Southwestern Law School Los Angeles, CA

News Release

October 29, 2004
Justice Kennedy Visits Southwestern Law School

On October 21 and 22, Justice Anthony M. Kennedy of the U.S. Supreme Court came to Southwestern Law School to meet with students and faculty and to serve as the keynote speaker at the law school’s gala celebration that Friday evening.

Students in the First Amendment Seminar and Constitutional Law class were given a rare opportunity to meet with the Supreme Court justice who discussed the Court’s seminal decision in New York Times v. Sullivan (which constitutionalized the law of libel), as well as Branzburg vs. Hayes (in which the Court considered the First Amendment rights of the press to protect confidential sources). Justice Kennedy also addressed the entire student body on Friday morning, sharing a behind-the-scenes view of how the Court functions, and entertaining questions from the audience.

That evening, over 900 guests from southern California's legal, business and arts communities gathered at Southwestern to hear Justice Kennedy and celebrate the completion of the law school’s mid-city campus that includes the renowned Bullocks Wilshire building. KCET's Huell Howser served as master of ceremonies for the event. Through a ten-year, $29 million restoration and adaptive reuse effort, Southwestern has transformed the historic landmark into the heart of its campus that now houses the law school’s state-of-the-art law library and classroom facilities, and the high-tech Julian C. Dixon Courtroom and Advocacy Center. During the ceremony, the law library was officially named the Leigh H. Taylor Law Library, in honor of Southwestern's dean, who spearheaded the acquisition and restoration of the Bullocks Wilshire building. Taylor is currently the longest serving law school dean in the country.