TAHP Team Wins Regional Competition, Heads to Nationals
Southwestern's Trial Advocacy Honors Program (TAHP) team of Ashlee P. Clark (SCALE II), Lynette M. Jones (fourth-year evening), Kris Le Fan (SCALE II) and Giancarlo Recinos (third-year day) won First Place at the Regional ABA Labor and Employment Law Competition in Los Angeles.
As a result of their outstanding performance, the team has been invited to compete at the national competition, which will be held January 29 and 30, 2011, in Los Angeles. Fourteen teams from eight law schools competed at the Los Angeles Regional Competition in November. Southwestern's First Place team defeated competitors from Pepperdine University School of Law, Chapman University School of Law and California Western School of Law before triumphing over a second team from Chapman in the finals.
The case the team argued, Pat Bramble v. Baby Boomer Life Insurance Company, centered on a salesperson suing his former employer for violation of Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act. The plaintiff claimed that he was fired because he had cancer. The defendant contended that the plaintiff was not fired; he was laid off as part of the company's national restructuring plan. The same problem will be argued at the national competition, where Southwestern will be one of eight teams participating. Each team competing at nationals won their respective regional competitions.
"What best helped us prepare for the competition was not being married to our first impression of the case," said Jones, who also serves as Chair of TAHP. "We were flexible and collaborative, and that served us well... Winning the regional was incredible. We were against good, competitive teams. Under pressure, though, our advocates were composed, confident and professional. These qualities were keys to helping our team stand out."
Professor Joseph Esposito, who serves as co-director of TAHP, said that the team put forth an amazing effort throughout the competition. "I had the privilege of watching our team in the semi-final and final rounds," he said. "Their performances as advocates and witnesses were truly flawless. The judges were extremely impressed with our team's poise, confidence and high level of preparation. This was an exciting and well deserved victory for TAHP and Southwestern."