Howard University

Faculty Highlights-January 2007

January 2007

Covering period from December 2006-January 2007

Echols, Marsha
Professor Echols’ law journal article is cited in a recent Health Law Review article. Professor Echols’ article titled, “Expressing the Value of Agro diversity and Its Know-How in International Sales” (2004) 48 How. L.J. 431 at 439-441, is cited at footnote 35 in a Sept. 22, 2006 Health Law Review article.

In addition, Professor Echols and a group of students are editing the papers from October’s World Food Law Symposium. A book that will incorporate those papers, student comments and other information should be published before July.

Gavil, Andrew
On Sunday, December 3, 2006, Professor Gavil was interviewed by the weekly Bloomberg news radio show on law about two antitrust cases argued at the Supreme Court.

Professor Gavil has been serving on a pro bono basis as an advisor to the Antitrust Modernization Commission, which was created by Congress in 2002 to review the federal antitrust laws. See The AMC’s final report is due this spring and Professor Gavil has been assisting in the preparation of sections of the report.

Gilmore, Brian (Supervising Attorney, Fair Housing Clinic)
On December 5, 2006, Professor Gilmore was a presenter at the Mid Atlantic Clinical Works in Progress Series at Georgetown University Law Center.

Professor Gilmore also currently has work in progress is entitled, “The Road to Douglas: Reasonable Accommodations Defense in Landlord Tenant Proceedings.” The work is a personal account of Kriegsfeld v Douglas, a DC Court of Appeals case he worked on before he came to the law school. The case held that tenants suffering from a mental illness even if they lacked expert testimony to prove the specific illness had a right to assert a reasonable accommodations defense in a landlord-tenant proceeding. Professor Gilmore’s work will also discuss how the decision has affected proceedings in the landlord-tenant court here in DC so far.

Leggett, Ike (On Leave)
Professor Leggett is on leave from the law school because he has assumed his duties as the new Montgomery County Executive. Professor Leggett is the first African American to hold that position.

McDougall, Harold
Professor McDougall presented a lecture on logic to the 1L LRRW class during the last Research Lab. He prepared materials and a website for this presentation.

Professor McDougall served on Montgomery County Executive-Elect Isaiah Leggett’s Transition Team in November, facilitating a series of transition team group meetings on the topic of greater government responsiveness and accountability.

In addition, he delivered a paper on November 10 entitled “Hurricane Katrina: A Study in Race, Poverty, and Environmental Injustice” at a conference in Washington D.C. sponsored by the Center on Property, Citizenship, and Social Entrepreneurism (PCSE) of Syracuse College of Law.

Professor McDougall also delivered a paper entitled “Law, Civil Rights and the Black Church,” at the 90th Convocation of the Howard University School of Divinity on November 1. He also attended the CETLA class on using wikis in the classroom in January, and plans to use wikis for group projects in his Property I class and Sustainable Development seminar this semester.

Ross, Josephine
Professor Ross is organizing a lecture featuring Professor Douglas Colbert of the University of Maryland who will be discussing the Katrina Gideon/Interview Project. This lecture will be held on January 22, 2007 at 12:15 p.m.

Taslitz, Andrew
Professor Taslitz has just published three pieces, Is Race a Factor in Convicting the Innocent? and A Grateful Student’s Farewell to Welsh White, both published in the Ohio State Journal of Criminal Law, as well as English Evidence Law Seen Through American Eyes, published in the International Criminal Justice Review. He also presented on “False Friends and Personal Privacy,” at the Criminal Procedure Forum, sponsored by Emory University and the University of Louisville, held in Louisville, Kentucky.

Thomas, Alice (Visiting Professor)
Professor Thomas participated in the 2006 conference for the International Society for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning which was held in Washington, D.C. in November 2006.

Highlights from the Deans’ Corner

Dean Kurt L. Schmoke

  • Dean Schmoke was the keynote speaker at Crowell & Mooring’s diversity workshop for attorneys and staff on November 15, 2006. The Dean, along with HU Trustees and others attended the National Equal Justice Award Dinner on November 16th in New York. The dinner was sponsored by the Legal Defense Fund.
  • The Dean participated as a member of the Rhodes Scholar Selection Committee on November 17th and 18th.
  • Dean Schmoke attended the 21st Annual Olender Awards on December 6th.
  • On December 12th, Dean Schmoke, on behalf of the law school, received special recognition by the New York County Lawyers Association at their 92nd Annual Dinner in New York.
  • On December 15, the Dean hosted the School of Law’s holiday luncheon aboard the Odyssey Cruise ship. During the recent meeting of the American Association of Law Schools, Dean Schmoke was a participant on a panel on public service. The plenary session was held on January 4th.

Associate Dean Okianer Christian Dark

  • Associate Dean Dark was recently appointed to the Diversity Committee of the ABA Section of Legal Education and Admission to the Bar. During the 2005-06 year, the major issues before this Committee were pipeline programs, the revision of ABA Diversity Standards 210-212 and bar passage issues.
  • She was also appointed to a three year term on the AALS Committee on Minority Faculty Recruitment and Retention to the Bar.
  • In December 2006, Associate Dean Dark attended the LSAC Board of Trustees meeting in Santa Barbara, CA.
  • Associate Dean Dark served on Montgomery County Executive-Elect Leggett’s Transition Team in November on the topic of health.
  • She was recently quoted in Diverse Issues in Higher Education in an article on the recruitment of minority faculty for law schools.

More Information- January 2007

“The Details and Acknowledgements”

    Dessert Reception to follow in the President’s Suite. Please RSVP to or call her at 202-806-8067 by January 12, 2007.

  • Professors Black, Francois, Fabrikant and Associate Dean Dark accompanied students from the Civil Rights Clinic to the oral arguments on Parents Involved in Community Schls. V. Seattle Sch. Dist. No. 1 and McFarland v. Jefferson County Pub. Schs. at the United States Supreme Court on December 4th. Some of our students also had a tour of the Supreme Court after the oral arguments. The Civil Rights Clinic filed an amicus brief in support of the respondents in these two companion cases.

  • A National Conference on Environmental Justice will be held at the Law School on March 29-31, 2007. There will be four different breakouts focused on environmental justice issues. The conference will be free to students. More information to follow in future reports.

  • Our Visiting James Nabrit, Jr Constitutional Law Professor for the spring 2007 term is Attorney John Payton who is regarded as one of the premier litigators in this country handling complex civil matters from the trial court to the United States Supreme Court. Mr. Payton was the lead counsel for the University of Michigan cases and represented Richmond before the Supreme Court in Richmond v. Croson. He has filed numerous amicus briefs in the Supreme Court in other civil rights cases. Mr. Payton is currently a partner at Wilmer Hale in Washington, D.C. He will be teaching a course titled “Contemporary Developments in the Constitution and Democracy” in this spring.

  • We are offering a seminar this spring titled “Contemporary Developments in Genetics and the Law” that is supported by the Howard University Fund for Academic Excellence. This proposal was submitted Dr. Perry Payne from the National Human Genome Center at Howard University with significant involvement by Associate Dean Dark. This project represents one of our efforts to collaborate with other parts of the University in supporting interdisciplinary projects.

  • We also have some new seminars this spring offered by members of the full-time faculty. The seminars are: Contemporary Developments in Adoption Law: Theory; Contemporary Developments in Sustainable Development (McDougall); and Contemporary Developments in Terrorism and the Law (Taslitz).

  • The HUSL Graduate Program will hold two events during the spring semester. In February there will be a Graduate Forum, at which two or three LLM candidates will make presentations of their Thesis research. In March there will be a Graduate Program luncheon with a guest speaker. You will receive details later this month.

  • Professors Echols, Francois, and Fabrikant met with representatives of the National Association of Black Farmers to discuss the legal problems faced by the dwindling population of black farmers throughout the country.