Dennis T. Yokoyama
Professor of Law
B.A., Psychology, 1982, University of California, Los Angeles; M.S., Clinical Psychology, 1987, California State University, Los Angeles; J.D., cum laude, 1990, Loyola Law School; Order of the Coif; Member, California State Bar
Phone: (213) 738-6746
Dennis Yokoyama has always been intrigued by why people behave the way they do. As a result, he earned degrees in psychology and served as a counselor and therapist before pursuing a career in law, a field that he finds "is flush with true tales of human struggle and accomplishment and that empowers its practitioners to help people in profound ways."
"I want to inform and motivate my students, which I believe can best be accomplished through a classroom experience that is interactive, engaging, relevant and enjoyable."
As a law student, Professor Yokoyama was a judicial extern for Judge Ferdinand F. Fernandez of the U.S. District Court, Central District of California. He also served as an articles editor and staff writer for the Entertainment Law Journal. Following graduation, Professor Yokoyama joined the law firm of Paul, Hastings, Janofsky & Walker in Los Angeles, where he worked as an associate with the firm's environmental and commercial litigation practice group.
Professor Yokoyama joined Southwestern in 1992, and three years later was appointed as director of the Legal Research and Writing Program, a position he held for 12 years. Currently, in addition to teaching core courses in the traditional and SCALE programs, he also serves as faculty advisor to the law school's chapter of the Asian Pacific American Law Students Association. Professor Yokoyama's goal is "to teach students the critical thinking and writing skills that will lead them to excel in law school and practice - valuable tools that they can use the rest of their lives." He says, "I want to inform and motivate my students, which I believe can best be accomplished through a classroom experience that is interactive, engaging, relevant and enjoyable." In 2000, Professor Yokoyama was honored with Southwestern's Excellence in Teaching Award, and in 2007, he was named as the Paul E. Treusch Professor of Law.
Beyond the classroom, Professor Yokoyama is a governor of the Japanese American Bar Association (JABA), for which he served as President in 2008. JABA is one of the oldest ethnic minority bar associations in the country. Since it was founded over 30 years ago, JABA has served the legal community and the community at large and provided a vehicle and forum for the unified expression of opinions and positions by JABA upon current social, political, economic, legal or other matters or events of concern to JABA members.
Books and Chapters
EFFECTIVE LAWYERING: A CHECKLIST APPROACH TO LEGAL WRITING AND ORAL ADVOCACY, 2nd ed. (with A. Parrish; Carolina Academic Press, 2012)
EFFECTIVE LAWYERING: A CHECKLIST APPROACH TO LEGAL WRITING AND ORAL ADVOCACY (with A. Parrish; Carolina Academic Press, 2007)
You Can't Always Use the Zippo Code: The Fallacy of a Uniform Theory of Internet Personal Jurisdiction, 54 DEPAUL LAW REVIEW 1147 (Spring 2005)
The Law of Causation in Actions Involving Third-Party Assaults When the Landowner Negligently Fails to Hire Security Guards: A Critical Examination of Saelzler v. Advanced Group 400, 40 CALIFORNIA WESTERN LAW REVIEW 80 (Fall 2003)
Who Owns that Song? 12 TEXAS ENTERTAINMENT AND SPORTS LAW JOURNAL 4 (Fall 2003) (with A. Cyrlin)
Danger Zones, LOS ANGELES LAWYER (January 2002; Feature Article, Real Estate Law)
2000, 2013 and 2015 Excellence in Teaching Award Recipient
Recipient, Lifetime Achievement Award, Asian Pacific American Law Students Association
SOUTHWESTERN APPELLATE ADVOCACY PROBLEM AND JUDGES' GUIDE (1996-2006)
Co-Organizer and Author, CALIFORNIA MOOT COURT COMPETITION (1998; assisted in the creation and coordination of this statewide law school competition and authored the Appellate Problem and Judges' Guide used in the competition)
President, Japanese American Bar Association of Greater Los Angeles (2008 - January 2009, after which he will be the Immediate Past President for 2008)
Executive Committee Member and Governor, Japanese American Bar Association (President-Elect, 2007; Vice President, 2005-2006; Treasurer, 2000 - 2004)
Founding Member, Association of Legal Writing Directors (1995 – present)
Assistant Editor, THE JOURNAL OF THE LEGAL WRITING INSTITUTE (1998 - 2004)