Law School Newsletter - Raising the bar
July 2013 Make a Gift

Wayne Law News

Students from China visit Wayne Law

A group of students from Beijing Normal University and Zhejiang GongShang University in China visited Wayne Law July 18. The visit -- designed to introduce the students to key lawmaking institutions in Michigan and Washington, D.C., and to stimulate their interest in enrolling in Wayne State’s master of laws programs -- concluded with a campus tour led by the Law School's public services librarian, Michael Samson (above), and a reception at the downtown offices of Miller Canfield.

Wayne Law, ACLU create civil rights clinic

Civil rights law will be the focus of a new clinic for students at Wayne State University Law School, one of the leading public interest law schools in the Midwest. The Civil Rights and Civil Liberties Clinic, a collaborative venture between Wayne Law and the American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan, will allow students to litigate civil rights and civil liberties impact cases before state and federal courts. Michael Steinberg, legal director of the ACLU of Michigan, will teach the clinic as a visiting professor. Steinberg is a 1989 cum laude graduate of Wayne Law.

Bar passage rate even higher after appeals

Wayne State University Law School got good news earlier this year after the latest state bar exams — and, after successful appeals by five graduates, the news is even better. Ninety percent of Wayne Law graduates who took the state bar exam for the first time in February passed — the highest passage rate of any law school in the state. The state average after appeals was 68 percent. Dean Jocelyn Benson said she is encouraged by the good news and remains strongly committed to further improving the rate for all of the school’s graduates.

Patent clinic benefits students, local businesses

The Patent Procurement Law Clinic at Wayne Law gives students interested in patent law a major advantage, according to local attorneys practicing in the intellectual property field. “Wayne Law has the only patent procurement clinic in Michigan, so if you want to be a patent attorney, you have to look at Wayne Law first,” said patent attorney Christopher Darrow, who earned his law degree at Wayne Law in 2000 and was instrumental in developing the patent clinic last year.

Professorís book earning praise worldwide

Wayne State University Professor of Law Brad Roth is winning praise at home and around the world. He recently was awarded a prestigious WSU Board of Governors Faculty Recognition Award for 2013. And in Taiwan recently, Roth drew on his work on recognition of states and governments to wade into one of the most sensitive legal disputes in Asia.

Upcoming Events

LAA Grand Rapids Happy Hour slated from 4 to 7 p.m. Aug. 9

Join us for an Evening at the Ballpark on Aug. 15

A Celebration of the Life of James K. Robinson is set for Sept. 6

More Events

Alumni Accomplishments

Pamela Enslen, '81, resident director of the Kalamazoo office of Miller Canfield, was one of only eight non-governmental organization observers allowed to attend the closed trial proceedings for Khalid Sheik Muhammad, the alleged mastermind of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, and four others accused of being involved with planning the attacks. The proceedings were held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, earlier this year. Enslen attended the trials on behalf of the American Bar Association. The ABA was one of eight non-governmental organizations allowed to attend the hearings for transparency purposes. 

Wayne Law alums captured three of the six spots in the Top Young Lawyers in the July-August issue of DBusiness magazine. Congratulations Amanda J. Pontes (No. 1), William W. Kregel (No. 3) and Jennifer L. Sabourin (No. 4). DBusiness asked more than 18,000 attorneys in metro Detroit to make nominations. Pontes, '06,  is with Bodman, Detroit. Kregel, '04, is with Dykema Gossett, Bloomfield Hills. Sabourin, '99, is with Miller Canfield, Detroit.

Peter Webster, '93, has been appointed chairman of the Board of Ethics by Gov. Rick Snyder of Michigan. The seven-member board serves as an advisory and investigatory committee, which determines the ethical conduct of classified and unclassified state employees and public officers in the executive branch of state government. Webster will serve as chairman of the board at the pleasure of the governor. Webster is a member in Dickinson Wright's Troy office.

Portia Roberson, '93, was appointed by Detroit Mayor Dave Bing as the city's corporation counsel. The appointment was approved by the Detroit City Council and Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr. Roberson will lead the city's Law Department as it provides legal counseling and representation to the executive and legislative branches of cty government, as mandated by the City Charter. Roberson has worked for the U.S. Department of Justice since 2009, when President Barack Obama appointed her to serve as director of the DOJ Office of Intergovernmental Affairs.

More Alumni Accomplishments

Professors in the News

Robert Sedler was a panelist on Fox 2 WJBK-TV show "Let It Rip" on the topic of the Zimmerman trial and racism.

Laura Bartell was quoted in a CNN article titled "Detroit's bankruptcy could spell good-bye for Howdy Doody."

Peter Henning was interviewed on NPR radio program "The Takeaway" for a segment titled "Detroit Bankruptcy Puts Pensions on the Chopping Block."  

John Mogk was quoted in a Detroit News article titled "Ilitch poised to develop entertainment district as well as arena."

Jocelyn Benson was a panelist on the MSNBC TV show "Up with Steve Kornacki" in a segment titled "Detroit and the Story of the Working Class."

More Professors in the News

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