Southwestern Law School Los Angeles, CA

News Release

September 30, 2009
Biederman Institute Executive Board Strengthens Southwestern's Entertainment Industry Ties

Southwestern's Donald E. Biederman Entertainment and Media Law Institute continues to strengthen its Hollywood connections and has brought together prominent attorneys from leading film studios and entertainment law firms to serve on its executive board.

The 16-member Biederman Institute Executive Board plays a critical role in the growth of the internationally recognized Institute. Board members will be helpful in developing opportunities for students to gain industry experience and future job placement, shape and focus course offerings and develop new programming concepts, and expand the Institute's access to speakers and other resources.

Dean Bryant Garth said, "The involvement of these accomplished and highly respected leaders of the entertainment and media industries is what the Biederman Institute is all about - connecting our students and programs with the key people, law firms and studios, and ensuring that our curriculum is on target for preparing our graduates to be effective lawyers in this exciting field."

Board members are also very enthusiastic about their participation. "The Biederman Institute has been providing Southwestern students with outstanding educational and networking opportunities since its inception a decade ago," said Board co-chair Wayne Levin '88, Executive Vice President and General Counsel for Business & Legal Affairs at Lionsgate Entertainment Corp. "Many of us on the Board have worked closely over the years with the Institute, teaching specialized courses and supervising externs, so we see the results first-hand of the rich and rigorous curriculum that this tremendous resource provides. In fact, I have hired a number of externs into permanent positions after graduation," he added. "The Executive Board is working to further expand the opportunities for Southwestern students in the ever-evolving entertainment and media landscape."

One of the Board's more recent efforts has involved the establishment of the new Biederman Scholars Program designed to recognize students' excellence in academic achievement and encourage and assist them in their future career success. The Board works directly with the most promising students each year who are selected as Biederman Scholars and provides them with mentoring opportunities, as well as special externships and placements in entertainment law firms and within major studios.

Co-chaired by Mr. Levin and Thomas Hoberman '75, Partner at Hansen, Jacobson, Teller, Hoberman, Newman, Warren & Richman, L.L.P., the Biederman Institute Executive Board also includes the following members: Jonathan Anschell, Executive Vice President & General Counsel, CBS Television; Miriam Beezy '86, Partner, Foley & Lardner LLP; Jeff Biederman, Partner, Manatt Phelps & Phillips, LLP; Susan Cleary '93, Vice President & General Counsel, Independent Film & Television Alliance (IFTA); Alan Duke '76, Executive Vice President & General Counsel, New Wave Entertainment; Jon Hookstratten '84, Executive Vice President, Fox Broadcasting; Robert Jacobs '92, Partner, Manatt Phelps & Phillips, LLP; Neville Johnson '75, Founding Partner, Johnson & Johnson, LLP; Howard Kurtzman '79, Executive Vice President, Legal and Business Affairs, 20th Century Fox Television; Jeffrey Mausner, Partner, Law Offices of Jeffrey N. Mausner (IP Law); Kelli Sager, Partner/Chair, Media Practice, Davis Wright Tremaine LLP; John Schulman, Executive Vice President & General Counsel (Ret.), Warner Bros.; Steve Strauss '83, Partner, Fulwider Patton LLP; and Liz Weller '76, Vice President & Deputy General Counsel, Turner Broadcasting.