October 2020 First Monday
Dear Alumni and Friends,
As we reach the original First Monday and reflect on the life and legacy of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, including her connections to Idaho and our law school, I am struck by the difference one good person can make in this world. Justice Ginsburg’s dedication to fundamental human rights, civility, and equality is an ongoing inspiration for all of us. I am honored to support our students in their efforts to continue her great work, to educate the public, pursue justice, and contribute their time and energy to a representative democracy.
So, let’s start by congratulating our most recent class of graduates, the class of 2020, who endured through their final semester and have succeeded despite the hardships they faced. Forty-nine members of the class of 2020 passed the July Idaho Bar Exam and are ready to serve our state and continue the College’s long tradition of service and collegiality. Despite the uncertainty of taking the exam in a pandemic, the pass rate for our first-time takers was 81.4%, a significant increase over last July and well above the overall pass rate.
Many of our students chose to take the October online bar exam on the 5 & 6, and we’re rooting for them and know they will succeed as well.
Election Law Symposium by the Idaho Law Review and the McClure Center for Public Policy Research
Although free and fair elections might now be considered a hallmark of our representative democracy, ensuring that all citizens can participate equally in our elections is an ongoing effort. It was not until 1870 that the 15th Amendment prohibited disenfranchisement on the basis of race. And it took 50 more years before the 19th Amendment prohibited the same on the basis of sex. In the 1960s, the Supreme Court established the one-person-one-vote-principle, and Congress enacted the Voting Rights Act. On the eve of the 2020 election, we examine American democracy and ask: Where are we now, and where might we be - 4 years, 20 years, 50 years, 100 years, or even 150 years from now? Learn more through the following FREE discussions. Idaho CLE pending.
- American Democracy in 2020 - October 20th 12 - 1p.m. MT, 11a.m. - 12p.m. PT
- Emerging Technologies and Electoral Innovation - October 20th 4 - 5p.m. MT, 3 - 4p.m. PT
- Native American Voting Rights - October 27th 12 - 1p.m. MT, 11a.m. - 12p.m. PT
- New Visions of American Democracy - October 27th 4 - 5p.m. MT, 3 - 4p.m. PT
Students Serve as Poll Workers
Sixty percent of poll workers nationwide are over the age of 60, a demographic more susceptible to COVID-19 than others. Because these poll workers might choose to stay home this year to protect themselves, there is a possibility that in-person voting on Nov. 3rd could be more difficult. Earlier this year, Deputy Attorney General Brian Kane and 3L Danielle Strollo independently suggested that the law school could create a day of service, and excuse students from class, so that students could serve as poll workers. Happy to recognize a good idea when presented to me, I immediately agreed and then volunteered to serve myself. Danielle reached out to county clerks and hosted a kick-off event for students to learn how to participate and earn pro bono credit for volunteering, and we expect to see many students serving as poll workers in the counties surrounding both of our locations. If you are interested in serving as a poll worker, need to register, or want to learn more about the voting process in Idaho, visit https://idahovotes.gov/
Allan G. Shepard Professors
The Allan G. Shepard Endowment was established in the memory and honor of the late Chief Justice, “to enhance the mission and the reputation of the University of Idaho College of Law by providing it the means by which to attract and retain highly distinguished faculty members.” The Endowment directs the Dean, “[to] choose highly qualified persons with records of distinguished service to legal education[.]” This past year has been an incredible challenge, and we could not have managed it without the selfless dedication of many of our faculty and staff. If there were any year to focus on service to the College and to legal education, this would be it. Among all of our selfless faculty who have contributed to our success, three individuals distinguished themselves. Please join me in congratulating this year’s three Allan G. Shepard Professors:
Associate Dean of Students, Moscow and Associate Clinical Professor of Law, Kristina Running, for her tireless work to onboard hundreds of new students to the College of Law, advising individual students on academic plans, and working with the administration and faculty to address COVID-19 logistics. Dean Running is also administering the Student Emergency Fund.
Associate Dean of Students, Boise and Associate Clinical Professor of Law, Katie Ball, for her commitment to the College of Law, advising individual students on academic plans, onboarding new students, opening an additional building in Boise, and addressing COVID-19 logistics. Dean Ball filled the void prior to Dean Running’s return to Moscow and was spent much of last year serving students in both Moscow and Boise.
Associate Professor of Law and Native American Law Program Director Dylan Hedden-Nicely for managing, growing, and serving as faculty advisor to the Native American Law Program. Director Hedden-Nicely recruits students to the University of Idaho and secures outside funding for the Indian Estate Planning Project, providing students with opportunities to gain clinical legal experience while helping tribal members draft wills and protect their family assets.
Please join me in thanking these incredible faculty for their commitment to the College of Law.
100th Anniversary of the 19th Amendment
As we celebrate the centennial of women’s suffrage, the American Constitution Society and Women’s Law Caucus offer the following events to discuss how far we’ve come and how much more work needs to be done:
- 19th Amendment ABA Traveling Exhibit – Masks and physical distancing are required in both locations.
- October 6-11 at the Prichard Art Gallery, 414 S Main St, Moscow, Tues-Sat 10a.m. - 8p.m. and Sunday 10a.m. - 6p.m.
- October 12-16 in the Menard Courtroom, 711 S. Rayburn St, Moscow, Mon-Fri 8a.m. -5p.m. - Experience the new entrance to the law building by entering from Rayburn!
- 19th Amendment Panel Discussion on October 14th at 4:30p.m. MT, 3:30p.m. PT-Learn more about women’s right to vote from this incredible panel of leaders, scholars, historians, and activists that include Susan Ripley President of the Moscow League of Women Voters, Idaho State Senator Cherie Buckner-Webb, University of Idaho Professor Emerita Katherine Aiken, Washington State Supreme Court Justice Raquel Montoya-Lewis, and Dean for Master's Programs and Professor of Sociology at CUNY and Visiting Yale Law Professor Julie Suk. Co-sponsored by the Idaho State Bar, Diversity Section. Idaho CLE pending. Register: https://uidaho.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_tiWdTQsjTf6ZZgyHzDqL4Q
National Pro Bono Week – October 26-31
National Pro Bono Week offers a time to reflect on the significant need for legal services that goes unmet in our communities. The College of Law is committed to instilling a lifelong commitment to pro bono legal service in our graduates. Through our mandatory pro bono program, students provide an average of 8,000 hours of pro bono service each year. This service could not occur without the dedication of attorney supervisors that teach practical skills while modeling a commitment to equal access to justice. To learn more about the pro bono program, visit https://www.uidaho.edu/law/academics/practical-skills/pro-bono.
If you are an attorney that would like student assistance with a pro bono project, contact Professor Kristi Denney at email@example.com or 208-885-7947.