Jacob Haller Named Public Interest Student of the Year

Posted on Categories Marquette Law School, Pro Bono, Public2 Comments on Jacob Haller Named Public Interest Student of the Year

Even before he began law school, Jacob Haller was involved in the kind of public interest work that is at the heart of Marquette Law School’s pro bono efforts. He continued on that path as a law student. Now in his last semester at the Law School, Haller has been named this year’s Outstanding Public Interest Law Student.

Angela Schultz, assistant dean for public service, said that as an undergraduate at Marquette University, Haller worked as an intern at the Milwaukee Justice Center and an intern in the Wisconsin State Public Defender’s office.

As a law student, Haller became involved in many public service opportunities, including the Public Interest Law Society and clinics offering people help with family law and domestic violence problems. Haller won two PILS summer fellowships to do public interest legal work. He is currently co-president of PILS. Schultz said he will graduate in May with honors for completing more than 500 hours of pro bono work. Continue reading “Jacob Haller Named Public Interest Student of the Year”

Give A Warm Welcome To Our February Bloggers

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Please join me in welcoming our two Guest Bloggers for the month of February.

Our Student Blogger of the Month is Samantha Greenberg.  She introduces herself as follows:  “I am from Miami, Florida. Out of high school, I left Miami and moved to Buffalo, New York where I attended Canisius College. Moving to Buffalo, I had never seen snow before, and the two years I attended Canisius College were the two worst winters Buffalo had had in years. After my sophomore year, I transferred to the University of Miami, where I graduated with a Bachelor’s in Sports Administration. During my time in undergraduate studies, I had many opportunities to work in the sports field, ranging from interning at a sports agency, to even being a college mascot. I chose to come to Marquette University Law School because of their prestigious National Sports Law Institute, and I hope to take the knowledge I learn and apply it towards the real world in a career in sports law.”

Our Alumni Blogger of the Month is Lucas Bennewitz.  He is a 2015 Marquette University Law School graduate. Mr. Bennewitz works as an Assistant District Attorney for the Racine County District Attorney’s office and has focused his entire career on litigation since being admitted to the Bar. While at Marquette, Mr. Bennewitz was involved in Moot Court, and the Student Bar Association, and was an editor for the Intellectual Property Law Review.

We look forward to your posts!

Lake Michigan and the Chicago Megacity in the 21st Century

Posted on Categories Environmental Law, Lubar Center, Marquette Law School, Milwaukee, Public, Speakers at Marquette, Water LawLeave a comment» on Lake Michigan and the Chicago Megacity in the 21st Century

I have previously written in this space about the difficult water policy issues facing “megacities,” generally defined as cities with a population of over ten millA photo of the cover of Marquette Lawyerion people. Meanwhile, the Law School, working in partnership with the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, has taken an increasing role and interest in studying various aspects of the “Chicago Megacity,” the region stretching from the Milwaukee area, across metropolitan Chicago, and into northwest Indiana. For example, see hereherehere, and here for discussion of a variety of issues such as economic development, transportation, and education.

We are excited to announce that on April 17, the Law School and the Journal Sentinel will continue those efforts, hosting a conference titled “Lake Michigan and the Chicago Megacity in the 21st Century.” The event is free and open to the public, but advanced registration is required; find out more and register at this link. More details about the conference follow.

Continue reading “Lake Michigan and the Chicago Megacity in the 21st Century”

Welcome to the Line

Posted on Categories Intellectual Property Law, Legal Education, Marquette Law School, Media & Journalism, PublicLeave a comment» on Welcome to the Line

Recently, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) took up and reversed net neutrality.  If you are unfamiliar with net neutrality, it is the principle that Internet Service Providers (ISPs) are not allowed to discriminate against certain users, websites, content, or whatever else.  For example, Spectrum (formerly Time Warner) is not allowed to block its users from or charge them for accessing Facebook.  Or, for a real-life example, Madison River Communications was fined $15,000 by the FCC for restricting their costumers’ access to a rival service. John Oliver explains net neutrality here. (Language warning.)  In a way, you could think of net neutrality as an equal opportunity law for the internet.  Or, at least you could have.  On December 14, 2017, FCC chairman Ajit Pai and the FCC voted to repeal net neutrality, which leaves the internet in the United States in a fairly bad spot.

Luckily, in my opinion, the FCC has a gauntlet of lawsuits to go through now that it repealed net neutrality.  It also seems there is a fair number of people who share my viewpoint.  As it stands, the FCC had something around 22 million complaints filed against its ruling.  FCC Chairman Pai canceled his scheduled appearance at the to the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas due to death threats.  On top of this, the Internet Association is bringing together powerhouse companies to join the fight against the unpopular ruling.  Companies like Google, Amazon, Etsy, and Alphabet have stated they are joining the lawsuit.  The Internet Association’s President and CEO Michael Beckerman stated, “The final version of Chairman Pai’s rule . . . dismantles popular net neutrality protections for consumers.  This rule defies the will of a bipartisan majority of Americans and fails to preserve a free and open internet.”    Netflix even took to Twitter and sent the message, “In 2018, the Internet is united in defense of #NetNeutrality.  As for the FCC, we will see you in court.”  Furthermore, a number of states have come forward stating their opposition to the repeal and have indicated that they, too, will join the fight.

Seeing this net neutrality issue unfold has solidified my choice to attend law school.  Continue reading “Welcome to the Line”

A Reflection upon My Tenth Anniversary of Being a Lawyer

Posted on Categories Alumni Contributor, Marquette Law School, Public1 Comment on A Reflection upon My Tenth Anniversary of Being a Lawyer

Happy 2018!  Since this is my first guest blog, I thought I might introduce myself a bit as a Marquette Lawyer, as the Dean likes to call us.

2018 marks the ten-year anniversary of my graduation from Marquette University Law School, a fact that I am reminded of by the flurry of communications sent by the law school to “Save the Date” for the upcoming tenth reunion in June!  I attended law school as a “non-traditional” student, having graduated from my undergraduate college in 1981. I began as a part-time student, but I switched to full-time for my second and third years once I realized that, if I didn’t goose this along a bit, we would be paying for two children in college on top of my law school tuition!  But, although I started as a part-timer and could have attended the evening classes designed for the part-time students, throughout my tenure at Marquette, I almost always took classes during the day with the more traditional – and by that I mean younger – students.  I did so primarily so I could be home in the evenings with my husband and three children, who were in middle school and early high school.  I wanted to be available for homework and swim meets and choir concerts and school plays and all the other activities attendant to children of that age, and my (then) part-time job was flexible enough for me to attend day classes.

I really enjoyed taking classes with those energetic and earnest 20-somethings, many of whom were in undergraduate colleges and universities just the semester before starting law school.  A story I’ve told often over the years illustrates the age difference between me and my cohort: One of my first semester law school classes was Criminal Law with Professor O’Hear and we were scheduled to take our first midterm exam. I hadn’t taken an exam of any sort since my senior year in college, and I was slightly anxious but, hopefully, prepared.  I sat down in class and turned to my neighboring student, a smart and nice young man named Luke whom I’d sat next to throughout the semester.  I told Luke that I’d realized earlier that morning that it had been 23 years since I’d taken a midterm exam.  Luke’s eyes opened wide, and he exclaimed, “That’s how old I am!”  I laughed (and have enjoyed the memory ever since), but it brought home to me just how long my “pause” had been between college and law school. Continue reading “A Reflection upon My Tenth Anniversary of Being a Lawyer”

Congratulations to the 2018 Jenkins Honors Moot Court Competitors

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The Jenkins Honors Moot Court Competition is the appellate moot court competition for Marquette law students and is the capstone event of the intramural moot court program.  Students are invited to participate based on their top performance in the fall Appellate Writing and Advocacy class at the Law School.  Tsz King Tse is the Associate Justice who is running this year’s competition.

Congratulations to the participants of the 2018 Jenkins Honors Moot Court Competition:

Claudia Ayala Tabares
Katie Bakunowicz
Killian Commers
Be’Jan Edmonds
Torrean Edwards
Emily Gaertner
Olivia Garman
Andrew Goldner
Elizabeth Grabow
Simone Haugen
Alexander Hensley
Zeinat Hindi
Tyler Kongslien
Austin Lower
Scott Lyon
Anna Meulbroek
Anne O’Meara
Sarita Olson
Jehona Osmani
Ian Pomplin
William Ruffing
Andrew Scarpace
Matthew Sowden
Kelsey Stefka
Christina Szocka
Chue Xiong

Welcome to Our January Guest Bloggers

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On this cold Winter’s Day, let’s give a warm welcome to our Guest Bloggers for January.

Our Alumni Blogger for the month is  Pamela M. Heinrich.  Pam serves as General Counsel and Director of Government Affairs to NAFA, the National Association for Fixed Annuities, a national trade association representing the fixed annuity industry.  In addition, she is the Outside Claims Manager for Harley-Davidson Motor Company.

Pam is a 1981 graduate of Ripon College (B.A., English) and a 2008 graduate of Marquette University Law School, summa cum laude.  During law school, Pam served as an associate editor of the Marquette Law Review and as student editor of the Federation of Defense & Corporation Counsel Quarterly.  She also completed internships with the Wisconsin Supreme Court and the Wisconsin Department of Justice – Criminal Appeals Unit.  Prior to joining NAFA, Pam was an associate attorney at Quarles & Brady, practicing in the firm’s Product Liability litigation group.

Pam has been married to Tom for 33 years and together they have three grown children (and a son-in-law!) and a Siberian Husky, named Juno.  Pam enjoys cooking and entertaining (often!), yoga, and sailing.

Our Student Blogger for the month is K.C. Parker.  K.C. is a current 1L who attended a military academy instead of from a high school.  By the age of seventeen he was in the military, and on his way overseas.  After military service, K.C. became a certified law enforcement officer in Wisconsin.  He received his B.S. at the University of Wisconsin – Green Bay in Democracy and Justice Studies, and Economics.  K.C. is currently involved in the Veterans Association and the Business Law Association at Marquette Law School, and has assisted veterans as part of the Estate Planning Clinic.

We look forward to your posts!

Rita Aleman Named Lubar Center Program Manager

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WISN Rita AlemanRita Aleman has been named the program manager of Marquette Law School’s new Lubar Center for Public Policy Research and Civic Education.

Since early 2016, Aleman has been executive producer for “Matter of Fact with Soledad O’Brien,” a Hearst Television weekly political news magazine based in Washington, D.C. Aleman was executive producer for special projects at WISN 12 television in Milwaukee from 2002 to 2016.

In her new role, Aleman will work with colleagues at the Law School to create, organize, and carry out events of the Lubar Center and extend the center’s reach, including an increased presence on the internet. Aleman is scheduled to begin work in January. Continue reading “Rita Aleman Named Lubar Center Program Manager”

New Magazine Focuses on Opening the Door for More Work Addressing Big Questions

Posted on Categories Legal Practice, Marquette Law School, Public, Speakers at Marquette, Wisconsin Supreme CourtLeave a comment» on New Magazine Focuses on Opening the Door for More Work Addressing Big Questions

Marquette Lawyer Magazine Cover Fall 2017The illustration on the cover of the new Marquette Lawyer magazine shows people entering a large door shaped like the letter Q—or a comment bubble.

Consider the door a symbol for big questions—or the information that we might get from others to help answer them. It has been a goal of the public policy initiative of Marquette Law School for more than a decade to engage people in considering many of the major issues that face Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and the world beyond. The Law School does not purport itself to provide the answers, but offers a platform for furthering awareness and knowledge about the questions and ways different people answer them.

A recent $5.5 million gift from Milwaukee philanthropists Sheldon and Marianne Lubar is “opening the door to much more” for the initiative, as the magazine cover says. Now named the Lubar Center for Public Policy Research and Civic Education, the initiative is expanding its scope and offerings. This gift, added to a gift the Lubars made in 2010, has created a $7 million endowment to support the work.

In one article, which can be read by clicking here, the magazine describes the development of the public policy initiative and looks at what lies ahead. A second article, which can be read by clicking here, profiles the Lubars, who have had great impact on the Milwaukee area as business and civic leaders. Continue reading “New Magazine Focuses on Opening the Door for More Work Addressing Big Questions”

Marquette Law Review Article Featured in Prescription Painkiller Exposé

Posted on Categories Congress & Congressional Power, Health Care, Marquette Law School, President & Executive Branch, Public1 Comment on Marquette Law Review Article Featured in Prescription Painkiller Exposé

In cooperation with 60 Minutes, the Washington Post has published a fascinating new story about the behind-the-scenes efforts of actors in the pharmaceuticals business to soften regulatory enforcement at the just the time that the nation’s opioid problems were reaching epidemic proportions. The story would be an engaging read for anyone, but Marquette folks may note a particular point of interest: the Post prominently quotes a forthcoming article in the Marquette Law Review.

According to the Post story, the federal Drug Enforcement Administration has long had authority to block suspiciously large shipments of prescription painkillers that pose an imminent danger to the community. In the late years of the Bush Administration and early years of the Obama Administration, the DEA became increasingly aggressive in using this authority to target businesses that were involved in questionable ways with the distribution of opioids. The Post reports that these businesses pushed back, initially finding some success through lobbying the Department of Justice. However, they seemingly had their greatest success when Congress passed, and President Obama signed into law, changes to the DEA’s enforcement standards and procedures.

This legislation is the subject of the Marquette Law Review piece, authored by John Mulrooney and Katherine Legel. Mulrooney is an administrative law judge with the DEA. Legel, a graduate of Marquette Law School, was a judicial law clerk with the DEA. Of the 2016 law, they write, “If it had been the intent of Congress to completely eliminate the DEA’s ability to ever impose an immediate suspension on distributors or manufacturers, it would be difficult to conceive of a more effective vehicle for achieving that goal.” This and other aspects of the law review article are noted in the Post’s reporting. Student-editors who have been working on the article should feel gratified to see the piece playing such a prominent role in the ongoing efforts of journalists, policymakers, and academics to better understand the multitude of factors that may be contributing to the current opioid crisis.

Falling Leaves, Rising Stress Levels (Redux)

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sidewalk with fall treesFall in Wisconsin is a particularly beautiful time of the year. Crisp morning air, warm if windy afternoons, beautifully colored leaves, all things pumpkin spice. . . . (Okay, pumpkin spice is not exclusive to Wisconsin, but it is very fall-like.)

But law students may not be noticing the crisp mornings or the changing leaves because they’re huddled in the law school or the library or their homes trying to catch up on their class readings and thinking about outlining and worrying about their summer job search. It’s the time of year that law students begin to more acutely feel the stress of law school.

I wrote about falling leaves and rising stress levels exactly six years ago today, and what I said then about law school stressors still holds true today. But this morning I noticed my colleague Rachel Gurvich from University of North Carolina School of Law also posted on the “October slump” in law school, particularly focusing on 1Ls. She offers seven specific tips to help 1Ls get through this hectic time: (1) Understand that law school is a marathon, not a sprint; (2) remember that hard work alone doesn’t necessarily correlate with success; (3) you do you; (4) enjoy activities outside of law school; (5) make some friends in law school; (6) tune out external noise about law school “success”; and (7) talk to your professors.

Professor Gurvich’s seven tips are spot on and deserve a look, so take a break from your work and give her post a read.

And remember, this, too, shall pass.


Coping in Difficult Times

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young man looking stressedOn Monday morning, we awoke to the horrific news of the mass shooting in Las Vegas, which left 59 dead and more than 500 injured. This news came on top of the humanitarian crisis in Puerto Rico following Hurricane Maria, which followed devastation in Florida and Houston caused by Hurricanes Irma and Harvey. Add to these terrible events the dizzying array of national news items that emerge daily from Washington, D.C., and it seems we are continually operating in crisis mode.

Many of our students are undoubtedly personally affected by these events—for example, I currently have several students who have family in Puerto Rico, Florida, and Houston—but even those of us who aren’t directly affected by such events might be feeling overwhelmed.

Continually operating in crisis mode is not a healthy normal state of being. Law school and lawyering are stressful enough without the added stressors of what may feel like a world in crisis. Continue reading “Coping in Difficult Times”