Monday, August 21, 2017
The Central States Regional Writing Conference is being held on Friday and Saturday, September 15-16, at the IU Robert H. McKinney School of Law in Indianapolis.
Conference Registration: To access the conference site and register, please go to https://mckinneylaw.iu.edu/LWIconference/.
Scholars' Forum: An ALWD Scholars Forum will be held before the start of the conference, on Friday, September 15, 2017, from 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM (lunch included). Participants can present a work in progress or even an idea or abstract to a group of legal writing faculty followed by a discussion of the work. Each participating scholar has twenty minutes to present the work, followed by a twenty-minute question and answer session. Presented works can either be early ideas or substantial drafts. If interested, please register for the Scholars Forum on or before August 25, 2017, at https://mckinneylaw.iu.edu/LWIconference/ALWD-scholars.html
Conference Hotel: A block of rooms has been reserved at the JW Marriott, less than a 10-minute walk (0.4 miles) to the law school. The discounted room rate is $169/night. The block of rooms has been expanded but will fill soon. You may reserve a room through the hotel website with the conference discount link.
Hat tip to Cynthia Adams.
Thursday, August 17, 2017
The 2017 Annual Capital Area Legal Writing Conference will be held on Saturday, October 21, 2017 at Regent University School of Law. There will be no conference fee.
Presentation proposals are invited on topics related to teaching legal writing, including evolving pedagogies, teaching ideas, developments in legal research and writing scholarship, teaching international students, ideas for using the legal writing curriculum to help students develop professional identities, assessment, and preparing our students to succeed in the workplace. Presentations should be either 25 or 50 minutes in length. Individual and panel presentations are welcome.
The deadline to submit proposals is August 31, 2017. To submit a proposal, please contact Janis Kirkland at email@example.com.
Friday, August 11, 2017
If you're a member of the Association of Legal Writing Directors (ALWD), you have a chance to participate in one of the organization's committees during the coming academic year. There are many committees to choose from on the 2017-18 Committee List. You should submit your "Committee Preference Form" to ALWD by August 15, 2017.
1. Bylaws Committee: Periodically reviews the ALWD By-Laws; suggests changes to the by-laws for board approval
2. New Directors Committee: Provides support to new directors; organizes meetings with new directors at conferences
3. Leadership & Development Committee: Provides mentoring opportunities to directors; helps develop the leadership skills of ALWD members; promotes leadership within ALWD
4. Diversity Committee: Serves as a resource for all Committees to ensure inclusion of diverse voices in ALWD’s programming and resources
1. Conference Program Committee: Designs the overall program; selects a plenary speaker or panel; drafts the Call for Proposals; reviews and selects the presentations; organizes the program schedule; notifies the presenters
2. Conference Site Committee: Works with the site host on all aspects of conference details; secures sponsorships
3. Website Committee: Maintains and updates website; provides suggestions to the board on improving the website; investigates existing platform and new platforms for use for an online Legal Communication and Rhetoric: JALWD
4. Survey Committee: Works with LWI on developing, administering, and maintaining the annual legal writing survey
5. New Member Outreach Committee: Welcomes new members to ALWD with events at conferences; assists members in finding ways to become involved with ALWD
6. Blackwell Reception: Works with LWI on organizing Blackwell Reception including location, catering, program, etc.
1. Teaching Grants Committee: Advertises ALWD’s summer grants for supporting development of teaching ideas and explains the process for applying; recommends recipients to the board; monitors recipients’ progress
2. Teaching Workshops Committee: Organizes program; advertises process; helps select speakers
1. Visiting Scholars Committee: Advertises program and process by which ALWD funds an individual scholar’s visit to a school; recommends proposals to the board; works with site hosts as needed
2. Scholars Fora Committee: Advertises program for a small group of scholars to present works in progress led by a mentor; recommends host schools to the board; works with site hosts to organize workshop, including participants and mentors
3. Scholarship Grants: Advertises ALWD’s summer grants for supporting scholarship; recommends recipients to the board; monitors recipients’ progress
4. Publications (other than JALWD): Proposes new publications for board approval and then oversees the development of the publication
5. ALWD Guide Task Force: An on-going commitment to improve and maintain the quality of the ALWD Guide to Legal Citation, including the companion exercises, by working with the publisher and the authors and making recommendations to the Board.
For questions, please contact ALWD President Megan McAlpin at firstname.lastname@example.org
If you're an ALWD member, you can find the Committee Preference Form at https://oregon.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_6njcvtwBTkvXaPX
Tuesday, August 8, 2017
The Association of Legal Writing Directors ("ALWD") has established the Linda Berger Lifetime Achievement Award for Excellence in Legal Writing Scholarship. The award is named for the initial recipient, Linda Berger.
Linda Berger is the Family Foundation Professor of Law at the University of Nevada at Las Vegas. Her research, writing, and teaching converge on the study and practice of legal rhetoric, drawing on cognitive psychology as well as on composition, rhetoric, metaphor, analogy, and narrative theory. She is one of the co-editors of U.S. Feminist Judgments: Rewritten Opinions of the United States Supreme Court (Cambridge 2016), the first volume in an ongoing series.
Professor Berger has been a leader in discipline building and professional development initiatives within the national legal writing community. She served as President of the Legal Writing Institute (LWI) from 2014-16, President-Elect from 2012-14, and a member of the LWI Board of Directors from 2008-11 and from 2012 to the present. Professor Berger was a founder and the long-time editor-in-chief of Legal Communication & Rhetoric: JALWD; served on the editorial board of the LWI Monograph Series for six years; initiated and continues to co-edit the Law & Rhetoric e-Journal on SSRN's Legal Scholarship Network; and was one of the first ALWD Visiting Scholars in Legal Communication & Rhetoric. She also is a former member of the national board of directors of ALWD.
This award will be given every two years at ALWD’s Biennial Conference. This award focuses solely on scholarship. It celebrates those who have written influential articles, books, or essays, and otherwise had a major impact on scholarship, perhaps through making presentations, mentoring, serving on editorial boards of various publications, sponsoring scholarship workshops and fora—virtually everything related to scholarship.
Here is an excerpt of remarks that Professor Wanda M. Temm gave about Linda at the 2017 Biennial Conference last week at the University of Minnesota Law School in Minneapolis:
Without a doubt our rock star in legal writing scholarship, this modest lady, as that is how we all think of her, is humble, relaxed, warm, charming, and humorous—to list only a few of her many characteristics.
Indeed, her prolific work established legal writing within the legal academy as a true discipline with a doctrinal foundation on which to build its own body of scholarly literature.
Moreover, she has been generous in her efforts to support other scholars in the field, leading presentations, and workshops about legal writing scholarship, and helping new scholars find their voice.
There is perhaps no other individual in our community that has had the same profound impact on the discipline of legal writing than our recipient.
Indeed, this person spearheaded the creation of ALWD’s peer-reviewed journal: the Journal of the Association of Legal Writing Directors, now known as Legal Communication & Rhetoric: JALWD.
The ALWD Board of Directors is honored to create and present the 2017 Linda Berger Lifetime Achievement Award for Excellence in Legal Writing Scholarship to none other than Linda Berger.
Congratulations to Linda Berger and to ALWD.
Hat tip to Professor Wanda M. Temm, Clinical Professor of Law Director of Bar Services University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law.
The Central States Regional Writing Conference will be held on Friday, September 15, and Saturday, September 16, at the Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law in Indianapolis. There are 45 individual and panel presentations scheduled over the day and a half on a variety of topics.
The law school is located in downtown Indianapolis only a short walk from the conference hotel, the JW Marriott. Both the law school and the hotel are within walking distance of all downtown locations, including the Indianapolis Zoo, the NCAA Headquarters and Hall of Champions, the Eiteljorg Native American Museum, the beautiful AAA baseball park, the Circle Center Shopping Mall, and a wide variety of restaurants.
To access the conference website and register, please go to https://mckinneylaw.iu.edu/LWIconference/.
To reserve a room at the JW Marriott, please use the conference discount link. The discounted room rate is $169/night. This special rate will not be available after August 15, and the block may fill before August 15.
Hat tips to Joel Schumm, Debby McGregor, Allison Martin, Jim Dimitri, and Cynthia Adams.
IU Robert H. McKinney School of Law
Sunday, August 6, 2017
LRW Professor Julie Spanbauer Named Vice Dean for Academic Affairs of The John Marshall Law School in Chicago
Professor Julie Spanbauer, a lawyering skills professor at The John Marshall Law School in Chicago, has been named as the law school's Vice Dean for Academic Affairs. She had previously served since 2015 as Associate Dean for Faculty Affairs.
After graduating from Valparaiso University Law School, Julie Spanbauer served as a federal judicial clerk for the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Indiana. She also earned an LL.M. from Northwestern University School of Law.
Since joining the John Marshall faculty in 1990, she has published numerous articles in the areas of employment discrimination, constitutional law, and women's issues. She was named a Fulbright Specialist and taught at the Institute of Technology Law, National Chiao Tung University in Taipei, Taiwan.
She is a frequent and popular speaker on various panels, including presentations at legal writing conferences and the Global Legal Skills Conference.
She has lectured in Ireland and in China. She served as the program director for two programs sponsored by the International Law Institute in Washington, D.C. to prepare international LL.M. students to enter law schools throughout the United States. She also served as a member of the board of directors of the Friends of Battered Women and their Children, a not-for-profit organization providing counseling, advocacy, and education services for abused women and their children.
At The John Marshall Law School, Professor Spanbauer teaches Employment Discrimination, Contracts, and Lawyering Skills.
Congratulations to Vice Dean Spanbauer on her new appointment.
LRW Professor Ardath Hamann Named as Associate Dean for Faculty Development at The John Marshall Law School in Chicago
Professor Hamann has been actively involved with John Marshall's moot court program for more than 30 years. As director of Moot Court, she advised the Moot Court Executive Board and Moot Court Council and supervised the Fred. F. Herzog Moot Court Competition. She taught an advanced advocacy seminar for team members and coached countless moot court teams. Many of our readers may have met her at various legal writing conferences over the years or most recently at the Second Biennial Moot Court Conference sponsored by the Legal Writing Institute and hosted at The John Marshall Law School.
Professor Hamann specializes in antitrust law. For six years after graduation from law school, she was a member of the Antitrust Division of the Illinois Attorney General's Office, litigating criminal, civil penalty, and civil treble damage actions in state and federal courts. She has presented papers on current developments in U.S. antitrust law at conferences in the Czech Republic and has conducted training workshops on legal drafting for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.
Professor Hamann also counsels charitable organizations. She has advised and served on the boards of a number of religious and educational institutions.
Professor Hamann joined the faculty of The John Marshall Law School in 1984. She teaches Administrative Law, Antitrust, Corporations, Estates and Trusts, and Lawyering Skills.
Congratulations to Ardath Hamann on her appointment as Associate Dean for Faculty Development at The John Marshall Law School in Chicago.
Wednesday, August 2, 2017
Congratulations to the Georgetown University Law Center, which was selected as the host site for the 2020 Legal Writing Institute Biennial Conference. The anticipated dates of the 2020 LWI conference are July 15-18, 2020.
The 2018 LWI Conference will be held at Marquette University School of Law in Milwaukee, Wisconsin from July 11-14, 2018.
The LWI Biennial Conference is the Papa Bear of all legal writing conferences, one that simply cannot be missed. The 2018 and 2020 conferences mark a return to law school venues (rather than hotels or resorts).
Tuesday, August 1, 2017
Law Library of Congress Seminar on Free Legal Research - Register by August 4th for the Program on August 11th
The American Bar Association Standing Committee on the Law Library of Congress, in cooperation with the ABA Section of International Law and other entities, will offer a free CLE legal research program during the upcoming ABA Annual Meeting in New York. The program will be on Friday, August 11, 2017 from 9:00 to 11:00 a.m. on "How to Conduct Free Legal Research Online." This complimentary CLE program is being graciously hosted by Duane Morris LLP, 14th Floor Boardroom, 1540 Broadway, New York.
TO ATTEND, YOU MUST RSVP BY AUGUST 4, 2017 to to email@example.com.
The Law Library of Congress is the world's largest law library, and this 2-hour program will share with you many of the features of the LLOC that you'll be able to access from almost anywhere in the world. It's sure to be a sell-out program (especially at this price). If you register and cannot attend, please let Jinny Choi know in case there is a waiting list.
Stetson’s Institute for the Advancement of Legal Communication is now in the second year of its project, Teaching Legal Writing: Out of the Box Ideas Inside. The goal of the project is to curate a set of legal writing teaching ideas in a box on your desk and provide related, password-protected materials to you online. This is the project that Kirsten Davis unveiled at the 2016 LWI Conference. To learn more about the project, please click here.
If you already have The Box, Kirsten will send you a new set of teaching idea cards this fall (if she has your contact information, of course). If you need to update your address or if you don't have "The Box," send an email to SendMeTheBox@stetson.edu.
Hat tip (and round of applause) to Kirsten Davis.
Monday, July 31, 2017
At a formal ceremony attended by many dignataries, the Jigme Singye Wangchuck School of Law (JSW Law) in Bhutan presented its first batch of 25 students at its temporary academic campus at Taba, Thimphu on Saturday, July 29, 2017.
The ceremony marked the start of the five-year undergraduate programme in law and the completion of the bridging course that began on July 3, 2017. The Class of 2022 consists of 25 students, who were selected from 499 applicants. The students were chosen according to a process that included of their Grade XII BCSEA national examinations, their score on a custom-designed law school admission test (LSAT), and their score in a personal interview with members of the JSW Law faculty.
There are 13 women and 12 men in the class and they hail from 15 of Bhutan's twenty Dzongkhags. They also represent 19 of Bhutan's 58 Higher Secondary Schools and Central Schools.
The formal opening ceremony was graced by the Law School’s Honorable President, HRH Princess Sonam Dechan Wangchuck. Guests included the Venerable Vairochana Rimpoche and Yonten Lopon, members of the Law School’s Governing Council, officials from the Royal Government of Bhutan, and foreign dignitaries and donors.
The students were presented to the Honorable President, followed by Zhudrey Puensum Tshogpa. The event concluded with Tashi Lebey and the blessing of the campus by the Vairochana Rimpoche.
Upon the Royal Command of His Majesty The King, the nation’s first law school, JSW Law, was founded as an independent, autonomous tertiary educational institution. His Majesty granted the Royal Charter for the institution on February 21, 2015, envisioning JSW Law as a world-class law school that promotes Bhutanese culture, traditions, and customs and complements wider efforts to develop long-term legal capacity and institutions in the Kingdom of Bhutan. JSW Law is supported by the Royal Government of Bhutan, the Government of India, the international law firm White & Case LLP, the U.S.-based Karuna Foundation, and the Austrian Development Agency. The U.S.-based Fulbright Commission has also sent two Fulbright specialists to the campus.
The first-year curriculum includes a course in Legal Composition and Rhetoric, part of a three-semester legal skills program at the new school.
(Adapted from a JSW Law School Press Release).
PHOTO: Legal writing professors David Austin (California Western School of Law) and Mark E. Wojcik (The John Marshall Law School-Chicago) in traditional dress, in a photo taken after the ceremony to formally open the school. Professors Austin and Wojcik are Fulbright Specialists working at the law school until October. Photo by Judy Stark.
Monday, July 24, 2017
The Association of Legal Writing Directors ("ALWD") finished a great conference this past weekend at Minnesota Law School. Congratulations to Professors Megan McAlpin (chair), Anne Mullins (program chair), Tenielle Fordyce-Ruff (site chair), Chris Soper and Brad Clary (site hosts), and the amazing committee of Professors Chris Coughlin, Michelle Falkoff, Ellie Margolis, Bonny Tavares, Rosi Schrier, Tanya Bartholomew, Joe Mastrosimone, Shakira Pleasant, Alyssa Dragnich, Sam Moppett, Norman Plate, Mary Algero, Greg Johnson, Scott Fraley, Anne Ralph, David Kerch, and Amy Vorenburg (board liaison).
Conference photos are available by clicking here. You can also search social media posts for #ALWD2017.
Monday, July 17, 2017
Registration is now open for the Western Regional Legal Writing Conference to be held at Seattle University School of Law on August 25 and 26, 2017. Although there is no registration fee, the organizers need a headcount, so please register here.
The theme for the conference is “connections” including the following:
- connecting your legal writing classes with students' other foundational courses;
- connecting and collaborating with other faculty to improve your students' ability to transfer what they have learned to clinics, externships, and jobs;
- connecting legal writing classwork with clinics or external nonprofits;
- connecting with alumni and practitioners;
- connecting with other legal scholars; and
- connecting with others to help improve legal writing faculty status.
Those themes will be explored in 24 sessions involving presenters associated with 17 law schools across the country. In addition, making the connection to practice and to current events, attendees will hear from Washington State Deputy Solicitor General Anne Egeler, who will give us an insider's view into the Washington v. Trump et al. litigation. Attendees will also hear from local practitioners at the Microsoft Corporation with their views on the skills that law graduates need for successful entry into practice.
Hat tip to Mimi Samuel.
Sunday, July 16, 2017
Scribes--The American Society of Legal Writers--Is Moving Its National Headquarters to The John Marshall Law School in Chicago
Scribes -- The American Society of Legal Writers -- will be moving its national headquarters from Texas to The John Marshall Law School in Chicago. Since 2015, its executive office has been located in Texas at the Texas Tech University School of Law. Before that, it was located in Michigan at the Western Michigan University Thomas Cooley Law School.
The national legal writing organization has strong connections in Chicago to support a successful move to that city. Darby Dickerson, the new Dean of The John Marshall Law School, was the longest-serving President of Scribes. She is now the organization's immediate past president. The current Scribes President is the Honorable Michael Hyman, a Justice on the Illinois Appellate Court and a past president of the Chicago Bar Association. He is also a past president of the Illinois Judges Association and the Decalogue Society. The President-Elect is Professor Mark E. Wojcik of The John Marshall Law School. The editor of The Scrivener, the newsletter for Scribes, is Professor Maureen Collins of The John Marshall Law School. The new Executive Director of Scribes will be Philip Johnson, Student Services Librarian at the Louis L. Biro Law Library of The John Marshall Law School.
Scribes is dedicated to encouraging legal writers and improving legal writing throughout the entire legal community. Founded in the 1950s, Scribes is the oldest organization of its kind. It has almost 2,700 members, including state and federal judges, practicing lawyers, law-school deans and professors, and legal editors. As written in its Constitution, Scribes's goals are:[
- to foster a feeling of fraternity among those who write about the law, and especially among its members;
- to create an interest in writing about the history, philosophy, and language of the law and about those who make, interpret, and enforce it;
- to help and encourage people who write about the law; and
- above all, to promote a clear, succinct, and forceful style in legal writing.
Scribes confers a variety of awards to recognize excellence in legal writing, including awards for books, law review articles, and moot court briefs. It also confers a lifetime achievement award whose recipients include: Federal Circuit Court Judges Richard Arnold, Guido Calabresi, Frank Easterbrook, and Richard Posner; U.S. Supreme Court Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Antonin Scalia, and John Paul Stevens; and the Right Honorable Harry Woolf, former Master of the Rolls and Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales.
Scribes has both individual and institutional members (including law schools and courts). There are also (so far) two Student Chapters of Scribes -- one at Texas Tech University School of Law and the other at The John Marshall Law School. In 2007, Scribes created the National Order of Scribes to honor graduating law students who excel in legal writing. Each year, every law school that is an institutional member of Scribes may nominate law students to be inducted into the National Order of Scribes.
The John Marshall Law School, the new institutional home of Scribes, has long been regarded as having one of the strongest legal writing programs in the United States. The Lawyering Skills Program is chaired by Professor Kim Chanbonpin, the current President of the Legal Writing Institute. Professor Wojcik, the President-Elect of Scribes, is also a member of the Board of the Legal Writing Institute and a past Chair of the Association of American Law Schools Section on Legal Writing, Reasoning, and Research. Professor Maureen Straub Kordesh, another member of the JMLS Lawyering Skills Faculty is also a former board member of the Legal Writing Institute and a former president of the Association of Legal Writing Directors.
Tuesday, July 11, 2017
Monday, July 10, 2017
If you're attending the Legal Writing Institute's Applied Legal Storytelling Conference this week at American University Washington College of Law, we invite your summaries of interesting panels and presentations to share with readers of this blog. We know that you know how to tell stories, so tell us yours!
Congratulations to the conference presenters and organizers.
The Legal Writing Institute New Member Committee and the Association of American Law Schools Section on Legal Writing, Reasoning, and Rearch Outreach Committee have planned a no-host Happy Hour this week in Washington D.C. at Nando’s Peri Peri Tenleytown on Wednesday, July 12 at 5:15 p.m.
Registration for the 2017 ALWD Conference, Acknowledging Lines: Talking About What Unites and Divides Us, will be held at the University of Minnesota Law School in Minneapolis, Minnesota, from July 19-21, 2017. Speaker details and a link to the registration page are available on the conference website.
Sunday, July 9, 2017
The Washburn University School of Law invites applications for the position of Assistant Director of Academic Support and Bar Readiness. This is a full-time, twelve-month, nontenure-track position designed to support the Director of Academic Support and Bar Readiness. (The official job posting can be found by clicking here).
- With respect to the Academic Support program this position will support and/or teach in academic success courses, work one-on-one with students on academic probation or at academic risk to help them develop habits and methods to improve their academic performance, and design and implement periodic assessments of academic support programs to identify program facets that offer opportunities for continuous improvement.
- With respect to the Bar Readiness program, this position’s duties include coordinating and providing instruction during the winter and summer bar preparation initiatives, coaching and supporting students and alumni as they prepare for the bar exams, offering active learning workshops on bar essay writing and on multiple choice test taking skills, and reading and critiquing student practice essays.
The Washburn campus is located in the heart of Topeka, Kansas, blocks from the state capitol. Recently, the Topeka and Shawnee County Library was named the 2016 Library of the Year, the highest honor for libraries in the U.S. and Canada. Topeka has previously been named a Top Ten City in Kiplinger’s magazine. Topeka features affordable housing and beautiful, historic neighborhoods filled with well-maintained parks. It is also the home of the Brown v. Board of Education historical site.
Required Qualifications: Juris Doctor degree from an ABA approved law school, with a strong academic record, and successful completion of a bar exam. Background demonstrating a potential for excellence in academic support. Understanding of legal pedagogy including current trends. Strong oral presentation skills and ability to remediate complex legal rules. Excellent written communication and legal writing skills. Ability to manage multiple tasks and meet deadlines. Demonstrated ability to work with a diverse student body and work collaboratively with faculty and staff. Proficiency with Microsoft Excel and PowerPoint. Must have passed a state or uniform bar exam and hold a current license to practice law.
Preferred Qualifications: Experience running a law school academic support program or other relevant teaching or tutoring experience. Law practice experience. Experience using TWEN, D2L, and Banner.
Application Procedures: Submit a letter of interest, resume, Resume Supplement form (available at //www.washburn.edu/hrforms), copy of unofficial transcript(s) for highest level of postsecondary education (official transcript for all levels of postsecondary education may be requested upon hire), and names and phone numbers of three professional references to firstname.lastname@example.org or to Washburn University Human Resources, 118 Morgan Hall, 1700 SW College, Topeka, Kansas 66621. Applicants are encouraged to submit complete applications by July 17, 2017. Applications will continue to be reviewed until interviews are scheduled.
Salary is upper $60,000 to lower $70,000 commensurate with qualifications. Washburn provides an excellent fringe benefits package. Employment at Washburn University will be conditioned upon satisfactory completion of a background check.
Hat tip to Associate Dean Joseph Mastrosimone.