Dean's Dispatch for Alumni

From the desk of Dean Boise


A new year brings with it buzzing anticipation of what lies ahead. Do you remember the rhythms, milestones, and emotions of a new year at law school?  As I write, Dineen Hall is once again filled with third year students anticipating with joy the 2018 commencement ceremonies, with trepidation the inevitable bar examinations, and with hopeful excitement the launch of new legal careers. At the same time, 1Ls and 2Ls await externship placements, clinic projects, law review elections, and final exams, while across the nation admitted students look forward with nervousness and pride to matriculation. The atmosphere in Dineen Hall is familiar, as in our student days, which were filled with looming deadlines and a mixture of excitement and dread. It’s the alchemy of time that softens the memory and turns those moments into truly “the best days of our lives”!

The rhythms of our years are much different now than when we were in law school, however, and there is no doubt that the student experience in 2018 differs in many ways from that of years past. But I encourage us all to recall some of these law school milestones and revisit them, with thoughts turned to what they mean for today’s student and tomorrow’s lawyer.

This year, there will be plenty of opportunities for you to continue to advance our mission and our profession. I look forward to working with you in 2018, and I thank you for taking this journey with me, and with all of us at the College of Law—not least our students.


College of Law News

Wohl Family Veterans Legal Clinic Receives NYS Grant

Kudos to Director Yelena Duterte and the Wohl Family Veterans Legal Clinic for their efforts to secure a $50,000 grant from the New York State Division of Veterans Affairs to provide legal services to veterans and their families, and to train law students to be advocates for veterans.

With this grant, the Clinic also will expand its educational outreach to attorneys in the Central New York community in order to broaden the network of legal professionals who can provide specialized pro bono services to veterans. This recognition by the state veterans affairs body is proof once again that the Wohl Family Veterans Legal Clinic continues to make its mark as a premier provider of legal services to our veterans’ community and as a top-notch training hub for law students dedicated to understanding veterans’ legal issues.

Mary Helen McNeal Awarded Grant to Research Restorative Justice for Elder Abuse

The Borchard Foundation Center for Law and Aging has awarded Professor Mary Helen McNeal a grant to assist her interdisciplinary research project entitled “Exploring Restorative Justice as a Remedy for Elder Abuse and Exploitation.”

“The grant will be used to fund a law student Research Assistant, as well as Dr. Maria T. Brown, an Assistant Research Professor in the Aging Studies Institute and faculty member in the David B. Falk College of Sport and Human Dynamics,” explains McNeal. “We will conduct qualitative interviews, produce a summary of relevant literature, and host a presentation of our findings for local services providers and interested University faculty.”

Hank Greenberg L’86 Nominated as President-Elect of NYSBA

College of Law alumnus Henry (Hank) Greenberg L’86 has been nominated by the House of Delegates to be New York State Bar Association President-Elect. Hank will be installed at NYSBA’s annual meeting, which starts on January 22 in New York City. When he takes office in 2019, Hank will be the first Syracuse alum to serve as NYSBA President since M. Catherine Richardson L’77 served in 1996-1997.

This nomination is yet another high achievement in a notable career. Now a Shareholder of Greenberg Traurig LLP, Hank has served as Counsel to then-New York State Attorney General (now Governor) Andrew M. Cuomo; General Counsel for the New York State Department of Health; Chair of NYSBA’s Committee on the New York State Constitution; and Chair of the NYS Third Department Judicial Screening Committee. At his alma mater, Hank is remembered for his presidency of the Law Student Senate (1985-1986) and his membership on the regional championship National Appellate Competition team, among other credentials. The College is deeply proud of Hank’s latest accomplishment. We vouch to do what we can to support him in his new role, and we look forward to working with him to deepen our strong collaboration with NYSBA.

Expanding Career Services Outreach to Alumni

Kelly Brant is on the move and we are fortunate! Recently Assistant Director of Admissions at the College of Law, Kelly has transitioned into her new role as Assistant Director of Career Services. Kelly will coordinate and oversee the office’s on-campus recruiting program and the collection and reporting of ABA-required employment data. She also will serve as our career development alumni liaison. In that capacity, she will be the point-of-contact for all alumni who are ready, willing, and able to engage with Syracuse Law students with respect to their career development.

Based on my interactions with you, I know Kelly will be busy! She also will help facilitate alumni participation in career-related events and programs, and assist alums in filling vacancies in their organizations, whether through internships or full-time positions. Do make good use of Kelly’s time! You can reach her at ktbrant@law.syr.edu or 315.443.1941.

Karima Akins ’17 also has joined the Office of Career Services as Office Coordinator. Karima comes to the College from main campus Career Services, where she worked for the past three years. Karima stands ready to answer your inquiries and place calls to connect you to our mission.

Employment Outcomes & Enrollment: How You Can Help!

In other Career Services news, Stacey Wiley informs me that the Class of 2017 employment rate is 69.6% as of January 2018 for full-time, long-term bar-required or J.D.-advantaged positions.

By comparison, the employment number for the Class of 2016 as of the same time last year was 63.9%. This year’s data is strong—and we are still collecting data for the Class of 2017 via graduate surveys—but it is our goal to surpass the final rate we submitted to the U.S. News & World Report for the Class of 2016 in April 2017, which was 74.1% and our highest ever. Employment is not only a key measure of our success, it is an important data point with which to measure the College’s reputation and ranking.

You can positively impact the lives of our profession-ready graduates, and improve our ranking, by mentoring, networking with, helping to place, and hiring a College of Law graduate. Stacey, Kelly, and the entire Career Services team are happy to discuss how we can help you meet your employment goals. Call the team at 315.443.1941 or email career@law.syr.edu.

Meet Prospective & Admitted Students in Syracuse This Spring

One of the most effective ways of getting our message across is to deliver it through someone who “bleeds Orange”! I encourage you to be as active as your schedule allows in recruiting and welcoming the next generation of Syracuse Law students. One way to assist in our recruitment and retention efforts is to help our admissions staff engage prospective and admitted students at events throughout the spring semester.

If you are in Syracuse and can participate in any of the events below, please let Assistant Dean of Enrollment Management Denée Page know. If you cannot attend one of these events in Syracuse but are interested in connecting with prospective or admitted students—especially where you live or work—let us know. Thank you for helping us attract the highest caliber students from across the nation!

  • January 20, 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.—Prospective Student Open House luncheon, College of Law
  • March 8, 5-7 p.m.—Admitted Student Reception, Downtown Syracuse
  • April 12, 5-7 p.m.—Admitted Student Reception, Downtown Syracuse

Finally, if you know of any prospective students who may be interested in attending law school, please encourage them to contact the admissions office at admissions@law.syr.edu or 315.443.1962. We are always happy to speak to interested candidates and offer them the opportunity to visit Dineen Hall.

Alumni Philanthropy

I hope that by now you have had a chance to read the Giving Book, the second component of your new three-part Syracuse Law magazine. In addition to familiar sections—such as Class Notes, In Memoriam, and the Honor Roll of Donors—the Giving Book features stories of philanthropy and engagement that showcase the many ways our alumni are giving back to their alma mater.

If you haven’t had a chance to see the hard copy magazine, you can leaf through its pages online at this link. Let me reiterate how grateful I am for your generous contributions to our mission. We’ve developed our vision with your input, and you continue to strengthen it with your financial donations and your gifts of time and talent, whether you judge Moot Court, host externs, lecture to a class, network with our students, or hire a graduate. Together, we are preparing our students for a 21st-century practice and making Syracuse stand out as a true innovator in legal education.

Later in the spring, look for the third component of the magazine. The Story Book will include meaningful and entertaining profiles of alumni whose contributions to the legal profession and to the College exemplify “the Power of Orange”! My communications team has lined up some fascinating anecdotes from across the years that are sure to bring our alumni family closer together. Without giving too much away, one of the profiles is of an alumna who during her time in Syracuse quite literally stood out as a member of the Orange Nation!


Students in the News

Externship Placements

I am proud to report on the continued success of our Externship Program, designed to hone the professional skills of our young lawyers. This semester’s placements will provide our students invaluable experience at the heart of the legal profession and of government.

Earlier this month, 14 Syracuse students landed in New York City to launch NYCEx, the latest expansion of the Externship Program. These students are now working full time in various locales including DLA Piper, Hon. Gerald Lebovits, the NYS Attorney General, the Veterans Advocacy Project, and The Montag Group. In DC, another 15 students will be learning their trade in such places as the US Department of Justice’s Office of Legal Policy, FCC Cybersecurity and Communications Reliability Division, US Securities and Exchange Commission, Navy-Marine Corps Court of Criminal Appeals, BakerHostetler, DC Public Defender Service, and US Consumer Product Safety Commission.

In addition, two students are in Philadelphia this semester, filling the PhillyEx pilot program. Both students are working at the Defender Association of Philadelphia, piloting what we hope to launch as a full program in Philadelphia in 2019.  If you are in Philadelphia and interested in participating in the program as a host or guest lecturer, please contact Kim Wolf Price.

Thanks to our alumni, the College’s experiential curriculum grows stronger semester by semester. I thank the following alumni who have so generously agreed to be placement attorneys in New York City and Washington, DC this semester: Kevin Belbey L’16; Ann Marie Buerkle L’94; John D. Curtin L’03; Charles Daly L’00; Jennifer Holtz L’08; Erin Lawless Miller L’10; Hon. Dennis L. Phillips L’81; Salman Ravala L’08; Frank W. Ryan L’95, and Edward Silvera L’11. Special thanks go to Adam Leitman Bailey L’95, for assisting us in developing a number of placements for the NYCEx program.

If you would like to act as a placement host for our Externship Program, please contact Director of Externship Programs Kimberly Wolf Price at kwprice@law.syr.edu or 315.443.4736.


2L Kristina Cervi meets with Attorney General Jeff Sessions on her first day at her DCEx externship placement, the US Department of Justice’s Office of Legal Policy.

Join Us for Externship Opening Receptions and Events Throughout the Semester

Alumni are welcome to join Director of Externship Programs Kim Wolf Price and Faculty Director of Externship Programs Terry L. Turnipseed at opening receptions for NYCEx and DCEx this month, and at externship seminars and other events throughout the semester. Come learn about our program, meet the guest lecturers, mingle with faculty and students, and show the strength of our alumni network!

  • NYCEx Opening Reception, January 25, 6:30 p.m.-8:30 p.m., Lubin House, 11 East 61st Street, New York, NY 10065 (in conjunction with the annual cocktail reception; RSVP to Kristen Duggleby).
  • DCEx Spring Opening Reception, January 29, 6 p.m.-7:30 p.m., Fig & Olive, CityCenterDC, 934 Palmer Alley NW, Washington, DC (RSVP to Lisa Cummings and Terry Turnipseed).
  • NYCEx/SULAA Game Watch Event, February 21, starting at 6:30 p.m., Marshall Street Bar & Grill, 306 E. 49th St., New York, NY 10017 (a fun, casual event to network while watching Syracuse University Men’s Basketball vs. North Carolina, 7:00 p.m. tip-off; RSVP to Kristen Duggleby).

Other DCEx receptions are planned for March 5 and April 23. Watch your email and this Dispatch for details about these and other future events.


Faculty & Department News

Our faculty continues to contribute to important national dialogues. Read the latest from their scholarship in the final weeks of 2017 and throughout the holiday break on disability law, the Mueller Investigation, climate change, and the emerging field of atrocity law …

“Climate Comments” Website Translates Complex Climate Change Policy into Plain Language

Assistant Teaching Professor Emily Brown has published a user-friendly and smart website to raise awareness of, and facilitate access to, complex environmental regulations and proposals, and to inspire individuals to participate in public policy decisions about climate change.

Arlene Kanter Speaks on International Disability Rights at a Northeastern University School of Law Conference

In her talk—“Gendering International Disability Rights”—Kanter recently discussed the role of international human rights law in protecting women and girls with disabilities from violence. Currently on sabbatical, Kanter was a Visiting Scholar at Harvard Law School in the fall and is currently a Lady Davis Fellow at Hebrew University Faculty of Law for the spring semester.  A summary of her scholarly activities during her sabbatical can be found here.

William C. Banks Analyzes Republican Complaints against Author of the “Steele Dossier” on Bloomberg Law

Banks discusses attacks by House Republicans against the FBI and the Russia investigation as GOP lawmakers try to prepare the party for the 2018 midterm elections.

Arlene Kanter Speaks to Associate Press about an Unusual ADA Case

This story—about a non-verbal Maine teenager with autism whose parents want him to carry a recording device to school—has been picked up by more than 150 media outlets across the nation, from the Arizona Sun to the York (PA) Dispatch.

David M. Crane Teams Up with a Newhouse Professor to Teach “Media and Atrocities,” an Interdisciplinary Course Offered for the First Time at Syracuse University

A new Media and Atrocities course examines the critical roles that law, policy, and communications play in ensuring truth-telling and securing justice for victims of atrocities. Professors Ken Harper and David Crane believe it’s the first university course of its kind in the nation.

Alumni Events


In early January, I joined Professor William C. Banks, Director of the Institute for National Security and Counterterrorism, in representing the College and the University on the West Coast. On January 4, Bill and I met with alumni in San Diego, and on January 10, I introduced Bill via video to a joint gathering of College and University alumni in Los Angeles. In LA, Bill gave a “ripped from the headlines” presentation about what experts are calling the “new cold war” with Russia. Representatives from Syracuse University Los Angeles commended the program we helped put together and said it “was a great start to the new year!”

Save-the-Date: Law Reunion 2018!

The 2018 Syracuse Law Reunion will take place between September 28 and 30. We look forward to seeing you at what we hope will be an even bigger and better event that last year’s reunion. Join us for the Law Honors Awards, the football game against the UConn Huskies, and much more. Details to follow.

This year, why not volunteer to be a Class Agent!  As a class representative, you can help spread the word among your classmates—encouraging them to return to their alma mater to celebrate their law school days—and take on other responsibilities that will make the event (your event) a success.  Email Director of Alumni Relations Kristen Duggleby or call her at 315.443.1964.

Call for Nominations: 2018 Law Honors Awards

The Law Honors Committee of the Syracuse University Law Alumni Association seeks nominations for the 2018 Syracuse Law Honors, which will be awarded during Law Reunion in September.

The Syracuse Law Honors are, in effect, your honors.  You have the opportunity to identify and showcase deserving members of your College of Law community. The awards celebrate “distinguished achievements in any field of endeavor” by members of the Syracuse Law family—alumni; current and former faculty and staff; or students, parents, and friends—for their service to the College of Law, the legal profession, Syracuse University, or the world at large.

Nominations may be submitted at this link. Please visit our website for additional information.

Upcoming Alumni Events

Alumni events provide an opportunity for you to experience first-hand the Power of Orange and to network with an incredible, influential network of fellow alumni.

  • New York City, January 25—Join me, area alumni, faculty, and students for the College of Law’s annual cocktail reception at the Lubin House, 11 East 61st Street, from 6:30 p.m.-8:30 p.m. (featuring Dinosaur Bar-B-Que!)
  • Miami, FL, January 30—Michael D. Wohl L’75 and Betty N. Wohl invite you to join us for an Alumni Cocktail Reception at The Capital Grille, 444 Brickell Ave., from 6:30 p.m.-8:30 p.m.
  • San Francisco, CA, February 22—Save the date for the Bay Area Law Alumni Group Launch Event. Keep an eye on your inbox, or email Aaron Tidman L’07 at atidman@mac.com or Kristen L. Duggleby at klduggle@law.syr.edu, for additional information on the group’s purpose and the timing of the launch.
  • Zürich, Switzerland, March 13—Meet and mingle via videoconference and on the ground in Zürich with me and other faculty and staff involved in the College’s new International Tax Law program on “The Evolving Role of International Tax, Transparency, and Tax Equalization.” Marnin J. Michaels L’96, G’96 and I will lead the program and look forward to hosting the alumni social at Baker McKenzie Zurich, Holbeinstrasse 30, Zürich 8034, Switzerland.  For additional information on the event or the program, email Kristen L. Duggleby at klduggle@law.syr.edu.

Click here to R.S.V.P. or register for any of these events.

For More Information

Questions? Please contact Sophie Dagenais, Assistant Dean for Advancement and External Affairs, at sdagenai@law.syr.edu or 315.443.4536, or Kristen Duggleby, Director of Alumni Relations at klduggle@law.syr.edu or 315.443.1964.

Contact us at 315.443.1964 or alumni@law.syr.edu to change your address or to send us your updates!

I’ll keep you updated on our news in future editions of the Dean’s Dispatch, and for those of you who use social media, be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram for timely updates and photographs.

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