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Alumni News Archive

LSU Law News

April 2010

New Faculty Appointed
April 29, 2010


Chancellor Jack M. Weiss has announced the appointment of two new faculty members to fill important positions at the Law Center. 

Christopher J. Tyson will join the Law Center as Assistant Professor of Law in fall 2010. Tyson has worked with Jones Walker LLP in Baton Rouge since 2006. He has specialized in real estate matters, urban planning, land use, and oil and gas mineral land development. Recently, Tyson served as President of the Baton Rouge Capital Area Transit System Board of Commissioners. 

Tyson graduated with a B.A. in Architecture, with a minor in Business Administration, from Howard University. He completed his Master of Public Policy degree at the Harvard University’s Kennedy School, and went on to earn his J.D from Georgetown Law Center, where he graduated with honors in May 2006. 

While at Georgetown, Tyson served as Vice-President of the Black Law Students Association; Vice-President of Chapter Development for the American...

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Gene W. Lafitte Named Distinguished Alumnus of the Year
April 28, 2010


Gene W. Lafitte, a 1952 graduate of the Law Center, has been named the Distinguished Alumnus of the Year, announced Chancellor Jack M. Weiss during the spring meeting of the Law Center Alumni Board of Trustees.

“This is the highest professional honor awarded by the LSU Law Center, and Gene is extremely deserving of this honor. He has been a leader in the legal profession in Louisiana and beyond for decades. Just as importantly, Gene is universally respected as a person of unquestioned integrity.” Lafitte was nominated by long-time friend, John P. Laborde (’49), who was also present for the announcement, along with Gene’s wife, Jackie. Lafitte will be honored at special ceremonies this fall.

When asked about his philosophy and vision of the legal profession, Lafitte said, “In my view there is no substitute for hard work and for being conscientious about one’s responsibilities—to the client, the court and other lawyers. I hope that we can all...

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LSU Law Review Banquet Held
April 28, 2010


LSU Law Review Volume 70 Board of Editors

Front row (seated) l to r:  Casey Faucon (executive senior editor), Christopher Odinet (editor-in-chief), Matthew Juneau (articles editor), Gina Palermo (senior editor)
Back row (standing) l to r
:  Carmen Hebert (senior editor), Kelly Brilleaux (senior editor), Keith Fernandez (senior editor), Sarah Perkins (managing editor), Sarah Cable (production editor)

More than 40 Law Review members and just as many Law Review alumni, professors, and guests were in attendance at the LSU Law Review Annual Dinner and Banquet held April 10, 2010 at Juban’s Restaurant in Baton Rouge.

Editor-in-chief Chris Odinet welcomed the guests and Matthew Juneau, articles editor introduced the Thomas Galligan, President and Professor of Humanities at Colby-Sawyer College, as the special guest and keynote speaker for the event.

Honored at the banquet were Albert O. “Chip” Saulsbury, IV who received the 2009-2010 Vincent & Elkins...

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ABA Re-accreditation Team Visits LSU Law
April 28, 2010

On March 24–27, the Law Center completed its site evaluation process for re-accreditation by the American Bar Association (ABA).  Academic institutions must be reaccredited every seven academic years, according to standards established by the ABA’s Section on Legal Education and the Association of American Law Schools.    

An extensive Faculty Self Study was conducted by the faculty and administration prior to the visit. In addition, a Site Evaluation Questionnaire provided additional information to the team of evaluators.

Topics explored during the three-day site visit included Students and Student Activities, Faculty, Program of Legal Studies, Finances, Information Resources, Facilities, Administration, as well as other topics such as Alumni Relations and Fundraising.

The seven-member site team was lead by Dean Emeritus Len Strickman of Florida International.  Meetings with students, faculty, staff and administrators were scheduled throughout the...

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Pulitzer-Prize Winning Journalist Steve Coll Engages Law Center Audiences
April 28, 2010


Steve Coll, a provocative investigative journalist and Pulitzer-prize winning author, provided an “on the ground assessment” of the current war and political situation in Afghanistan at events held with students, faculty, staff, and alumni on Friday, April 16. Coll is the author of numerous books, including Ghost Wars: The Secret History of the CIA, Afghanistan and Bin Laden, and most recently, The Bin Ladens: Arabian Family in the American Century.  He spoke at the Law Center and to alumni at the annual Chancellor’s Council dinner. The events commemorated the 150 year LSU Sesquicentennial.

Michael A. Patterson (‘71), Chair of the LSU Law Center Chancellor’s Council for ‘09-‘10, welcomed some 200 guests to the Friday evening dinner. Patterson thanked the members of the Council for their financial support of the Law Center.

Chancellor Jack Weiss recognized the major gift donors who have supported the Law Center over the past year....

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LSU Law Center Hosts Symposium on Transfer of Juveniles to Adult Court
April 28, 2010


“Where is justice?” asked Gerald Gault, as he ended his interview during a symposium on juvenile justice at the LSU Law Center on Friday, March 19.  Gault was the petitioner in the 1967 landmark U.S. Supreme Court case In Re Gault that revolutionized the field of juvenile law.  In its ruling in the Gault case, the Court extended the right to counsel and other due process protections to juveniles during delinquency proceedings.   Gault, at age 15, was sentenced to state custody until his 21st birthday following proceedings that denied him access to an attorney or application of rules of evidence.  He spoke, along with numerous state and nationally recognized experts, to a standing room only audience at the day-long symposium.

The symposium, titled The Backdoor of the Juvenile Courts: Waivers and the Impact of Criminalization, was sponsored by the LSU Law Center, the Louisiana Law Review, The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur...

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Moot Court and Trial Advocacy Programs Gain National Recognition
April 27, 2010

Seventeen of the LSU Law Center’s 26 Moot Court and Trial Advocacy teams received either team or individual awards in competitions held throughout the United States this school year. The teams and individual members were recognized at the April 8 annual awards banquet held in downtown Baton Rouge. 

“It was a banner year for our programs, and I am enormously proud of our students,” said Chancellor Jack Weiss.  “There is no doubt that our programs are growing—not only in the number of students who participate—but also in the role that the programs play in defining the LSU Law experience. The strength of our team and individual efforts has resulted in a growing competiveness and increasing national recognition, while our employers tell us that LSU Law continues to provide practice-ready lawyers. There’s no doubt that Moot Court and Trial Ad experience play a huge role in the positive reputation of our graduates.“

Also recognized...

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Professor Paul Baier Voted Professor of the Year by Class of 2010
April 27, 2010


LSU Law Professor Paul Baier, George M. Armstrong, Jr. Professor of Law, was voted Professor of the Year by the Law Center Class of 2010.  His students characterize Professor Baier as an extraordinary teacher who uses extraordinary teaching methods. The students honored Baier at a reception held Thursday, April 15 at the Law Center and presented him with an inscribed plaque.

Chancellor Jack Weiss introduced Baier and commented, “There is only one Paul Baier and all of you will agree, there will never be another” bringing cheers and applause to the more than 50 students, colleagues, family and friends in attendance.

"Justice E.D. White obviously sought a position on the court so that Paul could one day write a play about  him," joked Weiss.

In accepting this honor, Professor Baier made reference to his life-long commitment to bringing Chief Justice Edward Douglass White’s memory to life in Baier’s play, Father Chief Justice; “I assume...

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LSU Law Library Ranked #5 Best in the Nation
April 27, 2010

The LSU Law library has been ranked among the top five best law libraries in the nation. The National Jurist magazine rankings were released in late March, and the LSU Law Center’s top ranking placed it ahead of many elite public and private law schools. A photo of the library also appeared in the article titled, What Makes a Great Library.

The rankings used a variety of factors, including volumes, titles, number of seats per student, number of students per librarian, and the hours of operation. The editors compared all 198 ABA-approved law schools based upon the most recent data provided by the schools to the American Bar Association.

“A law school cannot excel without an exemplary library and modern technology,” said Chancellor Jack Weiss. “Resources really matter and directly impact the quality of the legal education we provide.”    

Dragomir Cosanici, Associate Vice Chancellor for Information Services and Library Director, was...

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S. Gene Fendler Named President of Alumni Board of Trustees; Executive Committee Also Appointed
April 27, 2010


S. Gene Fendler of New Orleans has been named President of the LSU Law Center Alumni Board of Trustees by Chancellor Jack M. Weiss. Fendler, of Liskow and Lewis, is a long-time member of the alumni advisory board, and he will serve a two-year term as President, beginning Spring 2010.

“We are all fortunate to have as able a person as Gene Fendler to carry on with the leadership of our Board. Gene is someone who cares deeply about the LSU Law Center, and he is anxious to move the Board into new and interesting directions,” said Chancellor Weiss. “He succeeds Oliver ‘Rick’ Richard (‘77), who has been a generous and good friend to the Law Center, as well as an outstanding leader of our Board since Fall 2005.” 

Fendler was first appointed a member of the LSU Law Alumni Board of Trustees in Fall 2005. He is a 1973 graduate of LSU Law Center and a former member of the Louisiana Law Review.  He often appears as a guest lecturer at...

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E.D. White Lectures Address Higher Education Funding and The Case of Louisiana
April 21, 2010


This year’s E.D. White Lectures, jointly sponsored by the Law Center and the LSU Department of Political Science, featured nationally-noted scholar of higher education, Professor Michael McLendon of Vanderbilt University. 

McLendon, Associate Professor of Higher Education and Public Policy, and Associate Dean and Chief of Staff of Peabody [Education] College at Vanderbilt, also directs the Program in Higher Education Leadership and Policy and the Master’s of Public Policy (MPP) program. He teaches graduate and undergraduate courses in state politics and policy, organization and governance of higher education, and leadership.

McLendon spoke on Mission, Markets & States: Developments Reshaping American Public Higher Education and Crisis of Opportunity: Louisiana Higher Education in a Time of Fiscal Distress in his two...

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Les Avocats Reunion CANCELED: to be rescheduled
April 20, 2010

LSU Law grads of 51 plus years will gather for the Les Avocats Reunion on Saturday, April 24. Come join your classmates and colleagues for a wonderful luncheon, and spend time catching up with one another! 

To mark the occasion, Professor Paul R. Baier will present Father Chief Justice:  Notes for a Play, beginning at 11:00 a.m. in Room 106 of the Law Center.  The play is a preview of his acclaimed theatrical production lately performed in the Louisiana Supreme Court.  It should be a wonderful prelude to the Noon luncheon scheduled next door at the LSU Faculty Club. 

The Law Center will also be celebrating LSU Day, commemorating LSU’s Sesquicentennial, the 150-year anniversary of the founding of the University. Following the Reunion, make plans to join in the LSU Day happenings --  right next door on the Parade Grounds. 


11:00 a.m.

Performance of Father Chief Justice:  Notes for a Play...

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Law Center Retains Top 100 Ranking in 2011 U.S. News Best Graduate Schools
April 20, 2010

The LSU Law Center remained solidly positioned among the top 100 American law schools in rankings released on April 15.  The 2011 U.S. News and World Report Best Graduate Schools rankings placed the Center at 80th nationally, down slightly from the previous rankings in 2010.  

 “Although I’d rather have moved up 5 places than down 5 places [this year], it’s a very small move,” commented Chancellor Jack Weiss. “Our raw score went down by only one point. We are still solidly placed among the nation’s top 100 law schools.”

Although some 188 law schools in the nation are reviewed by the magazine, only law schools that place in the top 100 receive a specific numerical ranking. LSU Law’s ranking has climbed dramatically in the closely watched list, with the Center moving into the top 100 in 2004.  The 13 place move last year – up to 75th - was one of the largest positive moves in the...

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