Vanderbilt Law Magazine

Rana DiOrio ’91: Family Ties

Dec. 17, 2014—Rana DiOrio ’91 was inspired to found Little Pickle Press by her three children. By Fiona Soltes When President Barack Obama was elected in 2008, Rana DiOrio ’91 found herself “trying to explain the enormity of that historical milestone” to her young children. But the mother of three couldn’t find the tools to do it....

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Fall 2014 Vanderbilt Law Magazine


J. Christopher Giancarlo ’84 now commissioner of CFTC

Dec. 17, 2014—J. Christopher Giancarlo was confirmed by the U.S. Senate as a commissioner of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission in June. Chris was one of three new commissioners nominated to the five-member CFTC by President Barack Obama. Created in 1974, the CFTC’s mission is to protect market participants and the public from fraud, manipulation, abusive practices...

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Fall 2014 Vanderbilt Law Magazine


Cecil D. Branstetter ’49, 1921–2014

Dec. 17, 2014—Cecil D. Branstetter ’49, founding partner of the Nashville law firm Branstetter Stranch & Jennings, died May 7. He was 93. Branstetter was still a member of the firm he founded in 1952 after earning his law degree at Vanderbilt in 1949. He was widely considered one of the best litigators in the history of...

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Fall 2014 Vanderbilt Law Magazine


George E. Barrett ’57, 1928-2014

Dec. 17, 2014—George Barrett ’57, the indefatigable Nashville civil rights lawyer who called himself “The Citizen,” died from acute pancreatitis at 86. Barrett had continued his law practice until two weeks before his death August 26. A founding partner of Barrett Johnson Martin and Garrison, Barrett worked full-time on behalf of voters, laborers, investors and other clients...

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Fall 2014 Vanderbilt Law Magazine


Professor Harold G. Maier, 1937-2014

Dec. 17, 2014—Harold G. (Hal) Maier, a renowned scholar of international law, died August 24 following a long illness. Professor Maier spent his entire academic career at Vanderbilt Law School. He was 77. Maier was an internationally recognized authority on the application of United States regulatory legislation to foreign business activity. Over the course of his distinguished...

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Fall 2014 Vanderbilt Law Magazine


Three ’94 alums now on the bench

Dec. 17, 2014—Three members of the Class of 1994 — Tamara Ashford, Rupert Byrdsong and Sheila Jones Calloway (BA’91)—have been appointed or elected to judgeships. Tamara was confirmed by the Senate on November 21 to a 15-year term on the U.S. Tax Court in Washington, D.C. She has served as acting assistant attorney general of the Department...

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Fall 2014 Vanderbilt Law Magazine


Kent McKeever ’12: An orange jumpsuit for Lent

Dec. 17, 2014—Kent McKeever ’12 has been summoned for jury duty twice. The second time was on March 17, more than a week into Lent, so he had no choice but to wear his orange prison jumpsuit. As he entered the McLennan County courthouse in Waco, Texas, two sheriff’s officers stopped him. “The first one just kind...

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Fall 2014 Vanderbilt Law Magazine


James Balser ’16 supports Syrian Accountability Project

Dec. 17, 2014—James Balser ’16 received a Helton Fellowship from the American Society of International Law. During the summer of 2014, Balser worked with the No Peace Without Justice International Criminal Justice Program’s Syrian Accountability Project in Gazientep, Turkey. The project’s aim is to “reduce the expectation and rewards of impunity and build a culture of accountability”...

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Fall 2014 Vanderbilt Law Magazine


Class of 2014 gifts break record

Dec. 17, 2014—A record-breaking 75 percent of the Class of 2014 made a gift to support the public service initiative and the annual fund. Jackalope Brewery owner Bailey Spaulding ’09 (left) at the Class Gift Kick-off event with 2014 Class Gift Committee members Mitchell James, Rachel Bevans, Veronica Gordon, Merrick Parrott, Ann Watford and Andrew Solinger. 2014...

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Fall 2014 Vanderbilt Law Magazine


Daryl Wickstrom ’86: Going Once, Going Twice (to Asia)

Dec. 17, 2014—A headhunter’s call allowed Daryl Wickstrom ’86 to merge his love of art into a career with Sotheby’s. By Mark Obbie As a young lawyer handling mergers and acquisitions for the global law firm Gibson Dunn & Crutcher, Daryl Wickstrom ’86 wasn’t particularly excited about the work. He remembers sitting across the table from corporate decision...

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Fall 2014 Vanderbilt Law Magazine


Founders Circle Dinner

Dec. 17, 2014—Members of the Founders Circle donor society gathered at Vanderbilt’s Student Life Center on April 11 for the annual dinner hosted by Dean Chris Guthrie to celebrate their generosity. Photos by Anne Rayner

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Fall 2014 Vanderbilt Law Magazine


2013-14 Firm Giving Honor Roll

Dec. 17, 2014—The following firms made the Firm Giving Honor Roll for fiscal year 2013-14 (July 1, 2013-June 30, 2014). Many thanks to the firm representatives, listed below with their firms, who encouraged their colleagues to give back, and to all the alumni donors. 100 percent giving across all locations Firms with 40+ alumni Alston & Bird Charles...

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Fall 2014 Vanderbilt Law Magazine


25 members of the Class of 2014 secure 35 clerkships

Dec. 17, 2014—Michael Bressman, who directs the VLS Clerkship Program, announced that 33 Vanderbilt law graduates, including 25 members of the Class of 2014, secured 35 clerkships during the 2013-14 clerkship hiring cycle. Clerkships secured by members of the Class of 2014 are listed below; unless indicated otherwise, clerks are serving during the 2014-15 term: Monier M....

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Fall 2014


Reunion 2014

Dec. 17, 2014—A record-setting 441 people attended the law school’s 2014 Reunion. The weekend kicked off with the traditional all-class reception Friday night, followed by a well-attended brunch Saturday morning with comments from Dean Chris Guthrie and ending with class parties Saturday night. Our sincere thanks to the alumni volunteers whose leadership made Reunion such a success!...

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Fall 2014 Vanderbilt Law Magazine


Educating lawyers for the 21st century

Dec. 17, 2014—Dean Chris Guthrie talks candidly about the challenges and rewards of leading Vanderbilt Law School. By Grace Renshaw Since becoming Vanderbilt’s dean in July 2009, Chris Guthrie has navigated the law school through a historically challenging legal job market, an unprecedented decline in law school applications, and a rapid evolution in the way legal services are...

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Fall 2014 Vanderbilt Law Magazine


A Meaningful Endowment: The Charles B. Cox III and Lucy D. Cox Family Chair in Law and Liberty

Dec. 9, 2014—Charlie Cox ’75 endowed a new faculty chair to support great teaching at Vanderbilt Law School and to honor his family–and his principles. By Grace Renshaw Trading options first became a passion for Charles B.  Cox III ’75 (BA’72) during law school. He remembers slipping out of law classes to check on his trades. “There...

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Fall 2014 Vanderbilt Law Magazine


The Cycle of Teaching and Learning

Dec. 9, 2014—By Sybil Dunlop ’08 When I was an undergraduate, I had the good fortune to hear Kurt Vonnegut speak on my college campus. I don’t remember the substance of his speech, but I do remember that I thought it was rambling and disjointed, until the end when the whole thing brilliantly came together and 10...

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Fall 2014 Vanderbilt Law Magazine


VLS students win prestigious Burton Awards two years running

Dec. 9, 2014—A Vanderbilt Law student has been honored with a prestigious Burton writing award for the second year in a row. Blair Druhan, J.D./Ph.D. Class of 2015, received a Burton Award for Distinguished Legal Writing for her 2013 Vanderbilt Law Review Note, “Severe or Pervasive: An Analysis of Who, What, and Where Matters When Determining Sexual...

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Fall 2014 Vanderbilt Law Magazine


Moot Court winners

Dec. 9, 2014—2014 Moot Court winners Kendra Key (left) and Robin Frazer with federal appellate court Judges Kent Jordan of the Third Circuit, Jane Branstetter Stranch ’78 (BA’75) of the Sixth Circuit, and David Hamilton of the Seventh Circuit. Key will clerk for Judge Hamilton after graduating in May. Frazer, who will clerk for Judge John Rogers...

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Fall 2014 Vanderbilt Law Magazine


Judges panel features Andy D. Bennett ’82 (BA’79)

Dec. 9, 2014—Judge Andy D. Bennett ’82 (BA’79) was one of three panelists who discussed their personal paths to the bench in “A Seat at the Bench: How and Why to Become a Judge,” an April 14 panel sponsored by the Branstetter Litigation and Dispute Resolution Program. Bennett was appointed to the Tennessee Court of Appeals in...

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Fall 2014 Vanderbilt Law Magazine


Owen Jones wins Wyatt award

Dec. 9, 2014—Owen Jones, who leads the MacArthur Research Network in Law and Neuroscience, received the 2014 Joe B. Wyatt Distinguished University Professor Award from Chancellor Nicholas S. Zeppos in April. The award annually honors one member of the Vanderbilt University faculty for accomplishments that bridge multiple academic disciplines and honors the development of significant new knowledge...

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Fall 2014 Vanderbilt Law Magazine


Greg Abbott ’84 elected governor of Texas

Dec. 9, 2014—The week after launching his campaign to become Texas’ 48th governor, Greg Abbott ’84 took a whirlwind 10-city tour. An immediate front-runner who won the race in November against Democrat Wendy Davis by a wide margin, the Republican Texas attorney general touted his record as one of the most aggressive and conservative attorneys general in...

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Fall 2014 Vanderbilt Law Magazine


2014 Hall-Hartman winners

Dec. 9, 2014—Professors Michael Vandenbergh, Lisa Bressman, Chris Serkin (below right) and Ingrid Wuerth (below left) were honored in April with Hall-Hartman Awards for outstanding teaching.

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Fall 2014 Vanderbilt Law Magazine


Matthew Downer ’14 wins ABA essay competition

Dec. 9, 2014—Matthew Downer ’14 won the 2014 Gellhorn-Sargentich Law Student Essay Competition, sponsored by the ABA’s Section of Administrative Law and Regulatory Practice, which carries a $5,000 prize. The annual award recognizes a single student for a paper on an administrative law topic. Downer’s winning entry, “Tentative Interpretations: The Abracadabra of Administrative Rulemaking and the End...

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Fall 2014 Vanderbilt Law Magazine


19 members of the Class of 2014 selected for Order of the Coif

Dec. 9, 2014—Nineteen graduates of the Class of 2014 have been selected for membership in the Order of the Coif. Members of this prestigious organization are selected by faculty approval and represent the top 10 percent of their class. Keane Addison Barger of Brandenburg, Kentucky (B.A. Centre College)—Clerk to Judge Susan H. Black of the U.S. Court...

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Fall 2014 Vanderbilt Law Magazine


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