Southwestern is pleased to announce that Professors Austen Parrish, Angela Riley and the Hon. J. Gary Hastings, Ret. have been selected to receive the law school's 2007 Excellence in Teaching Awards.
Professor Austen Parrish, who has taught at Southwestern for five years, was selected for his work as a First-Year Professor.* He teaches Civil Procedure, Public International Law, and International Environmental Law and is the director of the Summer Law Program in Vancouver. Students praised him for "fostering interesting discussions that are engaging and easy to follow. He teaches in a manner that allows students to discern the relevant legal issues." Voters' comments also lauded Professor Parrish's availability to all students, whether or not they are in his class.
Professor Angela Riley, who was given the award for Upper Division Professor, has been teaching at Southwestern for four years. Students said that she "brings her excellent knowledge of specialized areas of law to her classroom by teaching cutting edge legal topics such as Federal Indian Law, and has created a tremendous course - Illiberal Groups in the Liberal State - that is not taught anywhere else in the country." Professor Riley utilizes her extensive knowledge as an attorney, Judge for the Morongo Tribe, and Justice on the Supreme Court of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation of Oklahoma. Students commented that she is "brilliant, kind, and very passionate about the subjects that she teaches."
Hon. J. Gary Hastings, a retired Associate Justice for the California Court of Appeal, Second District, Fourth Division, is also a Southwestern alumnus (class of '72). He has been honored for his work as an Adjunct Professor. He teaches several courses in Trial Advocacy and those who voted for him commented, "His experience as an associate justice is unparalleled." Students also saluted him as "extremely generous with his time and accessible to all his students."
Established in 1997, the Excellence in Teaching Awards reinforces Southwestern's belief that the day-to-day teaching of students is of primary importance. This is the second year the recipients were recognized by the student body through a unique nomination and selection process, in which members of the Southwestern Community submitted names for the First-Year, Upper Division and Adjunct categories. The top nominees were chosen by the Student Bar Association (SBA) Board, and then students voted for each of the winners.
*First-Year Professor denotes one who teaches first-year (or 1L) students.