Howard University

Faculty HighLights-March 2009

March 2009

Professor Gavil coordinated and authored an introduction to the Second Annual Vinson & Elkins-Howard Law Journal Symposium, which was published at the end of December. The symposium topic is “Civil Rights and Civil Procedure: The Legacy of Conley v. Gibson.” The introduction he prepared details the connection between the 1957 case and the work of Charles Hamilton Houston and his former Howard students, three of whom were on the briefs in the case.

On February 27th and 28th, Professor Gavil attended a conference on “Private Enforcement of Competition Law: New Directions,” which was organized by the Competition Law Center at the George Washington University Law School, Competition Law Center. He served as one of two discussants on the final wrap-up session of the conference.

On March 25, 2009, Professor Gavil will serve as moderator and as a panelist for “Antitrust Fundamentals,” at the 57th Annual Meeting of the American Bar Association, Section of Antitrust Law, in Washington, D.C.

On March 6, 2009, Prof. Ross spoke at a conference at the University of Baltimore School of Law. The conference was titled: Applied Feminism: How Feminist Legal Theory is Changing the Law. Her talk was titled: Submission is not Consent: Unifying Search and Seizure with the Law of Sexual Assault. The key note was delivered by Maya Angelou.

On March 4, Prof. Ross spoke about the Criminal Justice system in New Orleans and the history of HUSL’s involvement in Spring Break legal work in Louisiana during a well-attended student-sponsored event. BET taped the lecture.

On Sunday March 8, Prof. Ross and Prof. Meekins taught a class on skills necessary for those participating criminal justice work in New Orleans over spring break.

Professor Taslitz is pleased to announce that the paperback edition of his book, Reconstructing the Fourth Amendment: A History of Search and Seizure, 1789-1868 (paperback ed. 2009), was released on March 1, 2009.

He has also recently published Confessing in the Human Voice: A Defense of the Privilege Against Self-Incrimination, 6 Cardozo J. Pub. L., Pol’y, & Ethics __ (2009), and Neither Fool Nor Cynic: Jeff Powell’s Happy Constitution, __ Duke L. Mag. __ (2009).

Professor Taslitz has also been elected to a three year term as a member of the Governing Council of the ABA Criminal Justice Section and has agreed to participate in a panel on Cognitive Science, Neuroscience, and Criminal Justice at the upcoming January 2010 AALS Annual Meeting. He will on the date of this faculty meeting be presenting his paper, Judging Jena’s D.A.: The Prosecutor and Racial Esteem, 44 Harv. Civ. Rt.s-Civ. Lib.s __ (forthcoming 2009), at Harvard University Law School as part of a symposium that he co-organized there on the Jena 6 case.

*Professor Taslitz is currently a Visiting Professor at the University of Pittsburg School of Law.

Venable LLP and the HUSL faculty Committee on Judicial Clerkships hosted its first annual presentation on the training and employment opportunities provided to law students who serve as judicial clerks after law school graduation. The event took place on March 10, 2009 at 6:00 pm at the offices of Veneble LLP, 575 7th Street, N.W. The featured speakers were federal District Court Judge Emmet G. Sullivan, and D.C. Court of Appeals Judge Anna Blackburne-Rigsby. The significance of this event is that it targeted Howard Law Journal members in an effort to increase their interest in this most important effort. More than twenty Howard Law Journal members were in attendance.

Professor Worthy is the Chair of the Faculty Judicial Clerkships Committee.

Highlights from the Deans’ Corner

Kurt L. Schmoke
Dean of the Law School
On February 12th, Dean Schmoke was the keynote speaker at the Black History Program sponsored by the Montgomery County Department of Health and Human Services. The theme of the program was, “Heritage and Horizons: The African American Legacy and Challenges of the 21st Century. The Dean was welcomed and introduced by County Executive, Isaiah Leggett.

Dean Schmoke was invited by Professor Charles Ogletree of Harvard University to attend the unveiling of the Charles Hamilton Houston commemorative postage stamp on February 21st at The Zero Arrow Theatre in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The Dean gave brief remarks on behalf of HUSL.

On February 27th, the Dean was the keynote speaker at the 2nd Annual Phi Sigma Pi, Alpha Tau Chapter Endowment Fund Scholarship Banquet. Phi Sigma Pi is a national honor fraternity that acknowledges and rewards the academic accomplishments of local high school students through financial assistance. The banquet was held at the Armour J. Blackburn Center.

On March 7th, Dean Schmoke, along with a small group of students from the law school, attended a reception for Howard University Alumna, Kamala Harris. Ms. Harris is the first female District Attorney for the city of San Francisco and is running for California Attorney General in June 2010.

On March 11th, Dean Schmoke hosted the 6th Annual James M. Nabrit, Jr. Lecture Series. Justice Clarence Thomas gave the Noon lecture. He discussed his book, My Grandfather’s Son. Our James M. Nabrit, Jr. Professor of Constitutional Law, Professor Phoebe Haddon gave the 4:00 pm lecture which was entitled, “Using Keyes to Unlock Opportunities for Rethinking Brown in the 21st Century.” Both lectures were very well attended.

Okianer Christian Dark
Associate Dean for Academic Affairs
On February 9, 2009, Associate Dean Dark was the special guest lecturer before the Board of Directors of the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights under the Law. She gave a presentation on the recent Report of the National Commission on Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity which was submitted to the Obama administration. Dean Dark was a Commissioner on this bi-partisan National Commission which was co-chaired by former HUD Secretaries Cisneros and Jack Kemp.

On February 11, 2009, she gave a lecture on the “Legal Issues & the Health Care System,” as a part of the Bioethics course at the HU Medical School. This course is required for all students enrolled in the Medical School, School of Dentistry, Nursing, Pharmacy and Allied Health Professions.

Recently, Dean Dark was appointed chair of the Specialty Workgroup for the Advisory Board of the Montgomery Cares Program. The Specialty group is concerned with developing polices that will enlarge opportunities for medical specialists to participate in this program.

Associate Dean Dark, who was a member of the National Commission on Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity, gave remarks on the “Fair Housing Implications of the Foreclosure Crisis” at a briefing for Hill staff. Her remarks also included a brief discussion about the link between fair housing and access to education, jobs, transportation and health care. The briefing was sponsored by Democratic Representatives Al Green (TX), John Conyers (MI), Maxine Waters (CA) and Jerry Nadler (NY). This congressional briefing on the “Future of Fair Housing” was held on February 27, 2009, at the Rayburn House Office Building. In addition to Associate Dean Dark, there were presentations by Sara Pratt, Fair Housing Consultant, Phil Tegeler, Executive Director, Poverty & Race Research Action Staff, Stacy Palmer-Barton, Chief of Staff for Representative Mike Turner and Susie Saavedra, Legislative Director for Representative Al Green. Ms. Shanna Smith, President/CEO of the National Fair Housing Alliance moderated the program.