Alumni

Holly Thompson and Vanessa Zapata named George Barrett Social Justice Fellows for 2019

May. 21, 2019—Thompson will focus on labor trafficking at Legal Aid of North Carolina; Zapata will advocate for medical care and support for adults with disabilities at the Tennessee Justice Center.

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Wesley Dozier ’19 (BA’16) named Equal Justice Works Fellow

May. 14, 2019—Dozier will work at Just City, a legal nonprofit in Memphis that focuses on adults and teenagers involved with the criminal justice system.

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23 2019 graduates honored with awards at Commencement

May. 10, 2019—Josh Landis (BA'14) received the Founder's Medal for first honors for the Class of 2019.

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Margaret Dodson ’16 honored as Pro Bono Attorney of the Year by Legal Aid Society of Tennessee

May. 9, 2019—Dodson is an associate with Bass Berry & Sims in Nashville, She and fellow BBS associate Jeff Gibson were honored for their work on behalf of a disabled man threatened with the loss of medical coverage.

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Alumni


2019 graduates Sam Heller and Jordyn McCarley named Gideon’s Promise Fellows

May. 9, 2019—Heller will join the Hamilton County Public Defender’s office in Cincinnati, Ohio. McCarley will join the Nashville Public Defenders.

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Emily Lamm ’19 wins National LGBT Bar Association’s Greenberg Writing Contest

May. 7, 2019—Lamm’s award-winning article, published in the Tulane Journal of Law & Sexuality, addresses a procedure for updating birth certificates.

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Katie Cohen ’21 awarded Helton Fellowship for international pro bono legal service

Apr. 30, 2019—The fellowship allows Cohen to work at Global Rights Compliance at The Hague this summer.

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Annie Cappetta and Eileen Bautista Fay named Class of 2021 Garrison Social Justice Scholars

Apr. 29, 2019—Fay will spend this summer working at the Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence; Cappetta will work at the Electronic Frontier Foundation, which advocates for digital privacy and free speech, and South Carolina Appleseed Legal Justice Center

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Mitchell Galloway ’19 selected for Department of Justice Honors Program

Apr. 24, 2019—Galloway will join the Criminal Enforcement Section of the Tax Division of the U.S. Department of Justice based in Washington, D.C.

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Lawrence Epstein ’92 (BA’89) elected to the Vanderbilt Board of Trust

Apr. 24, 2019—Adolpho Birch III '91 re-elected to a second five-year term. Epstein is COO for the Ultimate Fighting Championship and president of IKE Gaming Inc. Birch is senior vice president of labor policy and league affairs for the National Football League.

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Alumni


Timothy Lupinacci ’91 assumes role of chairman and CEO of Baker Donelson

Apr. 18, 2019—Lupinacci succeeds Ben Adams '81, who has served as the firm's chairman and CEO for a total of 21 years.

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Pro Bono Spring Break student teams support lending reform and property tax appeals in Atlanta

Apr. 18, 2019—Six students worked at Atlanta Legal Aid with Equal Justice Works Fellow Darrius Woods ’17, supporting programs to reform predatory lending practices and provide property tax relief to low-income clients.

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Adolpho Birch III ’91 shares his path to professional success during campus talks

Apr. 15, 2019—Birch is senior VP of labor policy and league affairs for the National Football League. He participated in five events, including a panel discussion moderated by Chancellor Nicholas S. Zeppos, “College Athletics, the Draft and the Business of Professional Sports,” April 23 and 24.

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Dalton family commits $12.75 million to support the Law and Business Program

Apr. 15, 2019—The commitment from former Vanderbilt Board of Trust chairman Mark Dalton ’75 and his family includes a bequest that will endow the program, which prepares students to enter legal practice with a solid understanding of business law, corporate management and accounting principles, in perpetuity.

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Aisha McWeay ’09, executive director of Still She Rises Tulsa, featured in Essence Q&A

Apr. 9, 2019—McWeay was named executive director of Still She Rises Tulsa, an initiative of the Bronx Defenders that represents mothers in the criminal justice system, in January. Essence magazine published this interview with McWeay March 19.

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Chancellor Nicholas S. Zeppos to step down Aug. 15

Apr. 4, 2019—Zeppos will return to the law faculty after a year-long sabbatical.

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Pro Bono Spring Break students advocate for immigrants held in an ICE detention center

Apr. 3, 2019—George Barrett Social Justice Fellow Lynn Stopher ’18 and a team of five VLS students traveled to Ocilla, Georgia, to meet with immigrant detainees to support the work of the Southeast Immigrant Freedom Initiative of the Southern Poverty Law Center.

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Ed Cheng and co-author Alex Nunn ’14 examine how courts deal with process-based evidence

Mar. 27, 2019—In their article, "Beyond the Witness: Bringing a Process Perspective to Modern Evidence Law," they address the need to deal with evidence such as photographs, business records, electronic phone records and store receipts as a different category from witness testimony.

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John Ryder ’74 sworn in as Tennessee Valley Authority board member

Mar. 21, 2019—Ryder was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on Feb. 28. His term on the board expires May 18, 2021.

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Alumni


Jim Rossi appointed to the Judge D.L. Lansden Chair in Law

Mar. 12, 2019—Rossi is nationally recognized for his research on administrative and energy law. He is currently serving as the law school’s associate dean for research.

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Hunter Thornton, JD/MSF ’19, and team of Owen MBA students win first place at VCIC regional competititon

Feb. 25, 2019—Thornton and his five teammates, all students at the Owen Graduate School of Management, will compete in the global finals of the Venture Capital Investment Competition in April.

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Abigail Wood ’21 and Chandler Ray ’21 win 2019 Mock Trial competition

Feb. 22, 2019—Brent Duddles ’21 and Michael Clark ’21 were finalists. The competition was sponsored by King & Spalding.

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Peter Cornick ’20 and Elizabeth Holden ’20 win 2019 Bass Berry & Sims Moot Court Competition

Feb. 12, 2019—Joline Desruisseuax '20 and Braden Morell '20 were finalists. The round was argued before federal appellate Judges Stephen A. Higginson of the Fifth Circuit, David J. Barron of the First Circuit and Amy Coney Barrett of the Seventh Circuit.

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David Williams II, trailblazing former vice chancellor and athletics director at Vanderbilt University, died Feb. 8

Feb. 8, 2019—Williams was a professor of law. He had rejoined the law faculty after retiring from his role as vice chancellor and athletics director last fall.

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Chris Guthrie reapppointed as dean of Vanderbilt Law School

Jan. 25, 2019—Guthrie will began his third term as dean and John Wade-Kent Syverud Professor of Law on July 1, 2019. His appointment was announced by Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Susan R. Wente.

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