California Supreme Court Justice to Speak
The Hon. Marvin R. Baxter, Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of California,
will be the keynote speaker at Southwestern's 92nd Commencement Ceremony to
be held at the Shrine Auditorium on Sunday, May 20, 2007. With a long and distinguished
career in the law, including 25 years in public service, Justice Baxter has
served on the Supreme Court since 1991. He was reelected to a new term in 2002
and currently chairs the Policy Coordination and Liaison Committee for the
Judicial Council of California. He previously chaired the Council's Appellate
Advisory Committee and the California Supreme Court's Building, Official Reports
and Library Committees.
Justice Baxter earned a degree in economics at California
State University, Fresno, in 1962 and was selected as a Coro Foundation Fellow
in Public Affairs
that same year. He completed his J.D. degree at Hastings College of the Law in 1966
and began his legal career as a deputy district attorney, serving in the Fresno
County District Attorney's Office for two years. He went on to practice civil
law for 13 years with the firm of Andrews, Andrews, Thaxter, Jones & Baxter,
and held numerous leadership posts in the Fresno County Bar Association, Fresno
County Legal Services, Inc. (Legal Aid), and the California Young Lawyers Association,
among other organizations. He also served on the board of directors of Hastings
College of the Law. More.
Student Commencement Speaker
Graduating students are invited to apply for the honor of Student Commencement Speaker for the May 20, 2007 ceremony. Candidates must be December 2006, May 2007 or July 2007 graduates in good academic standing. Applications are available in the
Student Affairs Office and are due by Friday, February 2, 2007 at 6 p.m.,
with a draft of the speech, not to exceed 5 minutes. Finalists will be required
to present the speech to the Commencement Speaker Committee.
Audition to Sing the National Anthem
Students are also invited to audition for the honor of singing the National Anthem at this year's Commencement ceremony (candidates must also be December 2006, May 2007 or July 2007 graduates). Audition forms are available in the Administrative Services Office and are due by Thursday, February 15. Auditions will be conducted between February 20 and 23 and applicants should be prepared to sing the Star Spangled Banner either a capella or with an instrumental track (the student is responsible for providing the accompaniment track on cassette or CD two days prior to the scheduled audition). Auditions will be performed before a panel of judges consisting of Southwestern faculty, staff and students. For more information, contact the Administrative Services Office.
Summer 2007 International Law Programs
Southwestern will again offer students the opportunity to study law overseas
this summer through its programs in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Vancouver, British
Columbia, Canada, London, England, and Guanajuato, Mexico. Each program features
international law courses taught in English by leading experts and scholars,
highlighted by visits to courts, law offices, and government agencies, and
social events that explore local areas and culture.
In addition to the program
descriptions, brochures and application forms are available in
the Student Affairs Office and online; brochures for
the London program are also available in the Biederman Institute Office. Questions may be addressed to program directors Professor Silvia
Faerman, Buenos Aires; Professor Austen Parrish, Vancouver; Professor Lon Sobel,
London; as well as the Student Affairs Office.
New e-mail system at Southwestern
On Friday, January 26 at 8 a.m., Southwestern replaced the current e-mail
system with a new, more robust Microsoft Exchange e-mail server. This change
enables Southwestern to offer web-based e-mail service that is far superior
to the current MailManPro. The new service, Microsoft Outlook Web Access (OWA),
is a much more intuitive interface - one that is most likely already familiar to many students. The "Check Your E-mail"
link on the Southwestern website now directs users to the new server at https://exchange.swlaw.edu/exchange. Current usernames and passwords will remain valid. A link to the OWA user
manual is also available on the log-in page. MailManPro will
remain available for viewing old messages until the end of Spring break, April
9. Old messages must be saved before that date, as
they will be unavailable thereafter. Questions may be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org or Computer Services at (213)
738-5776, or drop by the Computer Lab.
Southwestern's new site license with Corel allows students to make a
copy of WordPerfect Office X3 and PaintShop Pro Photo XI for home use. The
educational editions of these programs generally retail for about $90 each.
The installation CDs are available for 3-day checkout from the Law Library Circulation
Desk. Students are authorized to make one copy of the CDs and to install
the software on up to three Windows-based computers in the student's
household. Use of the software is subject to the terms of the End User Agreement
must be accepted during installation. Help is available in the Computer Lab
Southwestern Mourns Death of Evening Student
Mr. Clinton Hare, a fourth-year student in the evening program, has passed
away. A member of Southwestern's Interscholastic Trial Advocacy Program, Clinton
participated in the American Bar Association Labor and Employment Law Competition
and the National Trial Competition. He was
remembered fondly in a special memorial service at Southwestern in January and will be greatly missed by his fellow
program members and friends at the law school.
Hare (second from left) with ITAP Team Advisor Anthony Koutris '96 and members Autumn Puro, Linda K. Bradlyn and Yan Gershfeld
Southwestern Alum on The Apprentice
Southwestern alumna Stefanie Schaeffer '99 is currently sharing the small screen with "The
Donald" on the newest season of The Apprentice: Los Angeles. Schaeffer
graduated in the top 10% of her class from the SCALE program in 1999 and was
also chosen as a Los Angeles Magazine 'Young Rising Star' in 2006 for excellence
in law. When she's not vying to work for Trump, she is a trial attorney for
Stockwell, Harris, Widom, Woolverton and Muehl, one of the largest workers
compensation defense firms in California.
Schaeffer speaking with Professor Karen Smith at a recent SCALE alumni/student networking event
- Lisa Gear - Interim Director, Admissions
- Tamara Moore - Program Administrator, Donald E. Biederman Entertainment and
Media Law Institute
- Mauricio Ortiz - Serials Specialist, Leigh
H. Taylor Law Library
- Lorena Sanchez - Head of Serials, Leigh H. Taylor Law Library
- Anne Wilson - Special Assistant to the Dean
GETTING TO KNOW YOU
Q: What would you like your students to walk away from your classroom
with, if it could only be one thing?
A: You can be a good lawyer if you really want to.
Q: What was the most interesting thing you learned as a Supreme Court
A: I learned that the justices are real people who work very hard at what they
do. They may not get it right every time, but they work very hard at it. When
they put on those Supreme Court robes, they realize wisdom that they may not
have had before.
Q: Describe your responsibilities as a Supreme Court Fellows Commissioner
and secretary of the Fellows Association.
A: As a Supreme Court Fellow, my assignment was to do empirical research at
the Federal Judicial Center. When federal judges had questions about administration,
I would take their calls. Another duty was to take questions from foreign high
court judges and show them the Supreme Court building. I remember the fun of
trying to explain our doctrine of separation of church and state to Indonesian
high court judges! Their question: how many religions did we recognize? I had
to explain that we dealt with the issue in a very different way.
Q: With your extensive research and background in bankruptcy law,
what do you think of The Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection
Act of 2005, which makes it more difficult to declare bankruptcy?
A: It is the best law that money could buy. It is badly drafted at the behest
of the credit card industry. I have little sympathy for the credit card industry.
They hand out cards to college freshman. My daughter's dog was even sent an
application. They charge 31% interest on past due balances. Now, they have
demanded changes in the bankruptcy laws. I am happy to report that bankruptcy
judges tell me that these pernicious new laws have had little impact, other
than to scare people away from filing.
Q: You have a B.A. in Music Theory and play piano. How often do you
play and what is your favorite kind of music?
A: I play and sing as often as I can, and I sang at the Supreme Court
last weekend. I met my husband because I was his piano accompanist, and he
is a wonderful violinist. I love any authentic music, and so I love string
quartets, symphonies, operas, country music, and world music. I hate elevator
music. Students should bring their favorite music around to share. Also, I've
played piano duets with a great student and violin piano duets with another
accomplished student. Anyone who'd like a singer or piano accompanist should
Q: Since you came to Southwestern in 1991, you've taught a wide
range of courses, from Bankruptcy to Contracts to International Finance to
Women & Law
Seminar. What is your favorite subject to teach and why?
A: Teaching law is the best job a person could have. I love teaching all of
my courses. I enjoy teaching SCALE because the students are so quick to pick
up concepts. Teaching Contracts is always a joy because you get to teach first
year law students. Bankruptcy is a great course. Upper class students put together
so many of their course concepts as we study Bankruptcy. Women and Law is a
subject close to my heart. As a woman who was the first woman in a law firm,
the first woman on a teaching faculty, etc., it gives me an opportunity to
share some of my life with my seminar students. The best part of teaching a
seminar is helping the students get their seminar papers published. Last year,
a paper was published by Hatty Yip on the effect of the new Bankruptcy laws
on women. She showed what a terrible effect the new laws (and the old laws)
have had on single mothers.
Q: What is the most important piece of advice you've given to your
A: Do your very best at everything you do. As a lawyer, you will have the trust
of your clients, so practice for that role here at the law school. Your fellow
students are your future colleagues, and your law school is your common bond.
Do some good while you're here!
Q: What is your favorite law-themed novel, movie or television show?
A: I love Gone with the Wind. I grew up in the deep South, and I always
pictured myself as Scarlett O'Hara. I admired her strength and ability to do
whatever needed to be done. She saved Melanie and the baby, her family, and
Tara, her ancestral home. I wanted to save everything too, but I'd have hung
on to Rhett Butler!
Q: What is your favorite memory of law school?
A: Graduation! When I walked across the stage to get my diploma, my two little
girls, age 5 and 7, yelled, "Yea Mom!"
Q: Who are your personal heroes? Who do you admire?
A: I admire Justice Sandra Day O'Connor and Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. They
are my personal friends, and I greatly respect their roles on the Supreme
Court. I also admire their deep friendship for each other, even though they
are from different backgrounds and political parties.
Q: How do you recommend students prepare for your exams?
A: First, brief every case before class. Second, review the briefs 10 minutes
prior to class. Know what class is going to be about. Third, take notes during
class on the same page that you've briefed the cases. Fourth, get in a study
group and work together on a course outline. Talk about the issues. This
is good practice for taking the exam. Fifth, the night before the exam, take
one piece of paper, and write down the big topics that have been covered.
Sixth, sleep. Seventh, look for the big issues on the exam. Eighth, discuss
every fact in the exam question. Ninth, read the exam and the key when it
comes back to you. Learn what you did right and what you did wrong. Move
Q: If you knew you could not fail, what would you do?
A: I would be President of the United States and solve the problems that have
PROFESSOR MICHAEL SCOTT
PROFESSOR BUTLER SHAFFER
- SCOTT ON OUTSOURCING: LAW AND PRACTICE (Aspen Publishers 2006)
- SCOTT ON INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY LAW, 3rd ed. (Aspen Publishers 2006)
PROFESSOR LON SOBEL
- Presentation, "Alternative Medicine Is Libertarian Medicine,"
LewRockwell.com Conference on Revisionist Health and Finances, Foster
- Interviewed regarding marriage and the state, "Charles Goyette Show," KFNX (Phoenix)
- Quoted in "They're not in concert: Wolfgang's Vault site opens a Pandora's box of copyright issue over rock performances," San Francisco Chronicle
Trustee Named General Counsel to Los Angeles World Airports
Southwestern Trustee Kelly Martin has been appointed supervising attorney
for the City Attorney's Airport Division and General Counsel to the Los Angeles
World Airports (LAWA), Los Angeles City Attorney Rocky Delgadillo announced
on January 18. Among her many responsibilities, Ms. Martin will supervise
lawyers and support staff for Los Angeles World Airports - Los Angeles International,
Ontario International, Van Nuys and Palmdale and will be responsible for
all LAWA litigation matters.
Excellence in Teaching Award
The annual Excellence in Teaching Awards recognize distinguished achievement
in teaching by First-Year, Upper Division and Adjunct professors. Students are encouraged to be a part of the process by voting for their favorite
professor in each category. Nomination forms are available in the Student
Affairs Office or the SBA Office and must be submitted to the SBA
Office by Friday, February 23.
Dean Emeritus Taylor Part of Elite Teaching Group
Southwestern continues to build ties with the University of Western Ontario.
The schools have been participating in a formal exchange program for several
years, and now Southwestern Dean Emeritus Leigh H. Taylor is teaching American
Constitutional Law at the University of Western Ontario as part of a special
international group of 12 legal experts and scholars instructing the "January
Term." The Canadian law school offers this one-month intensive class
for the law school's second and third-year students, which enables them to
immerse in one subject while learning from top lawyers and academics from
around the world.
Law Review Symposium to Compare Federal and California Evidence Codes
In 1967, California became the first U.S. jurisdiction to codify its
law of evidence with the implementation of the California Evidence
Code (CEC). Up to this point, the state bar exam has only tested on the Federal Rules of Evidence (FRE), which has been adopted
by a majority of states. However, the 40th anniversary of the CEC coincides
with its inclusion for the first time on the California State Bar Examination.
The Southwestern University Law Review will hold a two-day symposium
titled "Rules of Evidence: FRE V. CEC" on February 2 and
3, 2007 to examine the difference between California and Federal regulations.
Topics covered will include hearsay, character evidence and impeachment,
testimony of experts and issues relating to relevance, competence and
witness statements. Differences in California and federal rulemaking
will also be addressed by leading scholars of the law of evidence from
California and across the country. More.
Journal Symposium to Honor Work of Professor Sullivan
Southwestern Professor Emeritus Lawrence A. Sullivan is best known
for his landmark antitrust treatise, which the U.S. Supreme Court frequently
cites. On Friday, February 23, "Antitrust and Intellectual Property
in Global Context - A Symposium in Celebration of the Work of Lawrence
A. Sullivan" will honor his lasting impact on the legal profession
as a prolific and highly admired legal scholar. Professor Sullivan has authored
numerous articles and chapters on
antitrust, as well as co-authored a revised treatise and a widely-used
antitrust casebook. He recently retired after a career in legal education
that spanned 50 years, teaching at Southwestern and UC Berkeley, Boalt
Hall School of Law.
The symposium, presented by the Southwestern Journal of Law and Trade in the Americas, will focus on antitrust law, with
on its interaction with intellectual property (IP) law. The opening
panel will explore acceptance of antitrust law principles in the developing
world. Subsequent panels will explore antitrust/IP interaction, including
an exploration of that topic in both the United States and the European
Union, and specialized topics such as Walker Process litigation and
metered tying arrangements. Speakers include Professor Eleanor M. Fox
of New York University School of Law and Professor Mark A. Lemley of
Stanford Law School. Among the other distinguished panelists are former FTC
Chairman and now Georgetown Law Professor Robert Pitofsky and a roster
of legal experts from around the world.
Articles written in coordination
with the symposium will be published in the Southwestern Journal of Law and Trade in the Americas. The symposium
will take place from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. in the Bullocks Wilshire Building.
Information on registering for the event can be found online.
California Court of Appeal Hearings On Campus
All students and faculty are invited to attend the hearings of the California Court of Appeal, 2nd District - Division 4 on Thursday, February 8. Cases will be heard throughout the day in the Dixon Courtroom and materials will be available in the library.
Programs Bring Students and Alumni Together
The Development and Alumni Affairs Office has planned several exciting networking events and practical seminars featuring alumni for February and March. Questions and RSVPs can be directed to Joan Bautista in the Development Office.
First Annual "Trial Day"
The Alumni Association is sponsoring two FREE seminars on Saturday,
February 10. "The ABC's of Civil Litigation," being presented from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m., will examine civil litigation, focusing on the pleadings filed at each stage - from complaint to appeal.
From 1 - 4 p.m., "The ABC's of a Criminal Trial" will feature advice from attorneys representing the District Attorney, the Attorney
General, the Public Defender, and the Los Angeles Superior
Court. Lunch will be provided. Students may attend one or both seminars, however, as space is limited in the Julian Dixon
Courtroom, RSVPs are required.
Alumni Resource Network Reception
Members of Southwestern's Alumni Resource Network
will be available to talk informally with students at a reception on Tuesday, February 13 from 5:30 - 7:30 p.m. This is a great opportunity for students to learn about law practice, and a variety of practice areas, including civil litigation,
criminal law, business, entertainment law, and many more. Reservations are mandatory for
the event to be held on the BW 2nd floor.
Inn of St. Ives
The Alumni Association sponsors this special series, which provides opportunities for students to meet, network and discuss ideas with practicing attorneys.
A topic is identified by the host(s) of the dinner and six practitioners
and six students are invited to dine at the law school and engage
in a discussion about the topic. Dinners are held six times a year.
The dates for the remaining Inns this semester are February 22 and March 22. All continuing students are eligible to participate. For more information or to reserve a seat, email Joan Bautista at email@example.com.
Apply for the Alumni Association Scholarship
Scholarships in the amount of $3,000 each will be awarded to two Southwestern students in April 2007. Students with a record of participation in community and/or law school activities, before and/or during their attendance at Southwestern, and those in good academic standing are encouraged to apply. Financial need, as determined by the Financial Aid Office, will be taken into consideration. Graduating students may also apply.
First awarded in 2001, the fund was established by the Alumni Association to recognize Southwestern students for their outstanding service to the law school and community. Interested students should submit a letter explaining their qualifications for the scholarship to Joan Bautista in the Development Office no later than 4 p.m. on Friday, February 16.
Bar Association Fair Offers Networking Opportunity
Southwestern's Twelfth Annual Bar Association Fair, one of the only
programs of its kind at a California law school, will take place on
Wednesday, February 7 at 12:15 p.m. on the Westmoreland Promenade.
The event offers students an important opportunity to network with
lawyer-members about their practice areas and to learn about the benefits
of bar association membership. Representatives from the various Sections
of the Los Angeles County Bar Association and other local bar associations
will be available to talk with students.
Most bar associations have programs designed specifically for current
law students, including scholarship programs and steeply discounted
student memberships. Membership in bar associations allows students
to attend meetings, participate in events, and interact with members
of the legal profession. Some associations even have mentor/mentee
programs. Graduates who have not joined bar associations while
in law school are often precluded from joining until they have passed
the bar exam. This is a must-attend event for all students!
The event will conclude with a drawing for prizes; all attending students
will be eligible. Further information is available through the Career
Services Office or the Student Affairs Office.
More Summer Job Options
Additional interview and networking events for students seeking summer
employment will be held during the spring semester. The Career Services
Office (CSO) encourages students to take advantage of a number of
programs and services, including:
- Public Interest Career Day, February 3 on the UCLA campus, offers
the opportunity to interview and network with various employers
including public interest organizations, law firms, and government
- Entertainment Law Career Day, March 10 at
Southwestern, will offer an opportunity to listen to and network
with a number of entertainment
lawyers. More information will be available in February.
Career Day, in March at Chapman Law School, will offer
an opportunity to network and interview with a variety of government
Spring On-Campus Interview Program (OCIP), February 15-28, features
a number of small to mid-size employers.
- The Alumni Outreach/Spring
Job Fair Reception on April 10 provides a great way to network
with local law firms who may be hiring for the
- Job and volunteer listings compiled in March and April by
the Southwestern Alumni Association, in conjunction with the Career
includes alumni who offer paid and volunteer positions available
through the CSO. Last year, over 100 positions were listed. Binders
CSO and the website, Symplicity, offer updated job listings year-round.
To prepare for all of these opportunities, students are
encouraged to attend the upcoming workshops offered by the Career Services
including "Effective Interviewing Techniques," January 30
at 12:30 and 5 p.m. in W311; February 9 at 12:30 pm in W311. In addition,
students are always welcome to submit a resume to the Career Services
Office for review.
GETTING TO KNOW YOU
"W.A.Y." - Who Are You & Why Are You here?
This Month - Alex Raminfar, Third-Year Evening Student
Alex Raminfar's heavy involvement in law school life is no accident.
The third-year evening student has always believed in the importance of
seizing opportunities, making connections and getting a head start. As
an undergraduate at UC Santa Barbara, he served as Controller for the
Associated Student Body and head manager of the men's basketball team.
"I've always been pretty active. The most important part of education
is taking a proactive role, interacting with students and professors,"
he said. "In law school, it really does kind of open your eyes to more
than just the casebook."
During his second year at Southwestern, Raminfar, 24, was SBA Vice President-Evening.
He was then elected American Bar Association Governor of the 9th Circuit at
the ABA Law Student Spring Meeting and Election last March. "The most
important aspect of my job as the Southern California and Hawaii representative
to the ABA Law Student Division is to stand for the (collective) voice of these
schools and their students," he said. He recognizes that the time he puts
into these efforts will also pay personal dividends. "For me, law school
is all about networking, and this position has given me an incredible opportunity
to make connections."
But his involvement extends beyond law school and its associated activities.
Born and raised in Los Angeles, Raminfar is a first generation American son
of Persian immigrant parents.
He's fluent in Farsi and just returned from a 10-day trip to Israel he attended
as part of a birthright program. He chose the part-time evening program at
Southwestern specifically so he could work during the day and loves his current
job with Warner Brothers Digital Distribution and New Media Clearance in the
corporate legal department. "Any kind of business law that gives you the
ability to counsel interests me. That's why I enjoy it," he said. "In
Entertainment Law it's working for a common goal: getting the movie done, getting
the TV show done, and I want to be a part of it."