Faculty News: December 2013 – June 2014

Faculty News Updates: December 2013 – June 2014

David Groshoff Publishes on Trends in Financial Technology Law

David Groshoff’s article, “Kickstarter My Heart: Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowdfunding Constraints and Bitcoin Bubbles,” appeared last month in the William & Mary Business Law Review. The article describes two new trends in Financial Technology Law (better known as “FinTech” Law). First, the article first analyzes historical ideas of capital, enterprise formation, and behavioral economics. Next, the article inquires why the federal government has paradoxically allowed speculative bubbles to boom and burst in digital assets but prevented another FinTech medium to form–namely, equity crowdfunding–because of intentional administrative agency delays in the face of explicit congressional direction to the contrary. The crowdfunding aspects of Professor Groshoff’s piece are expanded upon briefly in a forthcoming essay invited to be part of the inaugural volume of the Texas A&M Law Review, scheduled to be printed in late June.

Lisa Blasser to Present on Teaching Innovations

On August 5, 2014, Lisa Blasser will be joining a panel that will examine the boundaries between substantive law and bar preparation courses through teaching methodologies, means of assessment, use of technology and incorporation of a variety of bar-directed materials. Her presentation, entitled “Teaching Quality Doctrinal Classes While Simultaneously Preparing Students for the Bar Exam,” will take place at the Southeastern Association of Law Schools (SEALS) Conference, to be held at Amelia Island, Florida.

Eunice Park Writes on Integrating Practical Skills into the Curriculum

The proposed practical skills requirement for pre-admission to the bar may begin to minimize the divide between doctrine and practice, or theory and skill, which has characterized most of legal education in the United States. In her article, “Legal Education: Integrating Practical Skills Into the Curriculum,” published June in Orange County Lawyer Magazine, Eunice Park proposes that the practical skills aspects of lawyering should not now be viewed as a merely technical component that will subsume the abstract conceptualization and critical reasoning skills fundamental to lawyering, and she shares ways in which Western State has succeeded in integrating skills training with doctrinal material in the classroom.

Glenn Koppel Recognized for Leadership on California Civil Procedure

In the spring of 2014, Glenn Koppel received a Certificate of Service from the Chief Justice of California, Tani G. Cantil-Sakauye, for his 13 years on the state’s Civil and Small Claims Advisory Committee. The committee, which has drafted rules for civil litigation in California state court practice, made room for Professor Koppel even though at the time seats were allocated only for judges and practitioners, not academics, due to his early scholarship focusing on California procedure that critiqued the political influence on rulemaking in the legislature. Professor Koppel’s service to the advisory committee was completed in 2013.

Tracie Porter Appointed Chair of National Civil Rights Symposia

The National Bar Association President-Elect Pamela Meanes, a partner at Thompson Coburn of St. Louis, appointed Tracie R. Porter as the National Chair of the Wiley A. Branton Symposiums. Professor Porter is in charge of implementing 4 regional symposiums to be held at St. John’s Law School in Queens, New York, Southern University in Louisiana, University of Arkansas at Little Rock, and our own Western State College of Law during the months of October and November 2014. The Symposiums will solicit speakers and call for papers to be published by the University of Arkansas Law Journal on topics of civil rights.

Lisa Blasser Presents on Teaching and Student Outlining

May 30, 2014, Lisa Blasser presented on the topic of “The Process of Using an Outline to Understand Course Material” at the Association of Academic Support Educators Conference, held at Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law, in Indianapolis, Indiana. The presentation focused on student experiences collected from her recent qualitative phenomenological study, which defines the process that occurs when successful students “understand” course material.

Jennifer Koh Presents on Integrating Skills Into Doctrinal Courses

Jennifer Koh spoke during a plenary session on pedagogy titled, “Rethinking Our Classrooms and Communities” at the biannual Immigration Law Teachers’ Workshop on May 23, 2014 at UC Irvine School of Law. She spoke on integrating practical skills into the immigration law survey course that she teaches at Western State. Professor Koh was joined by Anna Welch (Maine Law), Michele Pistone (Villanova Law), Stella Burch Elias (Iowa Law) and Ragini Shah (Suffolk Law- moderator), who each spoke on a range of innovations they have adopted in teaching immigration law and related courses.

Neil Gotanda Presents on Asian American Studies and the Law at Interdisciplinary Academic Conference

Neil Gotanda presented his paper, “Law and Asian American Studies: Constructing Asian Americans, Limiting and Framing Asian American Studies,” at the annual conference of the Association for Asian American Studies, in San Francisco, on April 19.

Ryan Williams Named to List of “50 Under 50” Outstanding Law Professors of Color

Lawyers of Color named Ryan Williams on a list of “50 Under 50” outstanding law professors of color in their April 2014 Law School Diversity Issue.

Neil Gotanda’s Forthcoming Book on Asian American Studies and the Law Featured at UC Berkeley

Neil Gotanda presented the draft of his book, “Asian Americans, Pacific Islanders, and the Law: A Reader,” at UC Berkeley School of Law on April 15, along with co-authors Bob Chang and Rose Cuison Villazor. The text, which is forthcoming on NYU Press, was the feature of a roundtable presentation co-sponsored by groups from UC Davis King Hall School of Law and Seattle University School of Law, as well as groups from UC Berkeley School of Law. In 2008, the Asian American Law Journal at UC Berkeley Law School created a lecture series, the Neil Gotanda Lecture Series, in honor of Professor Gotanda’s groundbreaking work in the area of Asian American Jurisprudence.

Jennifer Koh Presents on the Role of Law School Clinics in Community Initiatives

From April 27-30, 2014, clinical law professors from around the country gathered at the American Association of Law Schools (AALS) Clinical Conference. Jennifer Koh presented during a concurrent session at the conference entitled, “The Clinician as Part of and Partner with the Community,” which explored the role of clinical law teachers and law school clinics – including the Western State Immigration Clinic – in collaborative lawyering efforts. She was joined by Professors Barbara Hines from the University of Texas, Julie Greenwald Marzouk from Chapman Law School, and Anna Welch from the University of Maine.

Eunice Park Presents and Publishes on Teaching Legal Writing

Eunice Park presented on the topic of practical skills, doctrinal courses, and the role of legal writing, at the Fourteenth Annual Western Rocky Mountain Legal Writing Conference, held at the William S. Boyd School of Law at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, March 28-29.

Professor Park also wrote an article on teaching students to write in plain English, published in Clarity: Journal of the International Association Promoting Plain Legal Language, No. 70, which was issued in March 2014.

Myanna Dellinger Recognized for Work on Energy and Environmental Issues

In April 2014, Myanna Dellinger was elected co-chair of the International Environmental Law Committee of the American Branch of the International Law Association.

In addition, Professor Dellinger’s most recent law review article, “Narrowed Constellations in a Supranational Climate Change Regime Complex: The ‘Magic Number’ Is Three,” was published in Volume 37 of the Fordham International Law Journal.

Professor Dellinger also has been invited to write an article about mining, hydrocarbons and the environment, for the Journal of Law of the Pontifical Catholic University of Peru, by the university’s President of the Law and Society Association.

Dylan Malagrino’s Scholarship on Sports Law Cited in Briefs Submitted to U.S. Supreme Court

The Pacific Legal Foundation and Cato Institute cited and prominently featured Dylan Malagrino’s recent article, “Off the Board: NCAA v. Christie Challenges Congress to ‘Move the Line’ on the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act,” 118 Penn. St. L. Rev. 375 (2013), in the body of their amici curiae brief to the U.S. Supreme Court in support of Petitioners in Christie v. NCAA et al. Professor Malagrino’s article advances the proposition that state governments are both more responsive to the constituencies affected by state-specific policies regarding sports gambling restrictions and more aware of the local conditions that those laws address.

Myanna Dellinger and Stacey Sobel Present on Climate Change

Myanna Dellinger and Stacey Sobel gave a presentation to the newly-formed Environmental Law Society on developing climate change law at the subnational, national and supranational levels, as well as the constitutional implications of such new law, on March 26, 2014. The Western State College of Law ELS is dedicated to providing and promoting a forum for education, advocacy, and scholarship aimed at protecting the environment.

Jennifer Koh Co-Authors Eleventh Circuit Brief on Stipulated Orders of Removal

On March 24, 2014, Jennifer Koh co-authored an amicus brief to the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals in Avila-Santoyo v. Holder, a case involving administrative reopening of a stipulated removal order. Mr. Avila Santoyo had lived in the United States since he was a toddler when, at age 18, he was detained by immigration authorities, told by officers to sign a stipulated order of removal, and was deported without ever seeing an immigration judge. In a North Carolina Law Review article and in an advocacy report released by Western State, Stanford Law School, and the National Immigration Law Center, Professor Koh has criticized the due process implications of stipulated removal orders.

Tracie Porter Provides Leadership in Bar Association and Non-Profit Contexts

Tracie Porter hosted a Bar Prep course, as Chair of the Education Committee of the Black Women’s Lawyers Association of LA, co-sponsored by the Langston Bar Association of LA, on February 1st.

Professor Porter also was recently elected to the position of Assistant Treasurer of The Lullaby Guild, Inc. The Lullaby Guild is one of the oldest and most respected black professional women’s social organizations in the Los Angeles area. Established in 1950, the mission of the Lullaby Guild is to reach out to children and their families at risk with a range of services and resources that ensure every child the opportunity to develop within a safe, healthy, and secure environment.

Jennifer Koh Presents on Christianity and Immigration Law

On February 8, 2014, Jennifer Koh presented a draft of her article entitled, “Love, Grace, and the Immigration Laws” at an academic conference taking place at Pepperdine Law School, sponsored by the Herbert and Elinor Nootbaar Institute on Law, Religion and Ethics. The article examines the relationship between Christianity and the immigration laws.

Tracie Porter Presents and Publishes on Developments in Financial Industry

Tracie Porter published her article, “Pawns for a Higher Greed: The Banking and Financial Services Industry’s Capture of Federal Homeownership Policy and the Impact on Citizen Homeowners,” in the Fall 2013 Hamline Law Review.

Professor Porter also was invited to present her work-in-progress by the Mid-Atlantic People of Color Scholarship Conference (MAPOC) at the University of Baltimore, January 23-25, where over 70 senior and junior scholars attended from across the country. Her work-in-progress is entitled, “The Quagmire of Financial Indebtedness in Residential Mortgage Short Sales Requires a Solution.”

Philip Merkel Cited by California Supreme Court on Disciplinary Actions at California Hospitals

The California Supreme Court has once again cited Philip L. Merkel’s law review article, “Physicians Policing Physicians: The Development of Medical Staff Peer Review Law at California Hospitals,” in one of the high court’s opinions. The article was published in the University of San Francisco Law Review. It discusses substantive and procedural due process requirements hospital medical staffs must follow when attempting to discipline member physicians. The Supreme Court first referenced the article in Mileikowsky v. West Hills Hospital and Medical Center (2009). Recently, the Court cited the article in El-Attar v. Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center (2013). Professor Merkel, who has represented clients in medical staff peer review hearings, intended the article to be a guide for attorneys who practice in the area. The article has been cited in other appellate court opinions, appellate court briefs, and law review articles.

Lisa Blasser Presents on Critiques of Law Review Scholarship

Earlier this year, Lisa Blasser presented, “Scholarship Matters: A Law Review Article Critique” at the West Coast Consortium of Academic Support Professionals Conference, held at the University of San Diego School of Law in San Diego, California.

Jennifer Koh Publishes on Removability in Immigration Law

Jennifer Koh published her law review article, “Rethinking Removability,” in the Florida Law Review at the end of 2013. The article analyzes four areas of emerging immigration law: (1) claims to U.S. citizenship, (2) the categorical approach to determining the immigration consequences of crime, (3) the application of the exclusionary rule in removal proceedings, and (4) the exercise of administrative discretion. Using these four areas of law, the article presents a narrative of “complex removability,” in which removability is both legally and factually complex, as well as subject to change, notwithstanding the temptation in legal and popular discourse to treat removability as simple and settled.

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