Swearing-in Ceremony for New Members of the California Bar

I was so proud to see a number of my former students get sworn in as new members of the California Bar in the Mission Church on the Santa Clara University campus.  Today’s joining the bar as full-fledged attorneys is the last stage of the transformation they started more than three years ago, when I first met them in my all 2016 1L torts course.  Even though I have been teaching law for more than two decades now and seen many classes of students successfully make this journey, both here at Santa Clara and at Vermont Law School, I am still amazed at the personal and professional growth that students undergo.  Congratulations to all!

Phil Gregory (JD/MBA SCU ’80) Talk about Juliana v. United States

Great inspirational presentation by Phil Gregory (JD/MBA ’80) on his work as co-lead counsel for the Juliana v. United States case, pending in the 9th Circuit now.  Professor Ken Manaster gave really interesting introduction that sought to put the Juliana case into the context of other, more traditional environmental litigation.

For more information about the Juliana case, especially the various court filings, see https://www.ourchildrenstrust.org/juliana-v-us.

Professor Patrice Simms joins Earthjustice as a Vice President for Litigation


This happened a couple of weeks ago, but still a great development.  My good friend Patrice Simms, law professor at Howard University Law School, is joining Earthjustice as a Vice President for Litigation.  Earthjustice is fortunate to get him (though he was already a member of the Board of Trustees and so has stepped down from that role).

Here’s the link to the Earthjustice press release:  http://earthjustice.org/news/press/2017/leading-environmental-attorney-and-legal-scholar-joins-earthjustice

In memory of Janet Reno, U.S. Attorney General 1993-2001

Former U.S. Attorney General Janet Reno passed away earlier today, age 78.  My years as a young Justice Department lawyer, from 1994-1998, were all under her watch, a time that I have many fond memories of.  (I served in the Environment and Natural Resources Division, under AAG Lois Schiffer then.)  Reno set an example of integrity and fairness for all DOJ attorneys, and I was proud to have been a part of DOJ then.

On my last day at the Justice Department (in June 1998), Reno was kind enough to spend a little time with me and my wife Tinling in a private meeting, both to chat and to learn a little about where my next job was going to take me — which happened to be the start of my academic career at Vermont Law School.  I still remember how friendly and warm she was, even though at the time I was just a young and insignificant staff lawyer.  The world is a little poorer without her.

Below is the official photo.  Unfortunately, our own photos of Tinling and I with Reno are somewhere in storage.