy, Digital Justice: Technology and the Internet of Disputes (2017)).

Friedrich, Sandra International Commercial Arbitration Practice in the United States, in International Commercial Arbitration Practice: 21st Century Perspectives § 14.01 (Horacio A. Grigera Naón & Paul E. Mason eds., 2017) (with Richard L. Williamson, John H. Rooney & Judith A. Freedberg). Witnesses, Subpoenas, Documents and the Relationship between the FAA and State Law, in International Arbitration in the United States 317 (Laurence Shore, et al. eds. 2017) (with Claudia T. Salomon).

Graham, Michael H. Handbook of Illinois Evidence (10th ed. 2017).

Jacobowitz, Jan L. Happy Birthday Siri! Dialing in Legal Ethics for Artificial Intelligence, Smartphones, and Real Time Lawyers, 4 Tex. A & M J. Prop. L. 407 (2018) (with Justin Ortiz).

James, Osamudia R. Valuing Identity, 102 Minn. L. Rev. 127 (2017).

Hill, Frances R. Taxation of Exempt Organizations (Cum. Supps. 2018) (with Douglas Mancino).

Lave, Tamara R. Assessing the Real Risk of Sexually Violent Predators: Doctor Padilla’s Dangerous Data, 55 Am. Crim. L. Rev. 705 (2018) (with Franklin E. Zimring). A Critical Look at How Top Colleges and Universities Are Adjudicating Rape, 71 U. Miami L. Rev. 377 (2017).

Levi, Lili Real “Fake News” and Fake “Fake News”, 16 First Amend. L. Rev. 232 (2018). The New Separability, 20 Vand. J. Ent. & Tech. L. 709 (2018).

Sundby, Scott E. The Rugged Individual’s Guide to the Fourth Amendment: How the Court’s Idealized Citizen Shapes, Influences and Excludes the Exercise of Constitutional Rights, 65 UCLA L. Rev. 690 (2018).

Mignanelli, Nicholas The Runaway Judge: John Grisham’s Appearance in Judicial Opinions, 48 U. Mem. L. Rev. 731 (2018).

Valdes, Francisco From Law Reform to Lived Justice: Marriage Equality, Personal Praxis, and Queer Normativity in the United States, 26 Tul. J.L. & Sexuality 1 (2017).

Sawicki, Andres The Central Claiming Renaissance, 103 Cornell L. Rev. 645 (2018).

Verges, Teresa Evolution of the Arbitration Forum as a Response to Mandatory Arbitration, 18 Nev. L.J. 437 (2018).

Schimkat, Katherine R. Are Reinsurers Requesting 502(d) Orders? If Not, Should They Be?, Reinsurance & Arbitration Report (Online), May 22, 2018.

Sharpless, Rebecca A. Zone of Nondeference: Chevron and Deportation for a Crime, 9 Drexel L. Rev. 323 (2017).

Stotzky, Irwin P. Send Them Back (2018). Rights Without Remedies: Do We Have a Successful Remedy for Police Violations of the Fourth Amendment?, 33 Civil Rights Litigation and Attorney Fees Handbook 163 (2017).

Williamson Jr., Richard L. International Commercial Arbitration Practice in the United States, in International Commercial Arbitration Practice: 21st Century Perspectives § 14.01 (Horacio A. Grigera Naón & Paul E. Mason eds., 2017) (with John H. Rooney, Judith A. Freedberg & Sandra Friedrich). "We work hard to push on the frontiers of knowledge. In the past year, School of Law faculty have published articles spanning a broad range of areas— reaching from immigration to bankruptcy law, the First Amendment to the European Union, and identity to legal industry innovation. I couldn’t be prouder of all that we have accomplished, or more excited to see what the next year brings." —Andres Sawicki Former Acting Vice Dean and Professor of Law



Frohock, Christina M. Habeas Won and Lost: The Eleventh Circuit’s Narrow View of State Court Judgments, 72 U. Miami L. Rev. 1175 (2018).




W By Richard Westlund

hen Patricia “Trish” White became dean of the University of Miami School of Law in June 2009, she was faced with an unprecedented challenge. It was the height of the recession, and 843 new students had sent deposits for the incoming class—more than double the anticipated 400 enrollees. Fortunately, the new dean was able to come up with an effective solution that allowed Miami Law to deliver high-quality courses without overly straining the school’s resources. “The first thing I did was send a congratulatory letter to every student who sent a deposit,” White said. “I reminded them about the tight legal market, and suggested that they first do a year of public service, in which case we would accept them in 2010. That brought our enrollment down to 527 students, which we were able to manage by adding extra classrooms and instructors. I wound up teaching an introductory course that fall.” In the following years, White brought her innovative thinking, intellectual skills and personal compassion to bear on the evolving needs of Miami Law students, faculty and staff. She launched new programs like Legal Corps, which paid to place new graduates in not-for-profit and public sector organizations, and LawWithoutWalls, which links students and faculty from more than 30 academic institutions around the world to examine and develop new solutions to evolving issues in legal education and practice. Recognizing the community’s growing need for accessible legal services, White also guided the expansion of Miami Law’s clinics, externships and public interest programs, while supporting interdisciplinary learning throughout the J.D. and LL.M. curricula. “Trish is a visionary and innovative leader,” said Hilarie Bass, J.D. ’81, founder of the Bass Institute for Diversity and

Inclusion, former co-president of Greenberg Traurig, the 2017-18 president of the American Bar Association (ABA), and the chair-elect of the University of Miami Board of Trustees. “Deans throughout the country have looked to Trish for her wise counsel. At Miami Law, she has done a phenomenal job of bringing in new and exciting faculty, and launching innovative programs that will benefit the school for years to come.” Now, after a decade at the helm of Miami Law, White is looking forward to retiring from her administrative responsibilities in June, while continuing to teach on the faculty and to serve as chair of the ABA’s Commission on the Future of Legal Education, which aims to address new challenges facing the legal profession. “Ten years is about right,” said White in announcing her retirement as dean. “An institution is seldom best served by having the same dean for more than 10 years. Good institutions must avoid becoming complaisant and they benefit from the challenge of welcoming and confronting new energy.” “Miami Law is a different place than it was a decade ago. The School is on solid financial footing and is internationally recognized as a leader in innovative responses to a dramatically changing legal environment. Our faculty is intellectually vibrant and committed. We are consistently admitting a strong 1L class, and providing an unparalleled student support model and team,” she said.

In the Forefront Throughout an academic career that began in 1979 while still a practicing tax attorney, White has been in the forefront of legal education. At Miami Law, she has repeatedly been recognized for her innovative strategies and influential thinking. To take just one example, White was named one the most influential people in legal education in the United States by National Jurist magazine in each of the years the list was published. In 2012, she was named the top woman on that list. F OR MOR E





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There is no doubt that Trish is one of the most studentcentric deans in the country.


“Trish is one of the most creative people I’ve known in legal academics,” said Peter D. Lederer, an adjunct faculty member who has served on Miami Law’s Visiting Committee for nearly half a century and is one of the co-founders of the law school’s LawWithoutWalls program. He was also one of Baker McKenzie’s earliest partners, opening the global firm’s Zurich office in the 1960s and headed the New York City office for many years. “The law school has an extraordinary record of women law deans beginning with Minnette Massey in 1962 and Soia Mentschikoff in 1974, and Trish has continued that tradition,” Lederer added. “Along with running the school, she is highly curious about what can be done to make life better for our students. Her willingness to explore new ideas is one of her strengths.” White’s vision for Miami Law’s academic program has emphasized what she calls the “3 Is”—innovative, interdisciplinary and international. Today, Miami Law has 22 joint degree programs that take advantage of the university’s interdisciplinary resources. Students can take elective courses in fields like medicine, architecture and nursing. One example is a Saturday short course called “The Idea of the Hospital,” that brings graduate students from different schools together to work on collaborative projects. “We also pay close attention to innovations that affect the practice of law, such as artificial intelligence (AI), e-discovery processes and legal informatics,” White said. “We developed a BILT track within the J.D. program that covers the business of innovation, law and technology.” Drawing on her background as a tax lawyer, White has also helped Miami Law stay on the leading edge of the master of laws (LL.M.) field. “Our LL.M. programs have been significantly strengthened and enlarged under her leadership,” said Stephen Urice, professor of law and director, Arts Law Track—Graduate Program in Entertainment, Arts and Sports Law LL.M. “Our graduate programs, including our joint J.D.-LL.M. offerings, are raising the profile of Miami Law and attracting students with a wide range of interests.”

Transforming Student Services White transformed Miami Law’s student services, adding the unique Student Development Program, the AskUs Fellows initiative, the Mindfulness in Law Program, Academic Achievement Program and the Office of Professionalism to name a few. “There is no doubt that Trish is one of the most studentcentric deans in the country,” said Greg Levy, J.D. ’10, associate dean, Law Academic & Student Services and Strategic Initiatives and deputy director, Entertainment, Arts and Sports Law LL.M. “She has built a wrap-around model that will be part of her legacy here.” Levy says that White created a chart with students at the center and looked at the various health and wellbeing, academic and career support services for students from admission to graduation and beyond. Then, she brought together students, faculty and staff to look for ways to improve those offerings, while creating a lasting culture of diversity and inclusion. “It’s been fun working with Trish,” Levy added. “She is constantly trying to be a step ahead of other schools and leverage our assets in unique and different ways as the legal profession evolves at a rapid pace. She is brilliant in thinking about how we should train the lawyers of tomorrow, rather than today.” White has also been instrumental in fostering a collaborative spirit of teamwork that extends throughout Miami Law’s operations. “Dean White is both a visionary and a great humanitarian,” said Mercy Hernandez-Ojeda, manager, Copy Center. “She takes pride in supporting our staff, as well as the students, faculty and alumni. She takes time out of her day to come around to our various departments, listens to us, and says ‘thank you.’ It’s been a pleasure working for her.” Guiding the Operations White says serving as dean of a law school is a balancing act that requires a wide range of business, human relations and professional skills. “It’s a great job because it requires a broad understanding of education, being sociable, having solid intellectual values and understanding the work of the faculty,” she said. “It’s like being a lawyer for a complex, demanding client. My experience as a lawyer has been very helpful for me in my role as dean.” On the operational side, White has faced a constant series of financial, people and business decisions. “At Miami Law, we operate our own library, admissions, registrar

and career services units, IT, counseling, development, as well as communications and marketing programs, along with maintaining close ties with our alumni and the legal community,” she said. Mark Raymond, J.D. ’83, managing partner, Nelson Mullins Broad & Cassel, and president of the Miami Law Alumni Association, says White’s steadiness at the helm, deep intellect, and pragmatism have resulted in a stronger school of law. “Few recognize that, as a dean, she is the CEO of a multi-million dollar business,” Raymond said. “She is to be applauded for all of the wonderful things she has done for Miami Law, and her tenure has benefitted our alumni well.” While White was trained as a philosopher and is very comfortable discussing legal theory, she is also skilled in the practical side of running a law school. Urice recalls serving on a faculty budget committee with her several years ago when applications were declining. “I was able to watch Trish negotiate a budget for Miami Law that was enormously successful in continuing our position as a strong component of the university,” he said. White has also reached out to alumni and South Florida’s legal community to raise millions of dollars in scholarships for Miami Law students with limited financial means. “Scholarship funding will continue to be a priority, because the need keeps increasing,” she said. “Many well-qualified students would not be able to attend without financial support. Others graduate with large debts that can limit their career choices to high-paying jobs in the private sector, even if they are passionate about public interest work. I believe that our graduates who have benefited from their education at Miami Law should consider giving back to our school to give new students the same opportunity they enjoyed.” From a broader perspective, White adds that one of the biggest problems facing higher education is the lack of sustainable funding models, particularly for private institutions. “One of the answers to cost containment in education is sharing resources in a cost-effective way,” she said. “I am a big fan of Florida International University’s College

of Law. We needed a first-rate state institution in Miami, and FIU has developed a good program. I am a big believer in collaboration, but it can be hard for private and public institutions to team up due to different cost structures and revenue streams.” Reflecting on her operational skills as well as her visionary leadership, Jeffrey L. Duerk, Ph.D., executive vice president for academic affairs and provost, said, “As dean, Trish has deftly navigated the challenges facing law schools and higher education across the country. While her expertise is vast, throughout her career she has demonstrated a steadfast focus on four key areas: students, the transformation of legal education, the interdisciplinary role of law, and public service. These longstanding commitments are reflected in many of the innovative programs and accomplishments established during her time at our law school.” A Career in the Law White was born in Syracuse, N.Y. and grew up in a family that balanced encouraging her intellectual, social and recreational interests, including swimming, tennis and golf. “There was no pressure,” said Esty Collet, one of her oldest friends, in a 2009 article recounting White’s achievements at Arizona State University. “She is one of the most wellbalanced human beings I have met. She’s so authentic. I don’t think she’s that much different today than she was at 10 or 8. Her focus, wanting to excel, her love of people, and love of life—I’ve never seen her change those basic human characteristics.” Growing up in an academic family, White had no thought of pursuing a career in law. She enrolled at the University of Michigan and earned a bachelor’s degree in philosophy in 1971. “I have always enjoyed thinking about philosophy and normative issues and always expected to become an academic,” she said. In her senior year at Michigan, she married a fellow philosopher. “We decided that I would go to law school, in order to maximize our career opportunities. So, I went to both the law school and graduate school in philosophy at Michigan at the

…she has demonstrated a steadfast focus on four key areas: students, the transformation of legal education, the interdisciplinary role of law, and public service. F OR MOR E


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same time—there were no joint programs at that time so it meant doing two full-time programs simultaneously. Deciding to dedicate herself to law, White felt it was important to develop some practical experience before moving into the academic world. She began her legal practice in Washington, D.C., at Steptoe & Johnson and then moved to Caplin & Drysdale. Then, in 1978, she joined the faculty at Georgetown University Law, and began teaching students about tax law. “I became a law professor at the same time I was practicing law, and that turned out to be a great combination for me,” she said. During her career, White has worked in the areas of tax law, torts, bioethics, philosophy of law, and trusts and estates, and has published in prominent law and bioethics journals. She is an elected Fellow of the American College of Tax Counsel. In 1988, White began teaching at the University of Michigan. She also was of counsel to the Detroit firm Bodman, Longley & Dahling, and served for a year as tax advisor to the Economic Study Commission for Major League Baseball. In 1994, White joined the law faculty at the University of Utah, and was of counsel to Parsons, Behle & Latimer. After five years in Utah, she moved south to become dean of Arizona State University’s College of Law. As ASU’s law dean from 1999 to 2009, she overcome several challenges, and created new programs like an Indian Law clinic and a collaborative J.D.-M.D. program with the Mayo Clinic. In 2006, ASU President Michael Crow and White approached retired U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, and asked her to give her name to ASU’s law school, the first law school naming of a living person based on merit and the first law school naming after a woman. “Patricia White has my admiration and appreciation for the wonderful job she has done,” said O’Connor. “It’s hard to be a dean of a law school. You have to balance three major interests: students who need to be satisfied they are getting a first-rate education; the faculty who have very different interests; and the alumni who give their support. She has managed very well in all these areas.” When she moved from ASU’s Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law to Miami Law in 2009, White left a lasting imprint on her institution. As president Crow said at the time, “Dean White has built a law school with deep intellectual grounding in history, philosophy, science and public service. She brought us to the point where we can grow, evolve and prosper as a community of teachers and scholars.”

Adjusting to a Changing Market Through the past 10 years, White has guided Miami Law through the ups and downs of a changing national economy and legal market. During the so-called “Great Recession” of 2009-10, she launched the Legal Corps—a first-of-its-kind program that guaranteed Miami Law graduates a six-month position in any nonprofit or governmental agency in the country if they passed the bar. “We paid for those first six months, so those graduates were ‘free’ to the organizations,” White said. “They were thrilled with our offer and more than 900 organizations sought to hire our new graduates.” Meanwhile, the new Miami Law attorneys appreciated the opportunity to be gainfully employed at a time when the market was contracting. “Many of our students stayed with those organizations after the first six months, while others drew on their experience to become first in line for positions in the private sector,” White said. After funding the Legal Corps for three years, the market for law school graduates improved and White brought it to an end. “It was a great program that made a difference for many graduates and won a lot of national awards, but financially it was not sustainable,” White said. Since then, White has focused on finding the optimum level for student admissions, raising standards and reducing class size to about 250 graduates in 2018. Now, applications are rising again as more young adults look for careers in public service and enrollment is now stable at 330 to 350 students. “Working with Trish the last 10 years as the chairman of the Miami Law Visiting Committee has been an extreme pleasure,” said Wayne Chaplin, president and CEO of Southern Glazer’s Wine and Spirits, and a member of the University of Miami Board of Trustees. “Her insight in helping to put our law school on solid ground for the future has been truly rewarding. Her long-term vision to rebase the law school by creating a smaller student body and an improved and empowered faculty has left us in a place of strength for years to come. Thank you Trish for 10 great and rewarding years.” Selecting the Right Students With her focus on individuals, it’s not surprising that White has never been a fan of law school rankings as a yardstick for applicants. “Institutions vary in their strengths, their programs and their roles in the field,” she said. “As a result, you wind up with apples to oranges comparisons that sell

A Parental Perspective It’s not just students who appreciate White’s personal interest and concern for their welfare. Dr. Richard Axel, professor of neuroscience at Columbia University and a Nobel Prize laureate in medicine, felt an “immediate kinship with her thinking” when he met White at a parent’s reception following his son’s admission to Miami Law. “I liked her intellect and her recognition of the role that academic institutions play in today’s society,” Axel said. “Along with her scholarship and leadership, she has a deep concern for humanity. She knows that connecting people who are different from ourselves stimulates the imagination. When we can see the world through multiple eyes, we are much better able to integrate and master complex problems, and she has instituted that thinking at Miami Law.” That humanitarian perspective helped carry Jonathan Axel, J.D. ‘15, through the rigorous Miami Law academic experience, according to his father. “On the morning of his graduation, I asked Jon ‘Where is your robe?’ In the intensity of completing finals and studying for law boards, he had forgotten to get one. But after making a couple of calls Dean White and her assistant took the time to find him a robe and got it to him on a crazy morning. She is truly a great person at every level.” Serving the Public Interest Under White’s leadership, the number of clinics at Miami Law has more than tripled, bringing the total to 10. “I am a big fan of legal clinics,” she said. “They provide a great



magazines, but are not necessarily helpful to prospective students.” Miami Law student Alice Kerr credits White with opening the door to a future career in law. A U.S. Army veteran with a long career in IT, Kerr was the lead project manager for a university-wide technology upgrade. “The IT department was reorganizing,” she said. “My position was going away and I wanted to assure Dean White that the transition to a new manager would be seamless for the law school’s IT department. Without missing a beat, she asked about my future plans and asked if I had considered law school. As I recall, I laughed out loud. Then, our 30-minute scheduled meeting became a twohour exploration of careers, law, and the possibility of a new career in law.” Kerr applied and received an offer of acceptance for the class of 2020. “Dean White took a chance on this late-career changing, poor test-taking applicant. Throughout my first semester, she would find me in the library and ask about classes, whether the experience was positive or negative, and whether I had ideas for improvements or changes. I am now in my second semester of 2L year, still enjoying the journey.”



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training mechanism to learn lawyering skills, while providing important services to large numbers of people who otherwise wouldn’t have access to our legal system. They also help our students understand that the role of a lawyer is often to bring about social justice, as well as helping individuals with a particular problem.” White also believes that externships, voluntary summer projects—locally, national and internationally—contribute to a well-balanced student experience. “Every year our students and faculty contribute thousands of pro bono hours in service to others,” she said. Caroline Bettinger-López, professor of clinical legal education and Director, Human Rights Clinic, says she has received tremendous support from White. “When I was invited to join the faculty here in 2010, I looked at Dean White’s record of supporting clinical and public interest programs at ASU,” she said. “We talked about her vision for Miami Law, and she clearly walks the talk. She also served as mentor, helping me understand how to grow our clinical programs, and build their reputation locally, nationally and internationally.” Soon after her arrival, Bettinger-López became involved in the grave humanitarian crisis in Haiti following the devastating January 2010 earthquake. After initially halting immigrant deportations, the U.S. government announced that December it would resume sending Haitians back to their homeland. “Our students in our immigration and human rights clinics sprang into action,” she said. “We were able to get the federal government to apply a humanitarian balancing test to every Haitian national they were seeking to deport. I credit Trish for providing the time and support for us to engage in this project.” Miami Law’s clinics have continued to flourish under White, introducing leading-edge community lawyering services, including litigation and advocacy. “We have also launched several practicums under her leadership,” BettingerLópez said. “Their impact will continue to grow in the future.” Thinking About the Future Although White is stepping down as Miami Law dean, she will continue to chair the ABA’s Commission on the Future of Legal Education, which aims to identify and influence the dramatic changes expected in the legal profession over the next decade. Those changes include rapid advances in technology that are reshaping how attorneys and firms practice law and serve

their clients. “We need to train our students to be successful in a world that includes artificial intelligence, predictive analytics and other applications,” White said. Recognizing the importance of sophisticated technology in the design and provision of legal services, White brought MiamiLex to the school in a strategic alliance with UnitedLex, a global provider of legal support and technology services. Since 2014, MiamiLex has provided direct budget support to Miami Law and highly relevant training, including certification testing in e-discovery and litigation management, forensics evidence and analysis, and risk and cost forecasting. “MiamiLex allows us to expose our students and recent graduates to complex client challenges requiring expertise in state-of-the-art technology and process design,” White said. “It also provides a source of law school funding including scholarship money for our students.” Looking to the future, White said the ABA commission is focusing on three primary issues. “First of all, the skill sets that lawyers will need in the 21st century are different from the past. That means we should consider new ways to structure and deliver a law school education. Our traditional one-size-fits-all model may not always be the best way to help students develop those new skills.” A second issue under consideration is changing the current licensure model. “One option would be to design a limited legal licensure regime that would allow paraprofessionals to assist clients in designated ways,” White said. “It’s a licensing model used in the delivery of healthcare services.” Related to the licensing issue is access to justice—the ABA committee’s third priority. “Access to our court system is not just a problem for the poor,” she said. “Today, most Americans can’t afford a lawyer for anything but the most serious concerns because the costs are too high.” While financial matters are clearly a practical concern, White can also step back and take a philosophical view of this vital national initiative. “We have started with the foundation, such as the role of law in a democratic society and the role of law schools as stewards of those values. From that, we will be considering the best ways to achieve our agreed-upon goals. Our work is not designed to be directive, but to provide a guidepost for law schools in the next decade.” A Less Demanding Schedule White is looking forward to having a less demanding professional schedule. “The dean’s position is a 24/7 job, 12

months of the year,” she said. “You are always on call and always responsible. The average tenure of a law school dean is 3.5 years, so 20 years is a long run!” Her husband, James W. Nickel, emeritus professor of philosophy and law, agrees. “When Trish stops being dean, she will need surgery to remove her mobile device from her hand,” he said. “We were recently driving back from a grandparents’ trip to Orlando, and she was on her phone for more than three hours.” Altogether, White and Nickel have five children and five grandchildren. Olivia White, holds a Ph.D in physics, and is a partner at McKinsey and Company in San Francisco; Alex White, Ph.D. is an associate professor of economics at Tshinghua University in Beijing; Jennifer White Callaghan, J.D., is a lawyer in the Washington D.C. office of London-based Allen & Overy; Jonathan Nickel, M.D., is a physician in Saratoga Springs, NY; and Philip Nickel, Ph.D., is an associate professor of philosophy at TU Eindhoven in the Netherlands. “Jim and I very much look forward to having the chance to enjoy our new found flexibility,” White said. “These past 10 years have been extremely challenging ones for law schools. I am proud to say that together our law school community weathered the storm and have emerged stronger than ever.” Noting that Miami Law today is on solid financial footing, with an intellectually vibrant and committed faculty and a strong incoming student class, Provost Duerk thanked White for her decade as dean. As he said, “We are all deeply grateful to Trish for her dedicated service to our students, our law school, and our university.” n

RECOGNITION AND AWARDS Throughout her career, Dean Patricia D. White has won many awards, including the Judge Learned Hand Award for distinguished public service by the Arizona chapter of the American Jewish Committee. She was the first woman law school dean in Arizona and the longest serving one in the history of Arizona State University’s Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law. Since joining Miami Law, she has been recognized with the following honors:

¡¡ Named one the most influential people in legal education in the United States by National Jurist magazine in each of the years it published. In 2012, she was named the top woman on that list. ¡¡ Cited by University of Chicago Law Professor Brian Leiter as one of the country’s nine most transformative law deans in the first decade of the 21st century. ¡¡ Received the 2012 Equal Justice Leadership Award by Legal Services of Greater Miami. The award recognizes excellence in protecting the rights of South Florida’s most vulnerable individuals and families.

¡¡ In 2011, Miami Law was honored by the American Bar Association Law Student Division with the Judy M. Weightman Memorial Public Interest Award, in recognition of the HOPE Public Interest Resource Center.

¡¡ A special report in London-based Financial Times ranked Miami Law as one of the most innovative law schools in the world in 2015 and 2016. ¡¡ Billboard Magazine ranked Miami Law as a top school for music law in the U.S. in 2017. ¡¡ Under White’s leadership, Miami Law was recognized by PreLaw Magazine as one the “20 Most Innovative Law Schools” in 2017. ¡¡ Innovation 800, published in 2017 by Cambridge University, included Miami Law as a “Leader in Learning” and one of the most innovative law schools.

¡¡ The Legal Services Innovation Index ranked the University of Miami Law in the top four for law schools delivering innovation and technology programs in 2017. F OR MOR E

Photo by Joshua Prezant


In-House Clinics Give a Voice to the

Unheard By Carlos Harrison


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If Marvel Comics or Hollywood was doing the naming, they might be known as the “Social Justice League.”


Their clients would probably agree. They don’t wear capes, but to the people they represent, the students and attorneys in Miami Law’s legal clinic programs are heroes— defending vulnerable children and seniors, the poor, the needy, the wrongly accused. They step in where others won’t, asking for nothing in return but the chance to help. Their reward, as students, is an unparalleled real-world experience. “It very much is this scary but exciting, a little overwhelming, experience,” says Kamal Gray, a 3L in the Health Rights Clinic this past summer. “You realize what an impact you’re going to be having on this person’s life. And it’s a bit overwhelming, especially when you see how much suffering a lot of these people are going through and you realize that for some of them this may be the last chance that they have to get whatever benefit they need or whatever services they need. “And it just makes you very nervous when you realize that it’s up to you, essentially, to fix this.” Since the first one opened its doors in a cramped, off-campus office 22 years ago, the school’s clinic offerings have grown to 11 separate and widely diverse programs covering a range of areas

of practice and serving an equally broad spectrum of clients. The various programs now include the original one, the Children and Youth Law Clinic, plus a family of new ones: Bankruptcy Assistance, Environmental Justice, Federal Appellate, Health Rights, Human Rights, Immigration, Innocence, Investor Rights, Tenants’ Rights, and the newest, an innovative Startup Practicum aimed at helping fledgling companies get off the ground.

Striving Together for Social Justice

As different as their specialties and the people they serve are, the clinics share a common theme: social justice, built on a three-pronged philosophy of empowerment aimed at students, clients, and communities. They’ve stood up for seniors who’ve lost their life savings through broker misconduct, for residents subjected to toxic waste in Coconut Grove and Dunbar, Florida and won the right for more than 158,000 disabled Floridians to receive food assistance after Hurricane Irma. “All of our clinics are meeting a critical need in our community. There really are so few free lawyers in Miami and so many poor and marginalized communities needing legal services,”

says Kele Stewart, associate dean of Experiential Learning and co-director of the Children and Youth Law Clinic.

Asylum, Deportation— Immigration Clinic Steps In

That means giving a voice to those who otherwise wouldn’t have one. Students in the Immigration Clinic, for instance, step in to represent people facing deportation—in an immigration court, the Board of Immigration Appeals, or federal court. They fought for five years to win asylum for an environmental activist who fled his native Honduras after he was threatened and shot at by corrupt police with ties to the illegal logging industry. Just this last year, the clinic became lead counsel in two federal lawsuits, including a challenge to Miami-Dade’s anti-sanctuary city policies and a class action to halt the removal of 92 Somali men and women who were held in shackles for almost two days, including more than 20 hours aboard a failed deportation flight.

Human Rights from U.S. to U.N.

Similarly, the members of the Human Rights Clinic document and draw attention to human rights violations around the world, including within

Elevating Socially-Minded Entrepreneurs

Even the business-oriented Larry Hoffman/Greenberg Traurig Startup Practicum places emphasis on companies with a social entrepreneurship aspect to them, supporting the kind of corporate credo found at places such as TOMS shoes or Warby Parker or Ben & Jerry’s that use their for-profit enterprises for philanthropic ends. One of the practicum's clients, for example, hires autistic adults who might otherwise not be able to find work to make their macaroons, says the director, Daniel Ravicher. “There are a lot of clinics like mine that just do intellectual property or economic development, or

entrepreneurship,” he says. “I didn’t want to exclude anybody, so it’s kind of a broad umbrella. It allows students to come and do whatever they want to pursue.” That means students can get a hefty variety of experience, from organization financing and intellectual property to talent contracting, terms of service, and privacy policy, Ravicher says. “Anything that a startup may need.”

First In-House Clinic

That full-service mentality is part of the Miami Law clinic programs' DNA, beginning with its very first one. The Children and Youth Law Clinic started in January 1996, thanks to a determined 3L student named Carolyn Salisbury, a visionary dean, and a dedicated professor. Salisbury sought and got an Echoing Green fellowship for a project representing older foster youth. Miami Law’s dean at the time, Sam Thompson, seized the opportunity to launch the school’s first in-house legal clinic. He named Bernard Perlmutter its director, with Salisbury as associate director. They found their first client on a basketball court. Or, rather, he found them. Abandoned by his parents and

living on the streets, a homeless Haitian teenager who called himself Tyson came under the wing of a local attorney who coached players in a midnight basketball league. He introduced Tyson to the clinic. Several months, motions, and court appearances later, the first group of clinic students resolved the first part of Tyson’s needs. They got him into foster care. The next semester’s participants tackled the second part. They got him his green card. It made a difference. Tyson went on to college. He founded his own IT company and now, more than two decades since he stepped out of the shadows with the clinic’s help, runs a nonprofit he started, coaching kids’ basketball. “He is a success story,” says Perlmutter, “exactly as the law contemplated.” Since then, the CYLC has assisted better than 1,200 youths and affected the lives of countless thousands more by successfully challenging some of Florida’s juvenile-related laws and court practices. “Our clinic work is not just exposing our students to the impact of the law on our clients,” says Perlmutter, “but also changing the law, making the law more humane, more constitutionally welcoming, or sound.” The impact is not limited to one person. Or even to only Florida. Less than a decade after the clinic opened its doors, Perlmutter and clinic students went before the Florida Supreme Court to argue for the rights of children in the state’s juvenile justice system. They won. The court adopted a rule establishing due process protections for children in the custody of the state’s Department F OR MOR E


the United States, and advocate on behalf of victims in the areas of gender violence, racial justice, and immigrants’ rights. Their work took them to the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women in 2018, where they helped organize a consultation on the Right to Food and Nutrition for rural women. They also created the COURAGE in Policing Project at Miami Law to combat gender violence and help improve law enforcement efforts in response to domestic violence and sexual assault, with an emphasis on immigrant and disabled women, women of color, LGBTQI individuals, and underserved populations. They hosted a COURAGE community forum and film screening of the documentary Home Truth, about the clinic’s client, domestic violence survivor-turned activist Jessica Lenahan (the film premiered on PBS in October 2018).

“Our clinic work is not just exposing our students to the impact of the law on our clients,” says Perlmutter, “but also changing the law, making the law more humane, more constitutionally welcoming, or sound.”


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Students from the Health Rights Clinic with client


of Children & Families who are involuntarily committed to psychiatric facilities by that agency, including precommitment hearings and the right to counsel. Then, just four years later, in 2009, the clinic helped overturn what until then was the widespread practice of indiscriminately keeping juvenile offenders in shackles during court appearances. “It had a long and storied history, that practice,” Perlmutter says. “But we worked with the public defender’s office in Miami, and ultimately the Florida Supreme Court abolished the practice by creating a rule of court that would require an individualized finding by the juvenile court that a child needed to be restrained in the courtroom.” It changed the way cases were handled for kids in Florida to this day. And it is helping bring change in other states. Perlmutter says he recently got an email from a Miami Law graduate in Texas asking for guidance because that state is now considering a similar ban.

“So the alumni that we oftentimes interact with are our allies in a bigger cause,” says Perlmutter.

Questioning the Status Quo and Pushing for Policy Change

The rest of the clinics were born similarly when vision intersected with community need. “We all strive to teach our students that what you do in the law impacts people every day and for a long time afterwards,” says Innocence Clinic Director Craig Trocino. “It impacts people’s lives.” All the clinics have three components. There’s a classroom element that looks like any other law school class, where students learn the legal foundations of that area of practice. Unlike other classes, though, there’s also a skills component where students work with real-world clients with real-world legal issues. “A key part of our pedagogy is that students take the role as the lead attorney in their cases, with close supervision of course,” says Stewart.

“We’re not just giving them discrete pieces of the case, we’re telling them you are the lawyer.” Which means, for the students, stepping into the role of a primary tactician on a case for the very first time. It’s a new challenge and a new responsibility. “They give you a whole case and it’s your case,” says Elaine Westphal, a 2L who took part in the Innocence Clinic during the summer. “So, instead of being told, ‘This is the strategy you’re going to take,’ you get to look at everything and think about what you think the right move would be.” The third element shared by all the clinics, says Stewart, is a “social justice piece, about ethics, the role of lawyers in the legal system, and changing the system.” That sets Miami Law apart from many other institutions. While most, if not all, law schools offer students a chance to take part in clinics connected with the university or to get a similar experience with a local legal aid office, Miami’s clinics

How Representing Investors Differs from Externships and Internships

Even internships or externships cannot offer students the same kind of interaction with clients. “I had been working as an intern at law firms since I was 19,” says Ryan Augusta, a 3L who spent the summer in the Investor Rights Clinic, “and

this is by far the best experience I’ve gotten because it’s not just, ‘Okay, do this and get it back to me’—as in filling out forms or punching in someone’s name on an affidavit. It’s actually taking point on things which, as an associate out of law school, is something that I’d like to have experience with, so that when it does come time to actually represent a client that’s my client, I know what I’m doing.” The Investor Rights Clinic he took part in is the only securities arbitration clinic in the state that offers free assistance to small claim investors, a client base made up of mostly elderly people who have been victims of fraud or suffered losses because of broker misconduct. While the individual claims are too small for them to find private legal representation, they can amount to most or all of that person’s life savings. It adds up. The barely six-yearold clinic reached a milestone in 2018, surpassing the $1 million mark in client recoveries.

Overwhelming Debt— Clinic is a Lifeline

The Eleanor R. Cristol and Judge A. Jay Cristol Bankruptcy Pro Bono Assistance Clinic assists those at the other end of the financial spectrum—people overwhelmed by financial debt. Under the guidance of clinic director Patricia Redmond, J.D. ’79, a shareholder at Stearns Weaver Miller Weissler Alhadeff & Sitterson, P.A., and Allison Day, her co-professor, students have helped many debtors work through financial

problems and in some cases, file bankruptcy, discharge their debts, and attain a fresh start in their lives. Most importantly, students analyze and understand what caused the clients’ bankruptcy situations and advise them on what they should do to prevent similar situations from recurring in the future.

The Responsibility Can Be Intense

Compared to other law school classes, the clinic experience is, in many ways, like the difference between med school and a surgical residency. Including—to push the metaphor—running from operating room to operating room, coping with multiple patients simultaneously, and dealing with everything from bedside manner and pre-op visits with family and other caregivers to maintaining charts and prescribing the proper treatment. Madison Cherry, for example, took part in the Children and Youth Law Clinic during the summer. She shared responsibility for 38 cases, with matters ranging from immigration to dependency. Individual clients often face multiple issues, including some that have little or nothing to do with the law itself. “It becomes way more layered,” says Cherry. “You go from having to be more of like the therapists who are listening to their issues, to working on their immigration needs. Do they have any issues at school that need to be dealt with?” Plus, the volume of cases she was assigned to handle gave her F OR MOR E


stress the importance of questioning the ramifications of the legal status quo—and pushing for change, when needed. The result, says Teresa Verges, director of the Investor Rights Clinic, is a “transformation” in the way students approach the law. “From learning how to represent someone to learning how to apply the law in a real situation, then actually taking it that step to think: ‘Well, why is it this way and why should it be this way?’” she says. “When those opportunities open up they get a chance to actually take some of the things that they’ve been doing, some of the cases that they’ve been working on and use them as a sounding board to explain why we should support a change or why we should advocate for a different change.” That combination of instructional components and hands-on learning makes the clinics a unique part of a law school education, says Environmental Justice Clinic inaugural Mysun Foundation Fellow Daniela Tagtachian. “You don’t have all three in any other experience,” she says. “In law school classes you’re either covering theory or you’re covering how to be a good lawyer. You’re not necessarily covering how to be a good lawyer in the social justice context and helping a community with lawyering skills that you actually apply.”

“We all strive to teach our students that what you do in the law impacts people every day and for a long time afterwards…It impacts people’s lives.”


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“To me, it’s a humbling experience. And I think everyone in the clinics, even if they don’t wind up working in the public interest sector, will keep those experiences in mind.”


an invaluable insider’s view of the realities of a young public defender’s life—juggling a multitude of cases before different judges. From Day One. The rewards, though, are immense. And immediate. “Like when we’re working on an immigration case and dealing with naturalization and when the kid actually passes the interview, it feels really good,” she says. “It’s a nice little reminder of why you want to be a lawyer.” That, says the Innocence Clinic’s Trocino, is one aim of the clinics. It’s real life, in real time. With very real consequences. “Students are taking some of what they’ve learned and they’re learning some additional law with us in the clinic,” he says, “and they’re applying it to an actual human being whose life will be changed either for the better or for the worse based on the work you do.” In the Innocence Clinic that means getting the case of someone who has been wrongly convicted overturned. Their cases often prove that if the wheels of justice turn slowly, the wheels of injustice are slower still. One of their cases involves a man who remains behind bars 20 years after he was arrested for an International House of Pancakes robbery he says he didn’t commit. They are seeking DNA retesting they believe will clear a Lake Worth man behind bars since 2009, sentenced to life in prison for murdering an elderly woman. And, in September, nearly two years after they filed their motion

to vacate judgment and sentence, the clinic is scheduled to argue the innocence of a man in prison since 2014 on a 20-year armed robbery conviction, and to present evidence to exonerate him. Real stakes. Real lives. “If you want something to put the fear of God into you, walk into court knowing the guy sitting next to you is innocent,” says Trocino. “That’s the gravity that all the clinics want to present to the students, that this is not just a dry casebook of whether Mrs. Palsgraf fell or not.”

Clinic Experience Results in Lasting Effects

Not all the students who participate in clinics will go on to practice in that same area of law. In fact, says Trocino, most probably won’t. The experience, though, provides invaluable training nonetheless. “It’s not the most lucrative area of law to be in,” he says, “but the things that you learn in our clinics translate very, very well to almost every other area of law that you might want to practice, especially if it’s a litigation-oriented practice of law. You know: how to dissect the case, how to build it from the ground up, how to view the facts—even the bad ones—the way to construct your defense or your prosecution if it’s a civil thing.” Of course, representing clients with so much at stake also affects students on a fundamental level. Trocino proudly recalls how he emailed one of his former students, who had graduated, passed the Bar, and gone on to practice insurance

defense in Boca Raton, to tell him that a judge had finally ordered an evidentiary hearing on a motion for post-conviction relief the former student had worked on several years before. “He emailed back immediately,” Trocino says, “asking, ‘Please can I do the hearing with you?’ And I said, ‘Absolutely.’ So he flew up to Pensacola on his own dime because he was so invested in this case. This client made such an impact on him.” Others show the impact the experience had on them in even more direct ways, passing up careers in private practice to dedicate themselves to the kind of social justice work they did in the clinics. Stewart says several past members of the Tenants’ Rights Clinic took jobs at Legal Services of Greater Miami, Inc. after graduation, continuing to work side-by-side with their former professor, clinic director Jeff Hearne, the senior attorney at the South Florida non-profit. The Immigration Clinic, says associate director Romy Lerner, has sent alumni into every facet of the area of practice, “on every side. We have students in private immigration, nonprofits, working for the immigration court. There’s one that’s working for the Department of Homeland Security.” And still others, such as Ryan Foley, J.D. ’13, who headed the Veterans Rights Project within the Health Rights Clinic for six years, found a calling in the clinics’ work. “I’m kind of a unique case because I’m an alumnus of the clinic that I worked in,” he says. “I don’t expect everybody to want to do the same thing, but I just became so passionate about the work that I wanted to find a way to continue doing it. So both me and the other

two attorneys that I’ve worked with in the clinic were alumni of the Health Rights Clinic and wanted to continue to work with the veteran population.”

Empowering Communities

The clinics are for the students and for the clients, of course. But they also strive to effect lasting change in the communities they serve. “We’re also thinking about how we use this process to empower the community,” says Natalie Barefoot, associate director of the Environmental Justice Clinic. “What do we do to help make sure that they’re stronger after they’ve been through this process, so that down the line when things happen, they’re empowered and able to participate meaningfully in processes that they’ve been excluded from?” Her clinic is different from the others in that it primarily serves communities, as opposed to a specific individual. With a focus on low- and moderate-income neighborhoods, students direct their attention to

problems involving housing and transportation as well as pollution. Their cases have included a class action lawsuit seeking damages for residents of Coconut Grove Village West, a historically segregated area subjected to ash and toxic fumes from a City of Miami incinerator for more than four decades. The clinic’s efforts are not limited to South Florida. Students work with residents of a predominantly African-American neighborhood in Fort Myers, on Florida’s west coast, and local attorneys to address concerns about carcinogenic toxins caused by decades of dumping lime sludge from the city’s wastewater treatment plant. Their efforts lead to the filing of a class action lawsuit in March 2018, and to the formation of a neighborhood steering committee. The concept of community activism coupled with legal action is a large part of what attracted Jenny Ledig, J.D. ’18 to the EJC. “The Environmental Justice Clinic model appealed to me in terms of community organizing,” she says.

“And I’m using a variety of different statutory regimes, applying both federal and local level law to combat problems.” And it also appealed to something deeper, something beyond the application of specific laws, something about the reason that they exist—to provide justice for all. “I also wanted to have an opportunity to give back in a way that is utilizing my skills as a budding lawyer and what I’m learning in law school to try to help others,” Ledig says. “To me, it’s a humbling experience. And I think everyone in the clinics, even if they don’t wind up working in the public interest sector, will keep those experiences in mind.” n

To be continued… F OR MOR E


Kele Stewart and student Kacie Hillsman


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11th Circuit Chief JUDGE BERTILA SOTO, J.D. ’89: Teaching Litigation Skills at Alma Mater By Richard Westlund


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a girl growing up in Iowa, she would cheer for the Hurricanes’ football team, right along with the Miami Dolphins. “After the Dolphins won the Super Bowl in their perfect season, I went out on the streets banging pots and pans,” she says. “The neighbors didn’t understand it was a Cuban custom for celebrating big events.” In 2013, Soto made history as the first female chief judge of the Eleventh Judicial Circuit of Florida, which serves Miami-Dade County. She was also the first Hispanic and the first CubanAmerican in that role. Today, Soto administers the Eleventh Judicial Circuit of Florida as chief judge, overseeing 123 judges in one of the largest circuits in the country. “Our judges hear cases involving everything from oversized lobsters to the death penalty,” she said. “I am very proud of the work they do every day on behalf of our community.”


Passing Litigation Experience onto Miami Law Students Along with her work in the courts, Soto serves as an adjunct professor in Miami Law’s Litigation Skills Program under the direction of Laurence (Lonnie) Rose. “I think it’s great for today’s students to be taught by instructors who once sat in those same seats,” she said. “That helps us relate to our students on a personal level. While the legal problems are often the same from year to year, every time I

teach, the students come up with a new twist on the facts. As a result, I learn along with them.” Soto says the litigation skills course can be beneficial to all Miami Law students. “You can’t understand the essence of being a lawyer until you prepare for a trial,” she said. “When you prepare a contract, close on a real estate deal or prepare a marital settlement, you try to avoid future disputes. But if you haven’t been in court for trial, you might not understand the importance of the wording.” In litigation, every case is different, because the facts are specific to the matter, she said. “At the same time, every judge is different. I might see things one way while another judge might have a different perspective.” Soto encourages her students to dissect each case and discuss the pros and cons of both sides. That’s because students often get caught up in their role as advocates and might miss a weakness in their presentation. “Students also need to know about evidence, discovery, motions, and the rules of procedure,” she said. “Even though there are fewer jury trials today, there are plenty of bench trials, so they need to be able to strategize and understand the opposition before deciding whether to settle a case or take it to trial.” From Virginia to Iowa to Miami Soto was born in Virginia, where her father, Osvaldo Soto was a professor at Longwood College (now, Longwood University). He had been a lawyer in Cuba, before leaving Castro’s dictatorship. When Soto was several months

old, she moved to Ames, Iowa, with her parents and three brothers. She attended dozens of sporting events at Iowa State University, watching the Cyclones compete in football, track, baseball, and wrestling while maintaining a long-distance love for the ’Canes, nurtured by her grandmother Maria Theresa Soto in Miami. In the mid-1970s, the Sotos moved to Miami, as her father completed a two-year certification program at the University of Florida and passed The Florida Bar. Meanwhile, his daughter graduated from high school in Miami and earned her bachelor’s degree at Florida International University before enrolling at Miami Law. While a student at Miami Law, Soto joined the Hispanic Bar Association, the Hispanic Law Student Association, the Society of the Bar and Gavel, and the Honor Council, while excelling in the Trial Advocacy Program, now the Litigation Skills Program. “I always wanted to be a lawyer,” Soto said, adding that she admires her father, a Bay of Pigs veteran and founder of the Spanish American League Against Discrimination. “Our family has a great respect for the U.S. legal system,” she said. “We don’t take democracy and the rule of law for granted.” State Attorney and Private Practice Post Miami Law Soto had started clerking at her father’s law office at age 14. Initially, she expected to focus on business, real estate, and family law. But after serving as an intern in the State Attorney’s Office, she took a different path into litigation.

death penalty and juvenile criminal cases require more hearings prior to the trial and post-judgment,” she said. “Our probate cases also involve more discovery and evidentiary hearings.” Another challenge has been the circuit court’s transition from paper to a paperless system in civil cases. She said, “We have 34 Miami-Dade municipalities feeding their cases into one system. At the same time, some judges still prefer looking at paper rather than screens. Meanwhile, we still have paper documents in our criminal cases. As a result, we need the county and state to continue to invest in our technology platform.” However, Soto points out that many pro se litigants arguing cases

for themselves may not have access to computers or other technology devices. “We want to be sure we make access to the courts available to everyone,” she said. “So, we are looking at putting kiosks in our courts’ reception areas, as well as offering other tools like self-help pages on our website and offering podcasts on our different divisions.” Asked about her advice for today’s Miami Law students, Soto said she sees a legal education as a “great stepping stone” for a professional or business career. “You can go down many paths with a law degree,” she added. “But the most important thing is to follow your passion and choose a career that brings you meaning in your life.” n F OR MOR E


Serving on the Bench Soto decided to run for county court judge in 1996 at age 32. She campaigned throughout Miami-Dade County and won a clear victory. “I felt strongly that I could represent our community’s very diverse population,” she said. “As different as we are in terms of backgrounds, we share a common desire for a fair and effective legal system and access to the courts.” Governor Jeb Bush elevated Soto to the circuit bench in 2002, and she was reelected without opposition in 2004, 2010 and 2016. Since becoming chief judge in 2013, Soto has seen a general decline in the volume of the court’s civil and criminal cases although there has been an upturn since Hurricane Irma last fall. “Our judges today are busier than ever because our cases are becoming more complex,” she said. “For instance,

Photo by Jenny Abreu

She joined the office full-time in 1989 and became an assistant state attorney, trying hundreds of cases as a prosecutor over the next three years. “Litigation requires you to develop a set of invaluable legal skills,” she said. “When you are in court, you have to be able to think on your feet, and respond effectively to what’s happening in the case.” Soto left the state attorney’s office in 1992 after the birth of her daughter Bertila “Bily” Fernandez, with her first husband, Judge Jose L. Fernandez, J.D. ’89. She practiced civil law with her father for four years. Meanwhile, her daughter began her journey to the law, earning her J.D. from Miami Law in 2016, and joining GrayRobinson as a litigation associate. Soto herself enjoys tailgating at ’Canes football games with her husband Gabriel Rodriguez, a Miami-Dade police officer, and their friends. “We have a great time together, and we are always cheering for our team,” she said.


CHIEF JUDGE LAUREL M. ISICOFF, J.D. ’82: A Leader in Bankruptcy By Richard Westlund


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opportunity to make a difference in the lives of other people,” she said. “It is very gratifying to see the successful resolution of a complex case involving multiple creditors and debtors.” Whether mentoring young lawyers or advising her clerks and interns, Isicoff makes it a point to discuss bankruptcy as a potential career path. “You can build so many different skills in this field,” she said. “You go to court and try cases. You also do a lot of negotiating in trying to put together a deal. Your cases might deal with federal or state law, and involve criminal matters as well. You never get bored.”


A Changing Field of Practice On February 13, 2006, Isicoff joined the bankruptcy court, and in 2016 she became the first woman chief judge of the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Florida. The court has seven sitting judges and one on recall who is available to litigants who can’t afford a mediator. “We have seen a dramatic drop in bankruptcy filings in the Southern District of Florida in recent years,” Isicoff said. Nationally, bankruptcy filings fell by 1.8 percent for the 12-month period ending March 31, 2018, continuing a trend since 2011. There were 779,828 filings, compared with 794,492 cases in the previous year, according to statistics released by the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts. But the Southern District is still

Following Her Grandfather’s Legal Path Isicoff grew up in Manhattan, where her mother Paula Wayne was a star on Broadway. Her father, Robert Myerson, was also in the theater business as a stage manager and director. But her grandfather, Joseph Myerson, was a greater influence on her future career. He was an in-house counsel for CIT Group, a financial services company, who handled several noteworthy cases in the 1930s, and ‘40s, including the recovery of liens on two buses by the Pierce Arrow Sales Corporation. He also argued a case before the U.S. Supreme Court on whether CIT’s lien had to be recognized on a vehicle that was seized for being used in bootlegging. “I worshiped my grandfather and decided I wanted to be a lawyer as well,” Isicoff said. At age 15, she moved with her family from New York to South Florida. Isicoff didn’t like the change of scene and graduated from high school a year early so she could return to the Northeast as a student at Barnard College in New York City. While on a summer vacation in Florida, she met her future husband, Steven Isicoff, a native Floridian who is now a Miami businessman. During her senior year, she attended the University of Miami as a visiting student and spent many hours typing up the School of Law’s Slip Sheet newsletter to help pay her expenses.

Miami to Manhattan to Miami After earning her bachelor’s degree, Isicoff took a year off before enrolling at New York University School of Law. “After my first year in law school, Steven asked me to marry him, so I moved back to Miami,” Isicoff said. “I was able to transfer to Miami Law and earn my degree.” In law school, Isicoff took part in a variety of activities, including running the mock trial competition in her third year. Through the years, Isicoff has stayed in close touch with Miami Law, along with other members of her family. Her brother-in-law Eric Isicoff, J.D. ’83, is a commercial litigator and a founding partner of Isicoff Ragatz, and her sister-in-law, Tammy Fox-Isicoff, J.D., ’83, is an immigration attorney and partner at Rifkin & Fox-Isicoff in Miami. Her nephew Jordan Isicoff, J.D. ’17, is an attorney with Hall, Lamb, Hall & Leto, P.A. Isicoff and her husband have two surviving children, Alison, a pediatric occupational therapist, and Daniel, who works in the family business. Their son Joseph was killed in a car accident 14 years ago, and his uncle Eric endowed a UM scholarship in his name. Clerking and Private Practice After Law School After graduating from law school in 1982, Isicoff clerked for the Honorable Daniel S. Pearson at the Florida Third District Court of Appeal for two years before entering private practice in the Miami office of Squire, Sanders & Dempsey, now known as Squire Patton Boggs. “At that time, there were only two associates in the firm’s small Miami office, including my friend Sandra Barker,” Isicoff said. When Barker left the firm, she handed Isicoff a bankruptcy case that was being managed by one of the firm’s partners in Cleveland. “Sandy told me that everyone wants to be a commercial

litigator, but focusing my practice on bankruptcy could take me a long way,” Isicoff said. “That was good advice, and helped me stay focused on this field.” After eight years with Squire Sanders, Isicoff joined Kozyak Tropin & Throckmorton, where she continued to develop her skills in commercial bankruptcy. Isicoff spent 14 years with KTT, developing a specialty in U.S. Securities and Exchange receiverships involving Ponzi schemes, such as the Premium Sales bankruptcy case in the 1990s. “We adopted some creative strategies to coordinate the distribution of funds to victims of this Ponzi scheme,” she said. Isicoff also handled a variety of foreclosures, workouts, including securitized loans for LNR Partners. She also served as local counsel for the creditor’s committee in the bankruptcy case of Polar Air and its affiliate, Atlas Air, negotiating with the company’s debtors. Other notable cases included working on the asset analysis and distribution proposal in the Mutual Benefits receivership, and the second Pan Am bankruptcy case in the early 2000s. Whether in private practice or on the bench, Isicoff is committed to service to others. She formerly served as president of the Bankruptcy Bar Association of the Southern District of Florida, and chair of the BBA’s Pro Bono Task Force. Currently, Isicoff is a member of the Pro Bono Committee of the American College of Bankruptcy, serves as judicial chair of the Pro Bono Committee of the Business Law Section of The Florida Bar, and is a member of The Florida Bar Standing Committee on Pro Bono. “It’s always been very important for me to find a way to help people and companies in financial distress,” she said. “By contributing their pro bono time and skills, South Florida’s attorneys can make a big difference in our community.” n F OR MOR E


above the national average of cases per judge, Isicoff added. In 2010, the court handled about 40,000 cases—almost 6,000 per judge—due to the impact of the nationwide recession, while the current caseload is about 4,000 per judge, she added. At the same time, South Florida has seen an increase in cases involving assignment for the benefit of creditors, which are handled in state courts and can be less expensive for small and mid-size businesses, Isicoff said.


MATTHEW E. KOHEN, J.D. ’14: Technology Attorney, and Blockchain and Digital Currency Expert By Richard Westlund


ne of the hottest topics in law, business and banking is blockchain—a highly secure tool for tracking confidential data like cryptocurrencies, real estate purchases, and supply chain transactions. AS A

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“Technology is my passion,” said Kohen, who is general counsel and blockchain evangelist at 8base in Coral Gables, and of counsel to Carlton Field’s Miami office. “I have been fascinated by blockchain for years and call it a legal platypus, because it is so hard to classify. Blockchain is actually a decentralized encrypted database or ledger that is very different from the traditional model.” In a typical financial transaction, both parties trust a bank to maintain accurate records of an account and transfer funds from a buyer to a seller. “Blockchain eliminates the middleman by distributing the ledger to all market participants,” Kohen said. “Using complex cryptography and mathematics, the blockchain requires a majority of market participants to agree on a transaction's validity before the ledger can be changed.” Benefits of blockchain include reduced market friction, lower transaction costs, and secure

collaboration on sensitive issues. For instance, blockchain can enable a large insurer to share some claims information across its network or to a consortium of supply chain companies. Kohen said the United Nations is now using blockchain to track refugees moving from country to country, and the highly secure protocol could be applied to voting in the U.S. and elsewhere. “There has been a lot of hype about blockchain, but relatively few cases where this technology has been put into use,” he said.

Political Science, Bitcoins, and the Law Kohen grew up in New Jersey and became a fan of the New York Giants and Yankees. He earned his bachelor’s degree at American University in Washington, D.C., majoring in political science with courses in communications, economics, pre-law, and government. As a college intern, he worked at Morgan Stanley, a New Jersey congressional office, and a Maryland law firm. “It was then I got my first taste of the legal field, and found I really liked the law,” he said. “My advice to today’s students is simple: Take advantage of every experience you can get, including volunteer work. It all comes together to make you a better attorney.” Meanwhile, Kohen became intrigued by Bitcoin, the first wellknown digital currency based on blockchain technology. “I had written a paper on how interstellar economies are portrayed incorrectly in science fiction novels,” he said. “Because data can’t travel faster than the speed of light, it would be impossible to

synchronize financial transactions and accounting ledgers on different planets. That got me thinking about different approaches to handling currency.”

Digital Currency Expert In 2011, Kohen started Bitcoin mining, the process by which transactions are verified and added to the public ledger, and later became involved with Litecoin and Ethereum, two other digital currencies. That same year, Kohen headed south to the University of Miami. “Enrolling at Miami Law was an easy decision, once I had toured the campus and saw the high caliber of the faculty,” he said. At Miami Law, Kohen was named a Dean’s Fellow and served as senior articles editor of the University of Miami Law Review. He also started blogging and tweeting about Bitcoin. “Because of the mathematics underpinning the blockchain, the Bitcoin network is the most secure network in history,” Kohen said. “The currency cannot be counterfeited, and the protocol itself has never been hacked. However, hackers have been able to penetrate the money service companies that exchange Bitcoin for other currencies resulting in millions of dollars in losses.” Working with Technology Clients After earning his law degree, Kohen was recruited by Jorden Burt the summer before it merged with Carlton Fields. “I had been handling some telecom litigation, and the firm wanted an attorney who could articulate technology issues to their clients,” he said.

At Carlton Fields, Kohen continued working with telecom clients, while developing a practice in the technology startup sector. That included advising on transactions, securities, and finance, as well as litigation. “The firm encouraged young associates like me to find clients and build a book of business.” In 2017, Kohen became co-chair of Carlton Field’s blockchain technology

and digital currency practice group. “We would edge out white-shoe law firms because we could speak the same language as our technology clients,” he said. One of Kohen’s South Florida clients was 8base, a technology company with a suite of tools called Serverless Chassis to help developers build business software for their

Addressing Regulations and Laws for New Currencies A sports enthusiast, entrepreneur, and investor, Kohen is also a frequent speaker and panelist at blockchain conferences on issues related to protocol developer liability, the application of existing regulatory regimes, and the impact of federal and state laws and regulations. He wrote the first-ever treatise analyzing the laws of all 50 states insofar as they pertain to digital assets. “The legal world is still grappling with how issues like liability and fiduciary responsibility come into play with blockchain and digital currencies,” Kohen said. Although financial regulators are concerned about how digital currencies could be used for money laundering or other illegal purposes, Kohen said the blockchain ledger, at least with respect to Bitcoin, makes it possible to track any illicit activity. Looking ahead, Kohen said he believes blockchain will become an increasingly important component of the world’s technology infrastructure, staying in the background like the Internet. “I’m excited about the future,” he added. “I’m always learning new things, and my legal work never feels like it’s just a job.” n F OR MOR E


Photo by Jenny Abreu

clients. In February, Kohen joined 8base full time, bringing his blockchain and legal experience to the fast-growing company, which also has an office in St. Petersburg, Russia. “One of my roles is to assist 8base in building a platform that will support easy access to blockchain,” Kohen said. “We enable independent developers to do their gigs more efficiently, offer their clients better price points, and potentially generate ongoing revenue. Our goal is to allow them to challenge the SaaS (software as a service) community and go head to head with big companies like SalesForce.”


MONICA AQUINO-THIEMAN, J.D. ’99, & KEN KANZAWA, J.D. ’15: Protecting NASA’s Interests on the Ground By Richard Westlund

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and humbled to be an attorney for NASA, which has an amazing history of exploring space, extending the frontiers of science, and inspiring our next generation to invent and contribute to a mission with limitless possibilities,” she said. As part of senior leadership of NASA, a federal agency with more than 17,000 employees, Aquino-Thieman is the director of the NASA Office of the General Counsel procurement fraud program. She also serves as counsel to the NASA Suspending and Debarring Official. As director, she supports NASA’s scientific and engineering programs by protecting NASA’s interests through combating fraud, ensuring NASA works with only responsible contractors and grantees, and ensuring the continuance of NASA’s mission-critical operations during complex Department of Justice and Inspector General investigations. Her program advances the agency’s core values of safety, integrity, teamwork, and excellence. She has been part of the program since its inception and was one of the three founding NASA attorneys who developed the program agencywide. Creating the Blueprint to Fight Fraud “Our team in the Office of the

General Counsel promotes integrity, transparency, and accountability in the acquisition process,” said AquinoThieman. “Some of the smartest people in the world work for NASA, including our contractors. Unfortunately, that also means that those who commit fraud against NASA are quite sophisticated and often use complex schemes. To understand the fraud also means to understand and appreciate the complicated and intricate projects and missions that NASA undertakes.” In her tenure at NASA, AquinoThieman and the agency-wide 14-member team have obtained more than $360 million in government recoveries and taken over 270 suspension/debarment-related actions. Other federal agencies have used the NASA program as a model, and her guidance as vice-chair of the Interagency Suspension and Debarment Committee, a committee established by Executive Order of the President, has helped to shape legal policy government-wide. Her leadership as chair of NASA’s Counterfeit Parts Working Group also helped to result in legislation enacted in 2017 to protect NASA’s government supply chain from counterfeit parts. “Most people think of fraud as only the theft of money,” she said. “But fraud also impacts safety and can result in mission failure. We take stringent action to prevent counterfeit parts from entering our supply chain, which could adversely impact the safety of our astronauts, satellites, launch and space vehicles, or our ability for deep space exploration.”

High School Teen Court Experience Leads to Law School Aquino-Thieman grew up in Lake Wales, Florida, and enjoyed her classes in science and math as a student. Her family included doctors and other health professionals, and she was prepared to follow in their footsteps. But in high school, she was selected to work as a prosecutor and defense attorney at Polk County Teen Court, where teenage offenders accused of misdemeanors could be tried by their peers as an alternative to the traditional juvenile justice system. “I tried more than 80 cases ranging from battery to shoplifting, prepared opening and closing statements and conducted cross-examinations,” she said. “I really enjoyed the litigation process and decided to consider law as a career. My mother played the pivotal and critical role in developing my public speaking skills, and my father taught me the tenacity that served as the foundation for my goals. My family members were fine with my choice to be an attorney—as long as I promised not to get into medical malpractice.” While in high school, her cousin, Jennifer Dagdag Bork, B.A. ’95, J.D. ’98, encouraged Aquino-Thieman to consider the University of Miami. “She convinced me to apply, and I was able to get a good scholarship,” she said. “It turned out to be a great decision, and to this day, I bleed orange and green!” Undergrad Leader at UM, Reid Scholar at Miami Law At UM, Aquino-Thieman began taking advantage of the many academic and non-academic opportunities offered

to undergraduates. In her junior year, she was elected student government president—the first woman in 17 years and the first Asian/Pacific Islander to hold the office. In that role, she advocated for student concerns including diversity, safety, and quality of life. She also pursued her interest in law, serving as associate chief justice in student government and judicial chair of her sorority. Aquino-Thieman graduated with a bachelor’s degree magna cum laude and a double major in English and political science. She was named to the Iron Arrow honor society, Phi Beta Kappa, and received other academic awards. At Miami Law, Aquino-Thieman continued to build her leadership skills. She received the Harvey T. Reid Scholarship; was named Outstanding Moot Court Board Member of the Year; and was Miami Law’s student representative to the UM Board of

Trustees. In 2018, she was also honored with a Miami Law alumni achievement award. Aquino-Thieman also took advantage of a semester internship program to serve as judicial intern to the United States Magistrate Judge William C. Turnoff, where she drafted reports and recommendations for rulings on motions. “At Miami Law, the theoretical courses and the practical experiences came together to make me a good lawyer,” said Aquino-Thieman. “I loved the litigation skills program and learned so much from those classes. Being videotaped in a courtroom setting was an excruciating experience, but it helped me learn about preparing my arguments, and I am a more effective litigator and negotiator because of that course.” During her first year of law school, Aquino-Thieman applied to be an honors

Moving to D.C. Aquino-Thieman had planned to practice in Florida but decided to return to the Washington area to launch her career. “I wanted to be a civil servant, but my mentors at the Pentagon said it would be good for me to get private sector experience first to gain a broader perspective before going back to the government,” said Aquino-Thieman, who joined McKenna & Cuneo, LLP as a trial and litigation associate. She later moved to Mayer, Brown, Rowe & Maw LLP, where she specialized in both litigation and government contracts. Along with her legal career, she met Peter Thieman, now a corporate energy partner at Dentons law firm. They married and now have three energetic boys. “My kids think NASA is very cool, and my 12-year-old had a great time this summer at Space Camp,” she said. “While I do enjoy my job, my main joy in life is spending time with my family.” In 2006, Aquino-Thieman says one of her Miami Law friends asked her to look at legal jobs in the D.C. area. “I wasn’t looking for myself, but when I saw NASA was creating its procurement fraud program, I sought the opportunity,” she said. “My friend wanted a position in employment law so she was not interested, but it was ideal for me. I wanted to have a chance to help shape a new federal program from the ground up.” Aquino-Thieman found that her early interest in science and F OR MOR E


Photo by Marvell Gay

legal intern for the U.S. Department of Defense Office of General Counsel at the Pentagon, a position she found in the career planning and placement office. “I had only 24 hours to submit my application, but made the deadline and got the position as one of a handful of interns from throughout the country,” she said. “That internship changed the course of my legal career.”


engineering was a big plus in her legal roles at NASA because of the technical details involved in NASA’s programs. Her experiences at Miami Law also prepared her to be a contributor to NASA’s senior leadership team. “My advice for today’s students is to challenge yourself and try new things,” she said. “Remember, it’s never too soon to start thinking about what you might want in your future.” n


eil Armstrong’s first steps on the moon, the U.S. space shuttle program, and the Mars Curiosity rover are among the notable accomplishments of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. While the federal agency is best known for exploring the solar system and capturing images of distant stars, planets, and galaxies, NASA also has a down-to-earth side that involves bidding procedures, negotiating contracts, and working with privatesector vendors.

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“NASA is an exciting agency in many ways,” said Kanzawa. “We are all dedicated to our mission of furthering the exploration of space, as well as our own planet.” In that role with the general counsel’s office, Kanzawa successfully defended protests of the Kennedy Space Center’s award of a $185 million information technology contract before the Government Accountability Office and Court of Federal Claims.

He also advised NASA officials in the re-awarding of a $1.12 billion Mission Systems Operations contract, supporting the International Space Station, as well as NASA’s Orion, Space Launch System, and Commercial Crew programs.

A Career-Shaping 2L Program Kanzawa grew up in Ann Arbor, Michigan, planning to go into healthcare like his father Mark, a physician, and mother Kim, a nurse. After enrolling at the University of Michigan, he found the political science courses captured his attention, and he decided on a career in law rather than medicine. He graduated in 2012 with a degree in political science, while gaining university honors for three semesters, and playing on the University of Michigan Club Baseball Team. “One of my baseball teammates had applied to Miami Law, so I started researching the school,” he said. “One of the big attractions for me was the J.D./LL.M. program in tax law. I knew I wanted to go into business law, and liked the federal income tax course, but decided not to pursue the dual degree.” During his second year at Miami Law, Kanzawa heard about the school’s Semester in Practice program in Washington, D.C., with classes taught by Charlton Copeland, professor of law and the M. Minnette Massey Chair in Law. “I liked the fact that the program was fluid in nature, and covered administrative law, regulations, and legislation—all my areas of interest,” Kanzawa said. After an interview with fellow law ’Cane Monica Aquino-Thieman, A.B. ’96; J.D. ’99, Kanzawa was placed with the space agency’s Office of the General Counsel for his spring 2L semester. As a law student, Kanzawa worked in the contracts and acquisition integrity groups at NASA, looking at everything from procurement bids to policy proposals. For example, Kanzawa had a

firsthand opportunity to discuss proposed legislation like the Stop Unworthy Spending or the SUSPEND Act, which would have established a centralized body within the General Services Administration to manage all executive agency vendor suspension and debarment activities. “The act would have excluded poorly performing contractors and those with criminal violations from the GSA’s pool of vendors after a review of their conduct,” he said. “Ultimately, the centralizing act did not pass, and each executive agency can continue to make its own decisions regarding vendors.” Kanzawa said the externship program allowed him to apply many of the tools and concepts from Copeland’s course, which met on Saturdays after the workweek. “It gave me a great preview of what it was like to work for the Office of the General Counsel, and I was able to take that experience back to my course work.” While participating in the program, Kanzawa developed a passion for NASA’s mission, and, when he was offered a summer internship, he accepted the offer without hesitation. Kanzawa continued to excel in law school, becoming a Dean’s Fellow and receiving the University of Miami Business Law Review Best Editor Award, and publishing an article on “Legal and Practical Issues in Implementing Executive Order 13673: Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces.” After earning his J.D., cum laude, in 2015, Kanzawa was hired by NASA’s Office of the General Counsel, moved to Washington and joined the Virginia and D.C. bars. Defending Contractor Awards and Performance One of Kanzawa’s major roles at NASA was defending contract awards. Typically, multiple vendors will pursue a contract, he said. The agency evaluates those offers and awards

to share their knowledge and expertise gave me a good foundation for starting my career in law.” n

Note: After spending three years at NASA, Ken Kanzawa recently took a position as an associate at the Northern Virginia law firm of Odin, Feldman & Pittleman, P.C., where he focuses his practice on government contracts litigation and counseling.


He also plays recreational softball. “Staying active in sports is a great stress reducer, and it helps me focus on projects when I’m in the office,” he said. Looking back on his Miami Law experience, Kanzawa says he benefited from the legal research and writing courses, which are central to the practice of law. “I really enjoyed the professors’ willingness to meet with me and my fellow students,” he added. “Being able

Photo by Marvell Gay

the contract to the contractor who offers the best value. “However, a disappointed contractor may challenge the agency’s evaluation of its offer and file a bid protest,” he said. Kanzawa also worked with Aquino-Thieman on issues related to a contractor’s performance. “The government wants to do business with responsible companies,” he said. “If a contractor commits fraud or does a poor job, NASA can exclude that company from future contracts. Or the agency might decide to negotiate a compliance agreement, setting terms and conditions for performance. As you can imagine, hearings on those issues can be very contentious, as vendors want to demonstrate they are worthy of holding government contracts.” Kanzawa was also able to see some of NASA’s space technology and equipment firsthand. He recently attended a conference at the John Glenn Research Center in Cleveland and visited the Simulated Lunar Operations Facility. “This is where NASA tests tires for the Lunar Rover on different types of sand, helping to develop lightweight and durable tires that perform well in extraterrestrial missions,” he said. Kanzawa also defended an engineering service contract for the James Webb Space Telescope, a collaborative project for NASA, the European Space Agency, and the Canadian Space Agency. Designed as the successor to the Hubble Space Telescope, the highly sensitive imaging instrument is scheduled to be launched in 2021. Meanwhile, Kanzawa was also able to provide mentorship to NASA legal interns, including a Miami Law 2L student during the 2017 spring semester. When not engaged in legal work, Kanzawa enjoys spending time with his fiancée, Meghan, golfing, and running.



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CHRISTOPHER DEMOSBROWN, J.D. ’94, STANDS AT THE ENTRANCE OF SHUBERT ALLEY AT THE HEART OF BROADWAY’S THEATRE DISTRICT WHERE TWO OF THE GREAT WHITE WAY’S MOST STORIED THEATRES—THE BOOTH AND THE SHUBERT— STAND BACK-TO-BACK. On this crisp November morning, the marquee advertises American Son, starring Kerry Washington, of Scandal fame, and Steven Pasquale, known for his role on Rescue Me. The story of is one of the vulnerability of young black men in interactions with police told through bi-racial parents searching for their son. The Miami lawyer will see the show tonight, opening night, with his wife Stephanie and his middle school aged daughters by his side. He has seen the show dozens of times, in previews, on other stages, but first in his head. He is the playwright. The Road to Broadway He once thought he’d be an actor and struck out to Hollywood after college to hone his chops. Five years and few roles later, he admitted that he, even though he looks a little like Doug Stamper on House of Cards only taller, was likely never going to be “discovered.” Reading and writing reviews of hundreds of scripts for Universal Studios had paid the rent, but it didn’t scratch the itch to be a creative force in the universe. With the tall palms of Sunset Boulevard in his rearview mirror and an acceptance letter from Miami Law in the glovebox, Chris Brown came home. “I still had some thoughts of going into politics and law school seemed like a way to go about that. It’s one of the few big decisions I’ve made that I’ve never regretted. I feel such gratitude to the University of Miami because they

basically gave me a free ticket. The scholarship gave me a huge advantage in that I wasn't chasing student loan debt after." His three years of law school went by filled with trial advocacy and law review, and the plan to run for office someday loomed somewhere far ahead. As a good start, a job as a prosecutor with the Miami-Dade State Attorney’s Office awaited him after graduation, where his Hollywood skills came in very handy. “The practice of law involves having procedures that you follow to help you tackle problems, and that kind of problem-solving is handy in playwriting,” he says. “I make timelines where I put the facts, documents, or witnesses that help you establish information, where you are trying to control when and how it comes out. “The American system of law is adversarial, meaning there is conflict inherent in it, and that is what good playwriting is about: good conflict that leads to some end,” he says. It was at the prosecutor’s office that he met and married Stephanie Demos, and the once Chris Brown became Demos-Brown, melding their names to cement the connections to one another and their two girls.

A Not So Secret Life Demos-Brown loves to practice law and enjoys the life and the trial practice firm he and his wife have built, Beasley, Demos & Brown, LLC. But he also has a not so secret passion as a playwright, lived late at night, early in the morning, and when traveling. He has written plays, comedies, and dramas, mostly set in Miami, with subjects ranging from the Cuban diaspora and cocaine cowboys to satires of the American Constitution in The November Laws and a dark comedy about the U.S. tort system in Wrongful Death & Other Circus Acts. American Son which Netflix is

adapting with Washington and Pasquale is not so much a departure from his earlier works, but more of a taking on of a subject that chafed at him: “Three incidents prompted the play: Eric Garner, Treyvon Martin, and Tamir Rice. Treyvon Martin was a case where I could absolutely see any son; accosted by some maniacal, self-designated vigilante. Eric Garner was one where I could actually see the police point of view.” “Our tribalism is magnified when we talk about race. Our discussions of race tend to be discussions that happen among our own tribe. You don't often get into frank discussions about race with people who are not your own race, so what you end up seeing are public projections of people of different races rather than genuine feelings and internal differences,” Demos-Brown says. "I hear things among family members and friends that would shock (or probably wouldn't) African Americans. And I’m sure around a Black dinner table at Thanksgiving there are things that are said that white people would be very surprised to hear." Never mind that Demos-Brown (and his wife) are founding members of Zoetic Stage, a company dedicated to staging new works homed at the Adrienne Arsht Center; he has won most every South Florida theatre award; and he now has a show selling out nightly on Broadway, he is in no hurry to change up his personal story. "If there were a way to make a living exclusively writing and not have to move my family to Los Angeles, I'd probably do it, but we have a wonderful practice, and our home is here," he says. "What I found invaluable about UM is that most of the people who graduate from the law school practice here, so there is a large referral network and people who give you support in your practice," he says. "If you want to practice in Miami, there really isn't a better place to go. And I still spend 80% of my time practicing law." n F OR MOR E


By Catharine Skipp


IN MEMORIAM Trailblazer, Mentor, and First Dean of Students— Jeannette Hausler, J.D. ’53

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eannette Otis Fuller Hausler died at her Coral Gables home on Thanksgiving Day, 2018, at the age of 89 after a fulfilling and interesting life. The first and former dean of students at the University of Miami School of Law was one of eight children born in Cuba to the Harvard-educated American adventurer William O. Fuller. Her mother, Jennie Marie Jewett, was the daughter of a wealthy Cuban sugar and cattle landowner who had come to the island nation from Massachusetts at the turn of the century. As a 10-year-old, Jeannette decided that she should study law; her parents sent her to study English under the tutelage of an order of Dominican nuns in the United States, then on to public school in Maine. She entered UM as a 16-year-old, receiving her undergraduate degree with honors before graduating from the School of Law in 1953, one of

five women in the class. She entered law school the same year her father graduated from Miami Law. After her graduation, Professor Richard Hausler, who taught contracts and taxation, reached out to Jeannette in weekly letters while she pursued her doctorate in civil law at the University of Havana and a romance blossomed. They married in Cuba at the historic La Iglesia del Sagrado Corazon de Jesus in Vedado. “Her memory within the Miami Law community will always be linked with the husband she loved so much, Professor Richard Hausler,” said Dean Emeritus Dennis O. Lynch. “They married in June 1955, two years after her graduation and together they fostered tremendous support for the school among our alumni. When the school held alumni events around the country, the first person the alumni would ask about was Dean Hausler and the second was Professor Hausler. To know them was to respect and admire them. IT WAS BECAUSE SHE WAS SUCH A TRUE TRAILBLAZER, A MENTOR, A COMMUNITY PILLAR, AND A LOVING WIFE AND MOTHER THAT THE ALUMNI ASSOCIATION VOTED TO NAME HER THE FIRST RECIPIENT OF THE ASSOCIATION’S ‘ALUMNA OF DISTINCTION AWARD.’” Jeannette was admitted to practice

law in Florida in 1953 and was a lifelong member of The Florida Bar. Before returning to Miami Law in 1974 as the first dean of students, both father and daughter taught English to Cuban refugees for the Dade School Board. “Dean Jeanette Hausler was a tireless pioneer in the field of student services,” said Janet Stearns, current dean of students. “Her devotion was unprecedented and unparalleled in her 31 years as Miami Law’s Dean of Students. As a result, Miami Law graduated generations of highly regarded, extremely professional, and noted lawyers and judges. Those graduates and the communities they serve are forever in her debt. I was blessed to have her as a mentor, and strive daily to honor her legacy of compassion and high ethical standards.” Shortly after the Cuban revolution, the family ran afoul Fidel Castro’s government that was seizing the 10,000-acre property that had been in the family since 1903. Her father and later her brother Robert were arrested. Her brother was tortured and executed by a Cuban firing squad in 1960. (A U.S. Court awarded the family $400 million in 2006, though was never paid by the Cuban government.) Jeannette remained active in The Florida Bar, St. Thomas University, UM’s Iron Arrow Honor Society, as a Eucharistic minister at Epiphany Catholic Church, the lay religious order

of the Dames of Malta; and Phi Delta Kappa, the educator’s organization. “It was my privilege to work closely with Jeannette Hausler during my tenure as the law school’s associate dean,” said Bernard H. Oxman, the Richard A. Hausler Professor of Law. “I observed first-hand the reasons why she was so beloved and respected by the law school’s alumni. Her attention to the needs of the students, both

collectively and individually, was profoundly important in a student body of over a thousand students. Each student was accorded as much time as needed. Dean Hausler had an uncanny knack for ferreting out the source of a student’s problem and finding the means to address it. A stickler for instilling in the students an understanding of the importance of adherence to ethical standards, she

also advocated humane application of regulations, and consistently pressed for outcomes that best promoted the welfare of the particular student.” Hausler was preceded in death by Richard, a fixture at the law school for 52 years until his death in 2000, her infant son, Charles Arthur, and daughter Ellen. She is survived by her children Jennie, Donald, and Philomena and a granddaughter. n

Jeanette Hausler with Dean Emeritus & Professor of Law Emeritus Dennis O. Lynch



IN MEMORIAM Greenberg Traurig Founder Robert H. Traurig, J.D. ’50

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obert H. Traurig, considered to be the “Father of Miami Land Use Law” and the “Dean of Zoning,” died on July 17 at the age of 93. The Miami Law alumnus was one of the three founders of global law firm Greenberg Traurig, LLP, which they started just over 50 years ago and today has more than 2,000 attorneys in 38 offices worldwide. “This is a tremendous loss for the community, the legal profession, and for me, personally,” said Larry J. Hoffman, J.D. ’54, founder and currently founding chairman of Greenberg Traurig. “Bob was unique and a huge influence on all of us at the law firm—lawyers and staff. His accomplishments and contributions to our firm, the legal profession, and our community will remain as standards always.” Traurig was born in 1925, in Waterbury, Connecticut. The Great Depression permanently relocated the Traurig family to Miami in 1939.

Traurig attended Miami Senior High School and upon graduation enlisted in the Navy, serving as a Navy Communications Operator from 1943 until 1946. After the war, Traurig returned to the city to attend the University of Miami, where he played basketball, graduating with a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration, going on to study at Miami Law. Two years after earning his law degree, Traurig would start to practice, but first, he returned to the Navy from 1951 to 1952 to serve in the Korean War. After a brief stint at a local Miami law firm, Traurig began his practice in 1954, and for 13 years focused primarily on real estate, representing small builders and mortgage companies. In 1967, Traurig partnered with Mel Greenberg and Larry Hoffman to establish Greenberg Traurig Hoffman, recognizing a niche they could capitalize on, as each had expertise in a different area of practice: tax, real estate, and corporate law. Traurig stayed connected to UM and was inducted into Iron Arrow, the University’s oldest tradition, and highest honor society. In 2012, Greenberg Traurig made a leadership gift to the University of Miami School of Law to name the Robert TraurigGreenberg Traurig LL.M. Program in Real Property Development. “We are immensely grateful and fortunate to be able to train law students and lawyers in real estate

development in a program that bears the name of one of the most significant giants in the industry,” said Associate Dean Raquel M. Matas, acting director of the program. He was honored in 2011 by the school’s Law Alumni Association with its Alumnus of Distinction award. At the dinner ceremony, Miami Law Dean Patricia D. White said TRAURIG HAD MADE AN “EXTRAORDINARY CONTRIBUTION TO THIS COMMUNITY,” and that it was essential that Miami have a great university “that produces people like Bob Traurig.” A generous donor to the law school, Traurig was also a long-time member of the University of Miami’s Citizen’s Board. As a Greenberg Traurig shareholder and founder, Traurig continued to be instrumental in nearly every critical land-use case in Miami. He was influential regarding the development of downtown Miami and suburban regions, as well as the westward development to the Everglades. “He was a member of those wonderful post World War II classes at the law school,” said Dean Emeritus Dennis Lynch. “He was a pillar of the South Florida legal community, an unsurpassed real estate attorney, a civic leader, and a mentor to many young attorneys including the school’s graduates. The school is proud to have our real estate program named in his honor. He was one of a kind.” n


t seems as if anyone who encountered John Hogan, J.D. ’77, uses the same words to describe the 68-yearold who died in July following complications from a bone marrow transplant in Houston, Texas. Whether they knew Hogan from law school, the Miami-Dade State Attorney’s Office, the Attorney General’s Office of the United States, or from his 20-year private practice career at Holland & Knight, they are all centered on the same theme. Kind. Generous. Ethical. And quietly funny. John Hogan, a top trial lawyer and former chief of staff to former Attorney General Janet Reno, spent more than 40 years practicing law both in the public and private sectors. Hogan, a Massachusetts native, went straight to the Miami-Dade State Attorney’s office, under Janet Reno, after graduation from Miami Law. He quickly built a reputation as a prosecutor with a steady hand and open door, which came as no surprise to his Miami Law classmates. “I knew John in law school and worked as a law clerk with him at Shutts and Bowen,” says Harley Tropin, founding partner and president of Kozyak Tropin & Throckmorton. “What I remember about John from law school—and this never changed—was a warm smile and that he always did the right thing.” During his 14 years, many as chief assistant state attorney for Miami-Dade County, he racked up 70 winning trials in a row, according to the Miami Herald.

He first-chaired some of the most highprofile cases in the history of Miami, including convicting Miami Police officer William Lozano in the shooting deaths of two African Americans, which lead to two days of rioting in Miami’s Black communities. When the verdict was overturned four years later, Hogan, ever the peacemaker, urged the city to remain calm. “Miami has to show the maturity,” he said. “This will be the ultimate test, and I am convinced we will pass it.” Hogan would follow Janet Reno to Washington, serving as her chief of staff, counselor to the attorney general, and associate deputy attorney general. He was a mentor to many and earned kudos far and wide. Miami-Dade State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle, who was his equal in the office under Reno and who has held the office since Reno’s departure, told the Herald that Hogan was “like a brother” to her. “HE WAS LIKE THIS BRIGHT LIGHT THAT ILLUMINATED EVERYTHING AND EVERYONE,” she said. “But he never cast a shadow. That light he shined on us may be extinguished, but he will live on in all of us.” Former Miami U.S. Attorney Wilfredo Ferrer credited Hogan with launching his career. Hogan arranged a meeting with Attorney General Reno while Ferrer was working as a fellow in the Clinton White House. Ferrer would later become deputy chief of staff under Hogan and they would be reunited decades later at Holland & Knight.

“What Janet Reno loved about him was that he was all about pursuing justice in every case and in every circumstance,” Ferrer told the Herald. “He taught me and so many others about how the law should be used as a powerful force for good.” At Holland & Knight, Hogan served in various leadership positions, rising to the firm’s chair of the 400-strong litigation section in Miami, where he was sought out for his advice and counsel throughout his two decades there. “John was an excellent student and better person,” says classmate Dean Colson, founding partner at Colson, Hicks, Eidson. “He had a career, both in the public and private sectors, that should be admired by all practicing lawyers. John never stopped giving back.” Hogan is survived by his spouse, Mickey Miller, siblings, and many nieces and nephews. n F OR MOR E


Top Trial Lawyer John Hogan, J.D. ’77




Be well, Mark F. Raymond, J.D. ’83 President, Law Alumni Association


We all have recollections of our law school days including classmates, professors, classes, anxieties, successes and challenges. It is my mission, this year as your Law Alumni Association (LAA) President, to rekindle those memories and encourage your active participation. We have over 22,000 alumni and countless friends of the School of law. The LAA Board of Directors and I are committed to enhancing the way we provide information and services to each of you. This 2018-19 academic year has been busy. Last June we hosted a very successful Alumni reception at the Annual Florida Bar Convention in Orlando, FL where we presented the Distinguished Alumni Award to Stuart Z. Grossman, J.D. ’73 and the Alumni Leadership Award to Senator William S. Galvano, J.D. ’92. It is my pleasure to acknowledge the generosity of a distinguished alumnus, Robert E. Dooley, J.D. ’53 who not only established an endowed scholarship at the School of Law, but also became a member of the University’s Merrick Society with a leadership gift to name one of our Law School Buildings. Bob is part of ‘the greatest generation’ and you can hear his career trajectory in his own words via our Oral History Project. I hope that all of you will have a chance to share your story with us when contacted by the Alumni staff and if you are ready now, do not wait to be contacted—reach out to us! We are documenting the history of our school from the Alumni perspective using the decanal timeline commencing with our first Dean, Richmond Rasco (19281931), to current times. Our goal is to have the project completed and be able to share it with all of you by the University’s centennial celebration in 2025. Kudos to last year’s fundraising Committee, chaired by Jason P. Karalla, J.D. ’02, Shareholder at Carlton Fields Miami, their hard work and ongoing support allowed the school to increase giving this past year. My gratitude to Timothy A. Kolaya, J.D. ’08, Shareholder at Greenberg Traurig Miami, for agreeing to serve as this year’s Fundraising Chair. The first six months of the year have been very successful, we have obtained over $3.5 million in pledges and gifts. A special thanks to our Young Alumni Committee; these graduates of the last ten years have enthusiastically embraced the challenge to keep their generation of graduates engaged with our school and our students. Thank you! Dean Patricia D. White returned from her sabbatical in January of 2019. We will be hosting a proper reception for her which will involve the establishment of the Patricia D. White Dean’s Endowment to Support Excellence in Innovation. We thank our Acting Dean, Osamudia James, and Acting Vice-Dean, Andres Sawicki, for their energetic support of our Association and the School of Law during Dean White’s sabbatical. We have enjoyed success in contacting our alumni through publications, social media, sponsoring numerous social events, CLE’s and other mentoring events with our students. I take great pride in my work as President of the Law Alumni Association this year and encourage you to attend and promote our alumni activities both locally and across the country. Please feel free to contact me to share your thoughts, concerns and special requests.



$1.1 million Contributed by J.D. ’53 to Advance

Scholarship and Innovation


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President Julio Frenk, Robert Dooley, J.D. ’53, and Dean Patricia D. White


By Catharine Skipp and Michelle Valencia


obert Earle Dooley, J.D. ’53, took the podium to a standing room only crowd at this fall’s building dedication armed with a pocketful of quips and jokes: about being 91 years old, being a lawyer, speaking to a captive audience, and about being the other Dooley at the University of Miami (Dooly Memorial is not a relative). “They asked me to say a few words; you don’t just say that to a lawyer,” Dooley said, “because he will eat the microphone. “This will only take a little while. Some of you have a bus

going back, but I’m on it, so you can’t leave until I’m done,” he said, pulling out four pages of single space “remarks” from his coat pocket. The 1953 law alumnus recently made a gift of $1.1 million to the University of Miami School of Law that will be used to endow a named scholarship and support a fund that encourages the promotion of faculty research and teaching innovation. “The loyalty, commitment, and enthusiasm of our donors are at the core of the University’s efforts to implement a bold strategic vision as we approach our 100th birthday—now just seven years away,” said UM President Julio Frenk at the

“Bob Dooley’s wonderful gift will make a lasting difference and allow us to invest in innovative faculty work as well as provide needed scholarship support for deserving students.”

Robert Dooley with Sebastian the Ibis

insurance and real estate broker. Tired of the harsh winters, he moved back to South Florida in 1967, where he settled in Fort Lauderdale and focused his law practice on real estate, wills and trusts, probate, workers’ compensation, and personal injury. He also built and developed residential and commercial properties in the South Florida area. A member and generous supporter of the University of Miami’s Citizens Board for more than 30 years, Dooley has also been a charitable benefactor of Hurricane athletics and the Diabetes Research Institute at the Miller School of Medicine. He has a long history of involvement in the Fort Lauderdale community, where he served as governor of the Broward County Trial Lawyers Association and was a former member of the Broward County Estate Planning Council, and an elder and deacon of the First Presbyterian Church of Fort Lauderdale. Dooley’s speech focused on things about the law school, changed and unchanged: “There is one thing that hasn’t changed in all these years; the determination by the School of Law to educate and produce the finest lawyers, the finest jurists, the finest professors of law, and leaders of industry, business, and government, not only in Florida but all over the globe and throughout the country.”  F OR MOR E


event. “The philanthropy of Bob and donors like him makes it possible to recruit and retain high-quality academic talent, to advance groundbreaking research and scholarship, to deliver world-class patient care, and to position the University of Miami as a truly global institution.” The “C” building, which houses the Dean’s Office Suite and Alumni Offices, is now named in Dooley's honor. “Bob Dooley’s wonderful gift will make a lasting difference and allow us to invest in innovative faculty work as well as provide needed scholarship support for deserving students,” said Patricia D. White, dean of the School of Law. In turn, White bestowed upon Dooley a commissioned Ibis sculpture created by the Everglades artist Eric Berg. “I know firsthand the power that philanthropy has to change someone’s life,” said Elizabeth Montano, editorin-chief of the University of Miami Law Review, where an editor will receive a scholarship annually. “Because of the transformative generosity of donors like Mr. Dooley, students like me are able to pursue a legal education and career without the overwhelming financial burden that would have kept us from ever realizing this dream.” Montano presented Dooley with an engraved leatherbound volume containing all the articles and comments that Dooley worked on for the law review as a student as well as the article that he wrote and was published in volume six. The retired attorney and real estate developer served as executive editor of The Lawyer, a student publication, and leading article editor and comments editor in 1953 of the Miami Law Quarterly, the precursor of The University of Miami Law Review at Miami Law. A Chicago native, Dooley enrolled at the University of Miami as an undergraduate, but thanks to a classmate who suggested he become an attorney to “defend the world,” he quickly switched to the School of Law. Dooley, who graduated magna cum laude and second in his class, returned to Illinois to practice law and work as an


Photo by Jenny Abreu

Scholarship to Aid First-Generation Law Students


ttorneys Guillermo Levy, J.D. ’00, and Christina Ceballos-Levy, J.D. ’00, have recently created a scholarship fund at Miami Law that helps firstgeneration law students finance their education. “We were both fortunate enough to have been recipients of scholarships during our time at Miami Law, and we felt it was our duty, and a privilege, to be able to give back in some measure,” said Levy, who graduated summa cum laude and served as projects editor of the University of Miami Law Review and is now senior corporate counsel at Caterpillar Inc. “The support, financial and otherwise, that we received during our time at Miami Law set us up for the professional success that both of us have enjoyed. Like it did for us, we hope that

the scholarship will reward deserving law students and will encourage them down the road, as well as others who are in a position to do so now, to pay it forward.” Ceballos-Levy, a shareholder at Kenny Nachwalter PA, graduated from Miami Law summa cum laude and served as executive editor of the University of Miami Law Review. She has focused her practice on complex commercial litigation and professional malpractice defense and has spent many years teaching legal research and writing to students in Miami Law’s U.S. and Transnational Law for Foreign-Trained Lawyers LL.M. Program. She has many happy memories of her time at Miami Law. “When I look back, there were so many moments— preparing for competitions with my moot court partners, lunches shared with colleagues in the law review office, fishing trips on the weekends—they all were integral to my experience at Miami Law and the feeling that it was there where I made these friends for life,” said Ceballos-Levy. Levy remembers the time his wife was late to Professor Bernard Oxman’s class and the professor didn’t let her into the classroom. “I still get to brag about being the one that didn’t get thrown out of class!” The couple hopes the Guillermo Levy and Christina Ceballos-Levy Scholarship will make a legal education accessible to first-generation law students. “We want the recipient to have a certain quality in common with each of us—a first generation lawyer in his or her family,” said Levy. “With this achievement comes not only the responsibility of helping your family members solve all of their legal problems, but also a great source of pride. We are happy to make a legal education more accessible to men and women who would be the first in their families to embark on this great journey that is the legal profession.” 

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Morgan Lewis Scholarship to Benefit Students from Underrepresented Communities



he global law firm of Morgan Lewis & Bockius recently established a scholarship at Miami Law to provide assistance to law students from traditionally underrepresented communities. “The firm established this scholarship in celebration of the office’s 40th anniversary in Miami,” said Robert Brochin, Morgan Lewis’ Miami office managing partner. “In 1977, Morgan Lewis was one of the first international firms to open an office in Miami and it has always been important to the firm to support law students in our community.” The firm—with its 30 offices in North America, Asia, Europe, and the Middle East—provides comprehensive litigation, corporate, finance, restructuring, employment and benefits, and intellectual property services in all major industries. The recipients of this scholarship will be known as the Morgan Lewis Scholars. “Our goals for the Morgan Lewis Scholarship are to advance diversity in the practice of law, and to support the efforts of excellent diverse law students in need of financial assistance,” said Brochin. “Morgan Lewis feels it has a responsibility to contribute to the betterment of the law profession by supporting diverse students who wish to practice law in our community.” 

John Hogan’s Legacy Honored with Public Interest Litigation Fund

Endowed Law Scholarship Created in Memory of Dean Emerita Mary E. Doyle


uring her tenure as dean of the University of Miami School of Law, the late Mary Doyle shaped the school and changed its trajectory. Charismatic and influential, she played a vital role in enhancing the school’s relationship with the legal community and the judiciary, and in raising its profile within and outside the University. After her passing from Parkinson’s disease in December 2016, Doyle’s colleagues at the law school set about creating an endowed scholarship in her name, in gratitude and celebration of her legacy. Through the generosity of former students, family, friends, and other admirers, the Mary E. Doyle Endowed Scholarship Fund has recently been fully funded at $100,000. Doyle served as dean from 1986 to 1994, and as interim dean in 1998-99. A powerhouse environmental policymaker, she taught property, land use, and water law, and was a founding co-director of the Leonard and Jayne Abess Center for Ecosystem Science and Policy. Those who knew her are grateful that the Mary E. Doyle Endowed Scholarship Fund will keep the memory and spirit of this trailblazing lawyer, teacher, and leader alive for future generations. 




ohn Hogan, J.D. ’77, was a universally respected lawyer, whose career included service at the highest levels of the public and private sector. Hogan was the first statewide prosecutor of Florida, the chief assistant prosecutor for Miami-Dade County, served at senior levels of the Department of Justice, and led the litigation section of Holland & Knight. He selflessly devoted his time and effort to serving clients, mentoring young lawyers, leading public and private organizations, and helping the underprivileged. All who knew him benefited from his advice and counsel, always delivered in an unassuming, pragmatic way. It is not surprising that Holland & Knight is honoring his legacy by establishing the John M. Hogan Endowed Fund for Public Interest Litigation at the University of Miami School of Law following his unexpected death in July. “John was revered by his colleagues because of his commitment to the firm, our clients, our communities, and our profession,” said Steven Sonberg, managing partner of Holland & Knight and member of the School of Law's Visiting Committee, explaining why the firm was establishing the endowed fund. “We can think of no better way to honor him than to encourage young lawyers to follow in his footsteps by giving back to the profession and to the community.” Hogan maintained an enduring connection with his alma mater as a donor and as a volunteer. He served on the School of Law’s Alumni Association Board of Directors and its National Advisory Council. In 2016, the Law Alumni Association awarded him an Alumni Achievement Award in recognition of his outstanding work in both public service and private practice. The John M. Hogan Scholars will serve as certified legal interns in the offices of Legal Services of Greater Miami and the Miami-Dade State Attorney’s office. Through this service, the recipients will serve the public and the community. Future generations will learn of Hogan’s contributions and accomplishments and be inspired by his exemplary legacy as an alumnus and lawyer. 


Generous Grant Helps Environmental Justice Clinic Enlarge Advocacy Scope By Michelle Valencia

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Photo by Jenny Abreu


hanks to a generous grant from the Mysun Charitable Foundation, Miami Law’s Environmental Justice Clinic hired Daniela Tagtachian as its inaugural Mysun Foundation Fellow. The clinic provides advocacy assistance to communities discriminated against by public and private actors in the contexts of the built and natural environment. Their work lies at the intersection of civil rights, poverty law, public health, and environmental protection. Tagtachian, a graduate of the University of Chicago and University of Michigan Law School, has a background in poverty law and will enable the clinic to expand its education, research, policy, and advocacy work on the built environment. “Miami Law is delighted to welcome Daniela,” said Professor Anthony Alfieri, director of the Center for Ethics & Public Service and founder of the Environmental Justice Clinic. “She will enable the clinic to enlarge the scope of our education, policy, and advocacy work in the fields of both the built and natural environment, and moreover, to expand the breadth of our community and university-wide interdisciplinary partnerships in the fields of environmental protection and public health. We are grateful for the generosity of the Mysun Foundation in supporting this important work.” In addition to supporting the clinic’s work on the natural environment in the Old Smokey and Dunbar toxic tort cases, Tagtachian will be taking on new community projects addressing the environmental and public health consequences of municipal practices that adversely and disproportionally affect the well-being of low-income communities of color. Her work includes a campaign to remedy the adverse effects of displacement and resegregation in low-income, predominantly African American communities. After she graduated from law school, Tagtachian served as a researcher for the Policy Working Group on Global Development and Humanitarian Response and received a fellowship to work with the Slave Labor and Human Trafficking Clinic at the Federal University of Minas Gerais in Brazil.

After returning to the United States, she worked for Hogan Lovells US LLP as a litigation and international arbitration associate. In addition to chairing the Miami office’s Women’s Initiative Mentoring and Citizenship Subcommittee, her pro bono work included serving as the attorney ad litem for a child in foster care and evaluating the case of a prisoner of conscience from Turkey. Most recently, Tagtachian was recognized with the Dr. King Drum Major Award from People United to Save Humanity for Excellence for her contributions to education and social justice. 

Photo by Kinfay Moroti/The News-Press, Dunbar Sludge Site

Law Alumni

INITIATIVES HOPE ’Canefunder In rapid response to the devastating passage of Hurricanes Maria and Irma, the HOPE Public Interest Resource Center designed an initiative to place student fellows in targeted regions most deeply affected by these catastrophic weather events. Partnering with the Law Alumni & Development Office, the HOPE Summer Public Interest Program was selected to represent Miami Law and to benefit from an online ’Canefunder campaign promoted by the University of Miami. The goal was to achieve at least $10,000 in support for the initiative. Alumni, friends, and supporters of Miami Law helped HOPE exceed its goal and contributed $10,455. Due to this generosity, two students were able to complete HOPE Summer Fellowships in Puerto Rico, having been placed at the non-profit legal advocacy agencies Pro Bono, Inc. and One Stop Career Center. Thanks to everyone who participated and donated to this campaign.

Scholarship Funds The following scholarship funds were established recently, thanks to the generosity of alumni, supporters and friends of the School of Law. •

The Caren and Peter Prieto, J.D. ’85 Endowed Scholarship.

The John M. Hogan Endowed Scholarship for Public Interest Litigation established by the firm of Holland & Knight, and the family and friends of John Hogan.

The Alan S. Ross Endowed Memorial Scholarship, created by the family of Alan Ross, J.D. ’76.

The Ray H. Pearson Memorial Scholarship established by the firm of Richman Greer, P.A. in honor of Ray H. Pearson, J.D. ’49.

The Marc A. Fajer Scholarship established by former students, friends and colleagues; this fund will benefit deserving law students involved with LGBTQ legal advocacy.


Interested in establishing a scholarship? Contact the Office of Law Development & Alumni Relations at 305284-3470.

Young Alumni Committee For the fifth year in a row, the Young Alumni Committee hosted its signature social and fundraising event at the elegant Forge Restaurant on Miami Beach. The Forge, which is owned by alumnus Shareef Malnik, J.D. ’82, wowed the 120 attendees with gourmet hors d’oeuvres and fabulous cocktails. Guests perused and bid on the many attractive silent auction items available while reconnecting with old classmates and friends. Also in attendance was guest of honor, Jim Larrañaga, head coach of the University of Miami Men’s Basketball team. Special thanks to Young Alumni Committee Fundraising Chairs David Chaplin, J.D. ’13; Brett Holland, J.D. ’14; Max Leinoff, J.D. ’13; and Kamal Sleiman, J.D. 13.

Caren and Peter Prieto, J.D. ’89






DeAnna Allen, J.D. ’96

Edward Dabdoub, J.D. ’07

We’re turning 100!

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The University of Miami will celebrate the 100 th anniversary in 2025. As we approach this important milestone in our school’s history, the Law Alumni Association has embarked upon a new project to record the story of our law school through the eyes of our alumni. Following a timeline of the Deans of the law school from 1926 onward, alumni are invited to share on camera their most cherished memories and experiences as students. Beginning with Homecoming 2017, the classes of 1992, 1997, as well as members of the Black Law Students Association and Moot Court all participated and recorded their Miami Law story. Tales of favorite professors, classes, meaningful friendships and connections, and the impact of Miami Law on careers are popular subjects. As we look eagerly towards the University of Miami’s centennial in 2025, the Law Alumni Association aspires to educate our alumni community about Miami Law’s important place as one of the earliest professional schools established at


our alma mater. Chaired by Detra Shaw-Wilder, J.D. ’94, a past president of the Law Alumni Association, the project will be an important resource for documenting and promoting the history of our law school. Examples of interviews recorded include Burton Young, J.D. ’50, first Jewish president of The Florida Bar; Sonia Pressman Fuentes, J.D. ’57, co-founder of the National Organization for Women, who spoke about the crucial influence of Minnette Massey upon her early years; Edward Dabdoub, J.D. ’07, a double ’Cane, who was surrounded by many lawyers in the family in his native Jamaica and developed a strong sense of advocacy at a young age and works passionately on behalf of his clients today; and DeAnna Allen, J.D. ’96, with a background in engineering who always wanted to pursue a legal education—today she works at the intersection of law and technology as a prominent intellectual property lawyer in Washington, D.C. 

Pancakes & Bacon with


By Catharine Skipp reakfast is Marcelyn Cox’s favorite meal. It matters less where—highbrow or dive—but crisp bacon is a has-to-have; pancakes are runners-up. Sharing the first meal of the day with the assistant dean of Career Development at Miami Law is often a food minefield since every breakfast is compared against Rae's, a time capsule of a diner in Santa Monica, California, which earns

a 15/10 rating in her imaginary breakfast scorebook. Rae’s provides fond memories of her time in Southern California where she did her undergraduate studies. “I am a morning person, and I wake up hungry,” she says. “My day starts off well if I have a good breakfast.” As we slide into a sleek gray leatherette banquette at a deli in South Miami, a pancake served on a pizza pan wafts by and Cox looks a little love struck.




Photo by Joshua Prezant


Assistant Dean Marcelyn Cox



Pancakes & Bacon with Assistant Dean Marcelyn Cox

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Cox, or Marcy as she is to friends and family, has loved breakfast since she was a little girl growing up in Key West. Any breakfast at home featured a full plate of savories; no bowl of cold cereal for the Coxes.


Her island town has undergone a sea change since the days when Cox accompanied her grandmother paying her bills on foot all over downtown before heading back to the family home on Truman Street, a 19th-century conch house, where Cox’s uncle, Cecil, still lives. (Her grandmother, Ruby, never felt the need to buy a car or get a driver’s license; everything she needed was just a quick walk away.) Cox's grandfather owned and ran Club 21, a bar in what is now called Bahama Village. It was the favorite haunt of local politicians and a Rockefeller, with a gambling joint out back. Cox lived an idyllic and rich life between school and band, roller skating, movies, and strolling on Duval Street. Key West had every kind of school sports teams and little leagues; the culture revolved around Friday night games, like many small towns. But the Coxes were also jazz and rhythm and blues listeners as well as voracious readers. "It wasn't unusual for everyone in my family to be at home and in their rooms reading," says Cox "and all different kinds of books. We just read, read, read." An early favorite was the Harold Robbins 1948 sizzler of gangster passion, "Never Love a Stranger," which was on her mom’s bookshelf when Marcy was in 4th grade. "My mother said to me, 'You can read any book you want if you can understand the words.’ Nothing was off

limits," Cox says. “My parents were very progressive, they were educators, and they were always direct and honest." She also read the sports page as a 5-year-old, discussing football with her dad at the dinner table. Her mother was a Teacher of the Year and the science coordinator for Monroe County Schools; she was the person who introduced sex education into the public schools. Her father was the assistant superintendent of Schools and an elected member for the utility board, Keys Energy. Music was also a constant in the Cox home. She followed in her sister’s steps, starting piano and cello as a 6-year-old. Cox graduated to the alto saxophone in junior high. An uncle in Kansas City played the sax in a jazz band. "I knew what a sax sounded like from my parents' and grandparents’ albums, with John Coltrane being a favorite. I loved music and playing the sax. I practiced nearly every day and made Florida All-State five times." Movies are another thread that weaves through Cox's life. Despite the trauma of watching Alfred Hitchcock's 1963 horror-thriller The Birds as a 3-year-old, she grew to love film (Cox obtained a master of fine arts in film from the University of Miami in 2004) though she still flinches when a bird flies near. Her aunt and older sister wanted to see the flick and figured that she was too young to understand. “That was clearly not the case,” she laughs in that full-throated Marcy way. Even as a young girl, Cox knew two things: she would go away to college, and she would be a lawyer. “I first knew what a lawyer was from watching ‘Perry Mason,’" she says. "Then the daughter of a good friend of the family came to visit. She was a lawyer and wanted to be a judge. We talked about law schools." The family friend, Leah Simms,

would later be the first African American woman to become a judge in the state of Florida. “My cousin Linda Kelly Kearson (former general counsel for the Eleventh Judicial Circuit) attended Miami Law in the eighties; my cousin Raymone Bain worked for the Carter White House and as a prominent publicist and attorney representing the likes of Sugar Ray Leonard and Michael Jackson. “My parents served as the best role models, but I also had other incredibly strong Black, female role models throughout my life,” Cox says, "which meant that I was always steady and secure in whatever I did or wanted to do.” After a high school career filled with concert, jazz, and marching band, Cox headed off to the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, the school she had fallen in love with during a family trip. There, she majored in political science and joined the Spirit of Troy, the school’s marching band. Band would take her to college stadiums all over the world. Cox loved California and decided to remain for law school, attending Boalt Hall School of Law at the University of California, Berkeley, where she was a member of the California Law Review. After practicing law for seven years in California, Cox returned to South Florida and joined the law school in 1997. She has been a member of the administration since. The table is a car wreck of syrupy plates, bits of bacon, glasses dried with orange pulp, and half-empty coffee cups as our breakfast feast winds down. Cox starts a Yelp-worthy critique of the New York-style delicatessen, commenting on everything from the number of blueberries in the pancake to syrup presentation. "It was good," says Cox. "It's no Rae's though." *Sigh* 

Make a Charitable Gift Annuity What is a CGA?

The charitable gift annuity (CGA) is a planning tool that recognizes the rewards of giving begin with the desire to make a gift. By transferring cash or stock, the University agrees to make payments for life to you, you and a loved one, or another person. Each payment is fixed and the amount of each payment will depend on the age of the person who receives the payments.


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