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Alumni and Admitted Students Reception with a View

Posted By Kevin R. Johnson, Mar 5, 2015

Last night, the School of Law held an admitted student/alumni reception at the San Francisco office of law firm Shepard Mullin. Look at that view!

View from firm
View from the 17th floor of Four Embarcadero Center

We had a great group of admitted students from many excellent schools, including Harvard, UC Berkeley, Stanford, UC Davis, Iowa, Carnegie Mellon, McGill, Smith, and more.  Steve Sacks '80 graciously hosted the event and introduced me to make a few remarks about the Law School's many success and incredible combination of academic excellence, diversity, and community.  Faculty were in abundance, with Professors Rose Cuison Villazor, Afra Afsharipour, Brian Soucek, Chris Elmendorf, and soon-to-be King Hall Professor Bill S. Dodge (currently at UC Hastings), all of whom answered the questions from the soon-to-be law students.  Assistant Dean for Career Services Craig Compton was there to answer questions about career possibilities, which have been improving dramatically in recent years.  Assistant Dean for Admission and Financial Aid Kristin Mercado and Associate Director of Admissions Scott Vignos answered questions about admissions, tours of the law school, and financial aid. Last but not least, we had a super group of enthusiastic alums, including last year's Law Student Association President Kathryn Bilder '14, Gene Woo '85 (Alumni Board member), Matt Struhar '13, Morgan Forsey '05 (a new partner at Sheppard Mullin), Kelly Van Aken '10, Roey Rahmil '10, Gabe Zeldin '10, Errol Dauis '11, Jonathan Braunstein '03, Toni Qiu '14, and many more. It truly was a warm (69 degrees in San Francisco yesterday afternoon) and wonderful -- and, hopefully, informative for the admitted students -- event in the city by the bay.


Luis Alejo '01 Returns to King Hall for Cesar Chavez Week

Posted By Kevin R. Johnson, Mar 4, 2015

The School of Law had the pleasure of hosting Assembly Member Luis Alejo, a proud King Hall alum from the Class of 2001, as a speaker during La Raza Law Students Association's Cesar Chavez week. 

Alejo talk

Alejo was co-chair of LRLSA as a student at King Hall and served as a member of the Law School Admissions Committee.  He talked about his career at community college, Cal, and UC Davis School of Law and how his education taught him the importance of coalition building in the political process, a skill that he finds invaluable in the Legislature.  Alejo also thanked his former law professors, including Amagda Perez and Cruz Reynoso, who attended his talk.

It was great seeing one of my former students inspiring the next generation of lawyers!


KHLF Auction and Intra-School Negotiations Competition

Posted By Kevin R. Johnson, Mar 2, 2015

It was another great weekend at UC Davis School of Law – and it was the students who led the events this weekend.

On Friday evening, the King Hall Legal Foundation held its 37th annual auction supporting public interest fellowships for law students. 

KHLF auction
Photo courtesy of @varun_aery '16 via Twitter.

There were some amazing things on the auction block, including a week for two in Ireland, a night of “Irish revelry” with a group of King Hall’s favorite – and irreverent -- professors, a luxury vacation in Lake Tahoe, autographed pictures of President Obama and Supreme Court Justice Harry Blackmun, some amazing pictures (including one of Robert F. Kennedy and his brother John), a trip to watch the Dodgers beat the Giants at AT&T Park [<--blogger's commentary], and much, much more.  I stopped by to bid on some items and was able to catch up with many students, professors, and alums.  Professors Johns, Shanske, and Ventry were enthusiastically bidding on a wide variety of items.  Legal Service of Northern California  attorneys Gary Smith and Julie Rogado, who teach public interest classes for King Hall, and Amy Williams '05 seemed to be enjoying the festivities.  It was a warm and exciting King Hall evening!

Early Saturday morning, I welcomed the judges – lawyers, alums, mediators, business professionals, professors, and friends – at the 8th Annual Intra-School Negotiations Competition. 

Negotiations Trophy
I took this shot of the coveted trophy.

The competition gives UC Davis School of Law students the chance to hone their negotiations skills and receive valuable feedback from people who spend their days in the negotiations trenches.  The competition is a tribute to professor Donna Shestowsky, who is the enthusiastic, supportive, and knowledgeable leader of the King Hall Negotiations Team (the student sponsor of the competition).  Professor Shestowsky also is one of the scholarly leaders in the field.  Professor Shestowsky missed her first competition, as she was caring for her baby boy, who was born just a few weeks ago. Congratulations, Professor Shestowsky!