2022 Southwestern Homecoming Celebration

Homecoming Celebration - Friday, October 28, 2022 with Southwestern Law School Los Angeles Brand logo and gold motifs

Co-sponsored by the Southwestern Law School Alumni Association Board

Friday, October 28, 2022
1:00–8:30 p.m. 

Southwestern Law School
3050 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90010


Southwestern Law School, in collaboration with the Southwestern Alumni Association Board, is excited to welcome everyone back to campus! It's been far too long, and we hope to reconnect with you and allow you to reconnect with each other, in person. 

Alumni, students, faculty, and staff are invited to attend starting at 1:00 p.m. Adult guests are welcome to attend at 1:00 p.m. Children are invited to attend starting at 4:00 p.m.


Attend one or two dynamic CLE programs:

  1. A Conversation with Neville Johnson ’75 and George Wendt ("Norm Peterson" from Cheers)


    A Conversation with Neville Johnson ’75 and George Wendt

    1:30–2:30 p.m.
    Louis Room (Bullocks Wilshire, Second Floor)
    0.75 CLE Credit/California

     In this unique double-interview program, a leading entertainment lawyer and one of his successful clients will discuss their careers and how lawyers partner with talent to achieve success for both.

    • Presenters:
      • Neville Johnson '75, Senior Partner at Johnson & Johnson, Beverly Hills, and Adjunct Professor of Law, Southwestern Law School
      • George Wendt, Actor, "Norm Peterson" from Cheers


  2. Three Secrets to Growing a Successful Virtual Law Firm


    Three Secrets To Growing a Successful Virtual Law Firm

    2:30–3:30 p.m.
    BW 370
    1 CLE Credit/California

    Discover three secrets that will help you quickly grow a seven-figure virtual law firm from the ground up by using automation, virtual assistants, and top sources to attract and serve new clients. Master skills to effectively and ethically manage your solo law practice, cases, and client trust accounts.

    **Free copies of the book will be provided to attendees. Book signing scheduled after the CLE. 


  3. By the Hoary Hosts of Hoggoth: IP Protection for Superheroes (and Other Fictional Characters)


    By the Hoary Hosts  of Hoggoth:  IP Protection for Superheroes (and Other Fictional Characters)

    3:00–4:00 p.m.
    BW 390
    0.75 CLE Credit/California

    Batman has his Utility Belt and Batcave. Superman has x-ray vision and the ability to "leap tall buildings." And Wonder Woman has her Lasso of Truth and Invisible Jet. But what powers do comic book authors have to protect their intellectual property rights in the fictional characters they create? Join Southwestern Law School Adjunct Associate Professor Stephen J. Strauss as he delves into the history of comic books (and superheroes) and shows how intellectual property law has been used to "pow," "clobber," and "smash" infringing evil doers. 

    • Presenter:
      • Professor Stephen J. Strauss '83


  4. Captivating an Audience in 2022: Storytelling Techniques to Use in the Practice of Law


    Captivating an Audience in 2022:  Storytelling Techniques to Use in the Practice of Law

    3:00–4:00 p.m.
    Louis Room
    1 CLE Credit/California

    Great lawyers are master storytellers. Whether writing to a court or speaking to a jury, lawyers must keep their audience engaged, which can be tough in today’s world of backlogged courts, over-information, and hustle culture.  The speakers will discuss storytelling techniques to keep your audience paying attention and captivated.

    • Presenters:
      • Professor Alexandra D'Italia
      • Adam Belanoff, writer and producer of The Closer and Major Crimes
    Effective Storytelling Techniques in Legal Writing First Slide

    Effective Storytelling Techniques in Legal Writing


This Homecoming celebration will have something for everyone!

Join us for: 

  • CLE presentations
  • Guided Historic Tours
  • High Tea — exclusively for alumni and friends of Southwestern
  • Speed mentoring with students
  • Homecoming Reception — for 21 years old and up (we will have screens up if the Dodgers make the World Series!)
  • Fall Carnival (with fun activities for adults and children)
  • Sunset screening of My Cousin Vinny


SWLAW Homecoming Campus Map 2022

SWLAW Homecoming Campus Map 2022


Schedule of Events

1:00–6:00 p.m.   


Get your name badge, wristband for entry, and food tickets. After checking in, stop in the lobby to watch a short slide show on Southwestern's recent accomplishments and activities.

Bullocks Wilshire Port Cochere (until 4:00 p.m.)

Promenade (starting at 3:30 p.m.)

1:00–3:30 p.m.

High Tea (separately ticketed event with specific time reservations)

Tea Room

1:15–4:30 p.m. 

Guided Historic Tours

Be sure to register for one of these informative and fun tours of the Bullocks Wilshire Building with our fantastic librarians. Be one of the first to see new additions to our Bullocks Wilshire archive.

Bullocks Wilshire Lobby

1:30–2:30 p.m.     

A Conversation with Neville Johnson '75 and George Wendt ("Norm Peterson" from Cheers)

0.75 CLE Credit

Louis Room, Bullocks Wilshire Second Floor

2:30–3:30 p.m.                                                                                                   

Three Secrets to Growing a Successful Virtual Law Firm

Presented by Sam Mollaei '13, Founder and CEO, Legal Funnel

1 CLE Credit

Bullocks Wilshire 370

3:00–4:00 p.m. 

By the Hoary Hosts of Hoggoth: IP Protection for Superheroes (and Other Fictional Characters)

Presented by Professor Stephen J. Strauss '83

0.75 CLE Credit

Bullocks Wilshire 390 

3:00–4:00 p.m.    

Captivating an Audience in 2022: Storytelling Techniques to Use in the Practice of Law

Presented by Professor Alexandra D'Italia featuring Adam Belanoff, writer and producer of Major Crimes and The Closer  

1 CLE Credit

Louis Room

3:00–4:30 p.m.                                                                                                       

The Nickel Club Speed Mentoring with Current Students

Students should sign up for this event via the Career Services Office.

Nickel Club mentors should contact Alumni@swlaw.edu. 

Leigh H. Taylor Law Library First Floor

3:30–6:00 p.m

Alumni Reception

Students, faculty, staff, and guests who are at least 21 are also welcome to attend.

Courtyard at the Student Residences

4:00–6:00 p.m.                                                                    

Fall Carnival

Food, activities, music, and more for adults and children. Also, meet leaders of our Honors Programs and other student organizations.


6:00–8:30 p.m.      

Sunset screening of My Cousin Vinny

Chairs will be provided, but attendees may also bring their own lawn or camping chairs (and blankets) for added comfort.

Basketball Court, south of the Westmoreland Building

**Event times overlap. Choose your own adventure!  

 Speakers & Featured Guests 

Adam Belanoff 

Adam Belanoff headshot

Adam Belanoff, a longtime screenwriter and producer, is best known for his work on The Closer and its spinoff, Major Crimes. He is currently co-executive producer of  Fantasy Island for Sony and Fox Television. Mr. Belanoff’s writing and producing credits include Star Trek: The Next Generation, Wings, Murphy Brown, Partners, Cosby, Titus, What About Joan?, and Judging Amy

In 2017, he received Columbia University's I.A.L. Diamond Award for Achievement in the Arts. For more than 25 years, he has been a mentor for the Blank Theater’s Young Playwrights Festival. He received his B.A. in English from Columbia University and his M.F.A. in Screenwriting from the USC School of Cinema-Television.


Alexandra D'Italia

Professor Alexandra D'Italia Headshot

Professor Alexandra D'Italia is an award-winning writer and former criminal defense appellate attorney. Her fiction and non-fiction have appeared in Underwood PressMeat for Tea, and Gold Man Review, among others. Love Creek Productions staged her short play, The Fix Up, in New York, New York.

Currently, she serves as Director of Southwestern’s Writing Center and Co-Director of the Moot Court Honors Program. In 2020, she founded the Writing Center’s Storytelling Project to teach the power of narrative in the practice of law. Her podcast, Women Bridging the Gap, is a freewheeling conversation in which she and co-host, Afro-Latina Stylist & Powerlifter Lenya Wilson, discuss race and womanhood at the hearth level. Each summer she can, Prof. D’Italia teaches English and creative writing at Jacaranda School for Orphans in Limbe, Malawi, and publishes a literary journal, Jacaranda Writes, highlighting Jacaranda’s budding poets, artists, and writers. 

Click here to view her full bio. 


Neville Johnson '75

Neville Johnson '75 headshot

Neville L. Johnson graduated Phi Beta Kappa from the University of California, Berkeley, and received his law degree from Southwestern Law School in 1975, graduating near the top of his class. He has tried more than 28 civil jury trials and over 70 civil trials and arbitrations without a jury. He is a member of the invitation-only American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA) and has served on the Board of Governors of the Consumer Attorneys of Los Angeles (CAALA). He was Co-Chair of the Entertainment Law Section of the Beverly Hills Bar Association from 2009 to 2011. In 2020, Mr. Johnson and his team secured a verdict in a Right of Publicity case for more than $9 million in damages and more than $7 million in attorneys fees.

Mr. Johnson has represented many well-known celebrities and entertainment concerns. He and his firm have been lead counsel in many class actions, including pioneering class actions in the entertainment industry against the entertainment unions, major record companies, and motion picture companies.

Click here to view his full bio. 


Sam Mollaei '13

Sam Mollaei '13 headshotSam Mollaei, Esq. is a legal disruptor. He pioneered the Virtual Law Firm model, building three multi-million dollar virtual law firms in less than 5 years. As a lawyer, he has generated over 16,000 clients online and gathered over 3,000 5.0-star Google reviews. Mr. Mollaei has also helped thousands of lawyers around the world create their own profitable virtual law firms through his online academy, Legal Funnel. He's on a mission to liberate stressed and overwhelmed lawyers and lead them to freedom by building a thriving virtual law firm.



Stephen J. Strauss '83

Stephen J. Strauss '83 headshot

Stephen J. Strauss is a Shareholder and Co-Chair of Buchalter's Entertainment Industry Group. For more than 30 years, Mr. Strauss has specialized in domestic and international trademark, copyright, and unfair competition matters, including licensing, Internet domain name disputes, and litigation. Mr. Strauss also provides various legal production services for documentary and narrative films and scripted and unscripted television projects.

Mr. Strauss represents internationally recognized celebrities, sports personalities, recording artists, chefs, authors, social media influencers, and media and entertainment companies. He also represents a wide range of diverse clients, including restaurants, clothing and toy manufacturers, and magazine and book publishers.

Mr. Strauss is a member of The Television Academy, the Recording Academy (NARAS), the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA), and the Visual Effects Society, a non-profit professional, honorary society representing visual effects practitioners in all areas of entertainment. He is also an Adjunct Associate Professor at Southwestern Law School. Mr. Strauss lectures widely in the areas of entertainment intellectual property law and celebrity branding. He has lectured before the ABA, INTA, IIPLA, the USC Gould Institute of Entertainment Law and Business, the Beverly Hills Bar Association, the Association of Corporate Counsel, WME, SAG-AFTRA, and the National Association of Schools of Theatre (NAST).

George R. Wendt 

George Wendt headshot

George R. Wendt is an actor and comedian best known for playing Norm Peterson on the television sitcom Cheers (1982 to 1993), for which he earned six consecutive nominations for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series. Wendt has also appeared in the films FletchGung HoDreamscapeHouseForever YoungHostage for a DayMan of the House, and Lakeboat.

Click here to view his full bio. 

 Thank You to our sponsors

Thank you to our sponsors, who made this event possible!


Premium Sponsorship

American Business Bank Logo

Michael Burgis & Associates

Silver Sponsorship

Homecoming Silver Sponsors: Feinberg Mindel Brandt & Klein LLP, Gharibian Law, Hon. J. Gary Hastings, ’72Homecoming Silver Sponsors: Matricardi Law, Panish | Shea | Boyle | Ravipudi LLP, Selarz Law Corp


Brought to you by Southwestern Law Alumni Association.

Southwestern Law School Alumni Association Logo

We can't wait to celebrate with you! Get in on the fun and help us share Homecoming with your friends and family with our free digital assets!


Use #SWHomecoming22 on your social posts and captions. 

The main Homecoming URL is www.swlaw.edu/Homecoming22. Make sure to include this URL in your posts to share this page! 


  • I'm going to #SWHomecoming22! Don't miss out on all the festivities and join me: www.swlaw.edu/Homecoming22. 
  • Come home to Southwestern for #SWHomecoming22! Visit www.swlaw.edu/Homecoming22 for the full list of events! 
  • Hi, Bison! I can't wait to see you at #SWHomecoming22! Sign up for guided historic tours, high tea, CLE panels, and more at www.swlaw.edu/Homecoming22


SWLAW Homecoming Logo
SWLAW Homecoming Logo


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SWLAW Homecoming Instagram/Facebook Graphic


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COVID-19 Protocols

Southwestern will be following public health and safety protocols in place at the time of the event. Should health and safety requirements necessitate, the in-person program is subject to change.

All individuals accessing the Southwestern campus must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19, including the first booster if eligible, and provide proof to Southwestern before accessing campus. Southwestern alumni and guests who are not fully vaccinated, including the first booster, if eligible, may enter campus if they present a negative result from a proctored COVID PCR or antigen test taken within 24 hours of arriving on campus. 

Those who arrive at or after 4:00 p.m. for the outdoor events will not be asked to show a vaccine card or proof of vaccination.

Please refer to our Institutional Policies page for the most up-to-date COVID-19 policies.