Southwestern Law School Los Angeles, CA

News Release

April 06, 2010
Negotiation Team Takes Second at National Environmental Law Competition

Southwestern's Negotiation Honors Program had great success at the recent Robert R. Merhige, Jr. National Environmental Negotiation Competition at the University of Richmond (Virginia), where the team of Steven Diaz and Nydia Duenez earned Second Place.

A total of 28 teams competed, representing law schools such as Pepperdine University, Boston College, University of Georgia, Cardozo, Stetson, Regent University, William and Mary and University of Virginia, among others.

(from left) Steven Diaz, Nydia
Duenez, Kyle Marks, Natalie
Weatherford and Dikran Sevlian

In the semifinals, Southwestern's Diaz and Duenez defeated the team from the University of Georgia to make it to the final round, where they competed against the University of Richmond, Regent University, and Cardozo (Yeshiva University), ultimately finishing second to the host school.

With the help of the Southwestern's other competing team of Dikran Sevlian and Natalie Weatherford, they prepared for the final problem, which involved a negotiation between the Army Corps of Engineers and a local environmentalist/developer looking to build a "Wetlands Mitigation Bank" on the Neva River.

"It was amazing to place second at a competition at which we had never competed," said Kyle Marks, Chair of Southwestern's Negotiation Honors Program and coach for the competition. "Both teams worked hard into the night to create winning strategies for the new problem they received for the semi-final round. They also worked through lunch to ensure that Steven and Nydia would be fully prepared for the final round. I'm extremely proud of all of the students, as they represented Southwestern to an amazing degree!"