April 22, 2019

Archives for February 13, 2014

IAALS: Integrating More Professionalism and Ethics into Law School Curriculum

This post originally appeared on IAALS Onlinethe blog for IAALS, the Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System at the University of Denver, on February 10, 2014.

Alli_Gerkman_bw_2014By Alli Gerkman

In his Voices from the Field interview, Bill Walters, Partner at Heizer Paul and former president of the Colorado Bar Association, suggests that law schools need to expose students to the various career options they have following law school, which extend far beyond the traditional big firm practice of law. For example, dual degree programs, like dual J.D./M.B.A. programs, allow law students to use the skills they’ve learned in combination with business skills to potentially and more successfully run a business after graduating.

As to better preparing law students for practice, Walters suggests that the first year curriculum should remain largely traditional through use of the Socratic method and fundamental courses. However, in the second and third year of law school, professors should use different pedagogical methods to teach students, like experiential course offerings. Walters also underscores the importance of having practicing attorneys teach students.

Finally, Walters advocates for integrating more professionalism and ethics into law school curriculum to help produce law school graduates that are better prepared for the practice of law and serving clients. He suggests that schools need exposure to these issues beyond the Rules of Professional Conduct. By “infusing” the curriculum with ethical issues, students can better understand the issues in the context of practice. Walters suggests that a student who attends a law school that emphasizes professionalism by modeling ethical behaviors will have an advantage interviewing with law firms and will increase the potential for the student to get hired.

Hear more of Bill Walters’ suggestions for reforming legal education in his Voices from the Field interview below.

William E. (“Bill”) Walters, III, has practiced law for more than 36 years in Denver, Colorado. His practice focuses on advising nonprofit organizations, trade and professional associations, and for-profit business entities. Bill also has expertise in antitrust and trade regulation law. 

From 1978 to 1981, Bill was an Assistant Attorney General for the State of Colorado. He was President of the Denver Bar Association from 2001 to 2002 and is a former Chair of the Colorado Lawyers Committee. He was President of the Colorado Bar Association from 2008 to 2009 and served on its Executive Council and Board of Governors for many years. 

Alli Gerkman became the first full-time Director of Educating Tomorrow’s Lawyers, a national initiative to align legal education with the needs of an evolving profession, in May 2013. She joined IAALS in June 2011 as Online Content Manager, developing and managing all IAALS web properties, including Educating Tomorrow’s Lawyers, and became IAALS’ Director of Communications in August 2012. She brings significant professional development experience to the initiative, having spent five years in continuing legal education, first as a program attorney organizing multi-day conferences for a national provider and then as program attorney and manager of online content for Colorado Bar Association CLE. While at CBA-CLE, she developed an online legal resource that was the recipient of the Association of Continuing Legal Education’s 2011 Award of Professional Excellence for use of technology in education. She has written and presented nationally to continuing legal education providers, bar executives, and lawyers. Prior to her work in continuing legal education, she was in private practice.

The opinions and views expressed by Featured Bloggers on CBA-CLE Legal Connection do not necessarily represent the opinions and views of the Colorado Bar Association, the Denver Bar Association, or CBA-CLE, and should not be construed as such.

Call for Nominations for 2014–2015 Denver Bar Association Leadership Positions

The Denver Bar Association Nominating Committee is seeking nominations for the 2014–2015 DBA leadership positions, including President-Elect, First and Second Vice Presidents, three members of Board of Trustees, and 11 members of the CBA Board of Governors. Deadline for nominations is Monday, Feb. 17 at noon. For more information or to submit nominations, contact Dana Collier Smith.

Colorado Court of Appeals: Announcement Sheet, 2/13/2014

On Thursday, February 13, 2014, the Colorado Court of Appeals issued two published opinions and 33 unpublished opinions.

People v. Nagi

Fleury v. IntraWest Winter Park Operations

The summaries for these cases are forthcoming, courtesy of The Colorado Lawyer.

Neither State Judicial nor the Colorado Bar Association provides case summaries for unpublished appellate opinions. The case announcement sheet is available here.

Tenth Circuit: Unpublished Opinions, 2/12/14

On Wednesday, February 12, 2014, the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals issued no published opinions and seven unpublished opinions.

United States v. Johnson

Lykins v. Certainteed Corporation

Smith v. DeVry University

Thornton v. Daniels

United States v. Saavedra-Villasenor

Mitchell v. Weinman

Adviser Dealer Services v. Icon Advisers

Case summaries are not provided for unpublished opinions. However, published opinions are summarized and provided by Legal Connection.

Congratulations to the 2014 DBA Award Winners

The DBA Awards Committee has chosen winners for the following awards: DBA Award of Merit, DBA Young Lawyer of the Year, DBA Volunteer of the Year, Judicial Excellence, Education in the Legal System and Outstanding Programs or Projects. Involvement with the DBA, community contributions outside the bar associations, career history, and accomplishments were all considered in the selection process. The winners listed below are outstanding individuals whom we would like to recognize publicly for their commitment to the legal field and our community. Thank you for inspiring us all!

  • Award of Merit: Richard L. Gabriel,Colorado Court of Appeals
  • Judicial Excellence: Dennis A. Graham,Colorado Court of Appeals
  • Young Lawyer of the Year: Margrit Parker,Kennedy Childs
  • Volunteer of the Year: Ilene Lin Bloom, Ilene Bloom PC
  • Education in the Legal System: Craig Dehning from Skinner Middle School and Theresa Storto from Kunsmiller Creative Arts Academy
  • Projects and Programs: Colorado Lawyers for Colorado Veterans Clinic volunteers

JDF Forms in Domestic and Water Categories Revised

Two revised JDF forms have been released by the Colorado State Judicial Branch in the Domestic and Water categories. The revised Domestic form is JDF 1403I – “Instructions to File a Motion or Stipulation to Modify Child Support” (R2/14), and the revised Water form is JDF 241W – “Application for Simple Change in Surface Point of Diversion” (R1/14). For a complete list of State Judicial’s JDF forms, click here.