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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. Jan. 3, 2013 – Joe H. Ritch (Cumberland School of Law Class of 1975), an attorney with Sirote & Permutt’s Huntsville office, has been confirmed by the Senate to serve on the board of directors of the Tennessee Valley Authority [TVA]. Ritch, who was appointed to the position by President Barack Obama, becomes only the second Alabamian to be appointed to the board in the TVA’s 79-year history.
Ritch has been active in Huntsville economic development for more than three decades and is the longtime chairman of the Tennessee Valley Base Realignment and Closure Commission (BRAC). Under Ritch's leadership, the Tennessee Valley BRAC committee successfully marketed Redstone Arsenal as a destination for military commands designated for relocation. Thousands of jobs have moved to the North Alabama and Southern Tennessee region because of the relocations.
Given the fact that I am old, I have seen much national tragedy – the assassination of John F. Kennedy, Bobby Kennedy and Martin Luther King, the Oklahoma City Courthouse bombing, the 9-11 attacks to name a few. None of these compare to what happened in Newtown, Connecticut on Friday. I still cannot fathom the horror of that incident.
It really makes whatever season’s greeting we send you at this time very hollow sounding. We can only hope that out of all of this will come a national dialogue on how we can prevent such a tragedy from happening again.
This year, Christmas came early for two teenagers in the Court Appointed Special Advocates [CASA] program. Twin sisters were selected by Cumberland School of Law’s Public Interest & Community Service Organization to receive a special Christmas gift.
Los Angeles, California: On the weekend of November 17, 2012, the Eleventh Annual National Civil Trial Competition [NCTC] was held in Los Angeles, Calif., and Cumberland School of Law’s team finished third overall. At this competition, the law school’s team won the Professionalism and Ethical Lawyering Award. This is the second time in the three years since NCTC has awarded the Professionalism and Ethical Lawyering Award that Cumberland School of Law has won the award.
On Thursday, November 15, 2012, Professor Brad Bishop appeared on “Talk of the Nation,” a National Public Radio [NPR] program hosted by Neal Conan.
Bishop and Wall Street Journal reporter, Ann Zimmerman, were guests on a show devoted to the Law of Shoplifting. Bishop has authored two books on the subject, one written for Alabama lawyers and retail merchants. His second shoplifting book analyzed the criminal and civil laws affecting shoplifting in every state.
The Law School Remembers an Outstanding Alumnus, Jere White Jr., with the Jere White Trial Advocacy Institute
On November 30, Cumberland School of Law and The Alabama State Committee of the American College of Trial Lawyers, will host the Jere White Trial Advocacy Institute at the Wynfrey Hotel in Birmingham, Ala.
Proceeds from this program will fund the Jere F. White, Jr. ’80 Fellows Program. This program has been approved for both Alabama and Georgia Continuing Legal Education [CLE] credits.
During the month of October and for some of November, Cassandra Adams, director of Cumberland School of Law’s Community Mediation Center [CCMC] and Public Interest Programs, served as a special judge in the Family Court of Jefferson County, Ala. Family Court is often called Juvenile Court because it exercises jurisdiction in matters involving children. The court handles cases such as ones where a child is alleged to be delinquent, dependent or in need of supervision.
On Wednesday, November 7, Professor Donald Jackson’s sports law class welcomed Southeastern Conference [SEC] Commissioner Mike Slive for a class discussion. Slive addressed the class regarding his sports career.
Chicago, Illinois: A mock trial team from Cumberland School of Law came in fifth place at the annual Tournament of Champions [TOC]. This year the TOC was hosted by Chicago-Kent College of Law in Chicago, Illinois, from October 24 to 28.
Ross Discusses in Jurist a 2012 US Presidential Election Issue that has been Largely Ignored by both Candidates
William Ross, Lucille Stewart Beeson Professor of Law, has published a new column on Jurist titled “The Supreme Court Should Be a Key Election Issue.” In his column he addresses one aspect of the upcoming U.S. Presidential Election that has not been discussed by either candidate.
Ross’ column states “that the likelihood of vacancies on the Supreme Court during the next four years should make the Court an important issue in the election, even though it has largely been ignored by the current candidates.”
Over the last few weeks two law student organizations, the Cumberland Republicans and the Cumberland Democrats, have each hosted a speaker to the law school.
Sunday, October, 21, 2012, began the week-long activities of the National Pro Bono Celebration. “National Pro Bono Celebration focuses the nation's attention on the increased need for pro bono services during these challenging economic times and celebrates the outstandin
On Thursday, October 25, 2012, at 11 a.m. in the John L. Carroll Moot Courtroom the Cumberland Democrats, a law student organization, will host Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Candidate Judge Robert Vance. A reception will directly follow in the Great Room.
This year the Cumberland Law Review co-hosted its annual symposium with the Birmingham Bar Association Bankruptcy and Commercial Law Section. It was held at the law school on Friday, October 19th.
In a recent press release from The White House Office of the Press Secretary, President Barack Obama nominated Joe H. Ritch, a 1975 graduate of Cumberland School of Law and a shareholder in the Huntsville, Ala., law office of Sirote & Permutt PC, to be a member of the Board of Directors of the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA). TVA is a corporation owned by the U.S. government and it provides electricity to 9 million people in portions of seven southeastern states. If confirmed to this post, Ritch will become the second Alabamian in its 79 years of existence to serve on the board. The term Ritch has been nominated for will expire on May 18, 2016.
On Tuesday, October 16, 2012, the Cumberland Republicans, a law student run organization, will host former Attorney General Alberto Gonzales at Samford University’s Cumberland School of Law.
In the age of Twitter, Google and Facebook, privacy and intellectual property are becoming legal topics of great concern. Addressing these legal topics in his scholarly work, Samford University’s Cumberland School of Law Professor Woodrow Hartzog has become one of the nation’s leading experts on privacy and technology law.
Professor Hartzog’s scholarship has not gone unnoticed by big players within international industry. His work has led to an invitation from Google to address its employees at its headquarters in Mountain View, California. On October 4, 2012, Professor Hartzog addressed Google’s employees in an hour-long presentation on privacy law. This presentation was viewed by a live audience and streamed globally to all Google employees via the company’s intranet.
The Alabama Supreme Court and the Court of Civil Appeals will hear oral arguments at Samford University Wednesday, Oct. 10, in the Wright Center.
The event, sponsored by Samford's Cumberland School of Law and the Birmingham Bar Foundation, is open to the public. Call to order will be at 9:10 a.m.
Alumnus Billy Coplin ’77 has been appointed to a three-year term on the Board of Governors of the American Bar Association (ABA). As such, he is one of 38 lawyers from throughout the country on the Board. The Board develops policies and plans for the ABA which is the largest volunteer organization in the world.
The following information from the ABA website describes the Board of Governors:
Several years ago at Samford University’s Cumberland School of Law, students expressed an interest in convening in small groups with faculty to discuss interesting and thought provoking topics outside the classroom. In response to that interest, the Cumberland Book Clubs were launched. Professors volunteered to lead the discussions, and they selected books that formed the basis for those discussions. In addition, the law school reimburses the cost of the book to each member.