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From the desk of Dean Boise

Another Law Alumni Weekend is in the books, and it was truly memorable! More than 600 alums, faculty, staff, students, and friends attended 16 events across the weekend, featuring 18 faculty presenters, 47 alumni presenters, eight honorees, and six student organizations. Many more alumni joined class reunions this year than in years past, finding Zoom easily accessible and convenient. We hosted two CLE programs and launched three new alumni affinity groups with alumni of our LL.M., Advocacy, and Disability Law and Policy programs.

Whether you attended an event, hosted a get-together, moderated or served on a panel, or engaged with students, you were a big part of the weekend’s—your weekend’s—success. Thank you!

Thanks to the technology—which also enabled us to bring our community together from all over the world—feedback was instantaneous and positive. For instance, of the COVID-19 CLE panel, Rebecca Russo L’05 said, “I think this may have been the best CLE I have attended since graduating. It was so well done!”

If you missed all or any portion of the weekend, please watch the programs on the Law Alumni Weekend website, including my State of the College Address, our annual United States Supreme Court Preview, our panel discussions on the impact of COVID-19 on marginalized populations and the 30th anniversary of the ADA, and our moving Syracuse Law Honors and Alumni of Color awards ceremonies. I encourage you to share them with friends and colleagues.

See you next year for LAW 2021, which will absolutely include virtual components again!


College of Law News


The College has risen to #7 in the nation in the Fordham Law Trial Competition Performance Rankings. Volunteer coaches and judges are key to our amazing results and recognition, and I am deeply grateful to alumni who take time out of their busy schedules to teach our students how to be the best advocates they can be.


I’m also proud to announce that I will serve on a 10-member Advisory Council to govern the newly formed ABA Legal Education Police Practices Consortium, which will create solutions to help improve policing practices in our communities and provide our students with meaningful opportunities to engage in this imperative work.


Our new, robust Diversity and Inclusion webpage has been launched, easily accessed from our home page by clicking the navigation link in the main menu. On these pages, you will find information and resources about D&I initiatives for current and prospective students, as well as faculty and staff. It is also a resource for you to review our programs and efforts. As you read the pages, please forward any ideas or comments to Director of Communications Rob Conrad.


On October 15 and 16, we hosted “Interdisciplinary Approaches to Elder Justice: Unlocking the Potential of Restorative Practices.” Congratulations to Professor Mary Helen McNeal, who led this first-ever conference to bring together experts in elder law and restorative justice, along with more than 160 participants from around the globe. Professor McNeal and her SU collaborators continue to break new ground in this emerging area—receiving grants, publishing scholarship, and working toward a pilot restorative justice project in Syracuse.


The international Externships 10 conference is underway! Now a three-day, virtual gathering, the conference convenes more than 200 participants from the US and Canada, and as far away as Brazil and the Philippines, to explore the present and future of applied learning within the 21st-century law curriculum.


Alumni Engagement


Board chair Bob Hallenbeck L’83 and I are pleased to welcome Rochester real estate attorney Sandra Wolk Gelb L’92 to the Board of Advisors. With nearly 30 years in real estate law, as well as in business, bankruptcy, and higher education law, Sandra brings a wealth of expertise and experience.


Thanks to Peter Su L’94, Chief IP Officer of Moley Robotics and Co-Founding Partner of Radlo & Su, for hosting our San Francisco Regional Council virtual roundtable on “Leadership in a New Diverse Dynamic” on October 6. I was pleased to join SU Trustee Elliott Portnoy ’86, Global CEO, Dentons, and Kathi Vidal ’92, Managing Partner, Silicon Valley Office, Winston & Strawn LLP, for a wide-ranging conversation on how the “new dynamics” of diversity are evolving organizations, law firms, and the economy.

Suffolk County DA

Carey Ng L’02 and colleagues from the Suffolk County DA’s office were guests of the Criminal Law Society on October 6. The seminar on “Prosecuting Narcotics Cases” covered investigative tactics, wiretaps, electronic discovery, search warrants, and “ghost guns,” and included a discussion on careers in this large, busy, and diverse office.


Congratulations to Loyola Law School, who bested 21 other teams to win the second annual Syracuse National Trial Competition held online across October 16 to 18. Thank you to volunteers and supporters of our Advocacy Program—we simply cannot post these successes without your help!


Student News

3Ls Audrey Bimbi and Carly Cazer

Well done to 3Ls Audrey Bimbi (right) and Carly Cazer, who won the 49th Mackenzie Hughes LLP Edmund H. Lewis Appellate Advocacy Competition. The final round on October 1, via Zoom, marked the first-ever virtual moot court competition hosted by the Travis H.D. Lewin Advocacy Honor Society.


In her latest ABA Law Student Podcast, JDi student Meghan Steenburgh speaks with storied attorney Robert Barnett, whose clients have included Alan Greenspan and the Clintons. Together they review Barnett’s career, focusing on his work as practice debate opponent for numerous Democratic presidential and vice-presidential candidates. Well worth a listen!


Faculty & Department News

Peter Blanck portrait

Burton Blatt Institute Chairman Peter Blanck presented BBI’s ground-breaking research on the lack of disability diversity in the legal profession at Reed Smith’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Summit on October 1.


In a recent op-ed for The Washington Post, the latest in a series of media appearances and commentaries, Professor Nina Kohn writes on the challenges nursing home residents face in voting due to “limited mobility, physical infirmity and the restrictive reality of institutional life.” In addition to this high-profile op-ed, Kohn is featured in AARP Magazine, The Detroit News, JAMA Network, The Hill, and TIME.

Scholarship with Impact

Our faculty continues to publish and comment on climate change, election security, and medical civil rights. Please be sure to share media clips and research on social media to help boost the College’s scholarly reputation.

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How You Can Make a Difference

Thank you!

On October 1, Syracuse University held its fifth-annual Boost the ’Cuse Day of Giving. We are grateful to alumni, students, faculty, staff, and friends who once again supported this effort with enthusiasm and generosity.

At this time, our leaderboard shows 344 donors. However, gifts are still being tallied by the University, so we are optimistic that the College of Law will meet its goal of 400 donors. We easily met our matching goal of $10,000. Thank you to the Board of Advisors and the SULAA Board for their matching gift and their continued engagement.

You can make a gift to support our College and students at any time—it’s as easy as clicking on the button below. Thank you!

Give Now

During these uncertain times, we need the Power of Orange more than ever to buoy the spirits of our 2020 grads as they pursue job opportunities. If you are seeking newer grads or have or know of career opportunities, please contact Interim Director of Career Services Sam Kasmarek, and she will connect you with our amazing new alums!


Be on the lookout for information about our annual New York City and California alumni events in January 2021. Join Dean Boise for virtual get-togethers and hear the latest updates about the College.


For Your Calendar

Judge Baker

Join Institute for Security Policy and Law Director the Hon. James E. Baker and Center for Security and Emerging Technology Director Jason Matheny for a virtual symposium on “National Security Law and the Coming AI Revolution” on October 29 at 2 p.m.

Lauryn Gouldin

On October 29 at noon, Professor Lauryn Gouldin will be among the faculty in the NYSBA CLE program “The Legislative Process in NYS: How ‘Revenge Porn’ Became a Crime.”


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 315.443.9532.

Contact us at 315.443.1964 or alumni@law.syr.edu to send us your news. Remember, you can also update your contact information on ’Cuse Community.

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.

You also can connect with me on my own LinkedIn account.

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