Sign in or create a free account to get FREE SHIPPING and DISCOUNTS

Author Spotlight
Author Spotlight

Showing 18 results of 21

Katerina Lewinbuk random
Katerina Lewinbuk
We asked Katerina Lewinbuk a professor of law at South Texas College of Law, Houston, what has inspired and motivated her throughout her career. This author spotlight gives a glimpse into her passion for law and what brought her to where she is today.  What or who motivated you to study law? [KL] I was born and raised in a totalitarian country (Soviet Union). After immigrating to the United States alone at age 19, I was determined to understand my own rights and the rights of others, whom I could represent and support. I wanted to be an active participant in the American legal system, which provides for our precious freedoms and due process of law – something that a person with my background cannot take for granted.     Did you have a favorite professor in law school?  If so, who was the person and what made them stand out? [KL] Professor (now Vice-Dean) Julie Spanbauer was my favorite professor. She taught me in my first semester of law school and was one of the first lawyers I met. She was strict, demanding, but also supportive. She was just a few years older than my classmates and I at the time but kept proper boundaries and had our respect. She achieved so much, yet she never let it get to her head, but rather shared her knowledge and success with others. Seeing her accomplishments made my personal goals seem somehow possible! When I came to her overwhelmed by my enormous workload and heavy pressure to succeed, she told me: “Tune everything out! Just put your head down and work!” I still remember her saying this, and it helps me to this day. What law school course did you enjoy the most? [KL] Although I should probably not say this because people will laugh at me or not believe it, I truly enjoyed my entire 1L year. After two weeks in law school, I literally fell in love! In love with the logic, arguments, legal analysis, and one’s pure ability to research and understand her rights – in every possible scenario! It was empowering and intellectually stimulating. If I had to choose one favorite course, it would be Legal Ethics/Professional Responsibility. I know some students do not really care for the subject, but they are missing out… The structure and regulation of our profession is key to our legal system and all we do, not to mention the answer to who we really are as lawyers! My Legal Ethics course was taught by Professor Frank Morrissey (now deceased), a former partner at Baker & McKenzie. He made us realize that the rules of ethics are very real and of critical importance to every lawyer, regardless of specialty. What are your primary areas of writing and teaching? What fascinates you about these areas of law? [KL] I teach a few different subjects, but would name “legal ethics, malpractice, and profession/professional responsibility” as my main area of expertise. My admiration for the subject matter is two-fold. First, I think the extent and depth of our profession is enormous. This includes our mission – the overall purpose of lawyering, regulation, and ethical boundaries for our professional conduct – as well as our role in the courtroom, for our clients, and so much more. Furthermore, I enjoy a comparative aspect of lawyering in the United States and other countries, global trends and developments. Second, legal malpractice cases are a great source of learning because they always include the alleged malpractice issue and the underlying case, which could involve any area of law. Do (or did) you have a mentor or someone that has inspired or encouraged you in your writing or teaching? [KL] Our former Dean, Dean Emeritus Jim Alfini. Jim believed in me from my first interview with him when I was a faculty candidate at the South Texas College of Law Houston in 2006. When he looked up from reviewing my curriculum vitae, he had the biggest smile of approval. Ever since, Jim has always been there to guide me through my teaching and scholarship journey. I admire Jim’s academic work and accomplishments, but also his kind and genuine nature and sense of humor. I always feel inspired and grateful after talking to him. What motivated you to write a casebook? [KL] What an interesting question in my case… I would honestly say the Wolters Kluwer representative, whose name I don’t even know… He came to my office as he was doing rounds in my school visiting with professors and promoting new books and started his talk, while I was distracted getting ready for class. Finally, he got my attention by asking, “What is this crazy pile of papers with a rubber band?”  I explained that I had put together my own set of materials for a Professional Responsibility course, including modern and engaging cases, MPRE prep, logical timeline for concepts, etc. I even proudly told him that another ethics professor had requested to use this “crazy pile.” He then said: “It sounds crazy you did not turn it into a book – looks like 90 percent of the work is already done!” I was speechless – this simple and genius idea had never crossed my mind before! As luck would have it, soon after that I met Rick Mixter and Anton Yakovlev, and later (thanks to them!) the rest of the amazing WK Team that made this project a reality with 2 book editions by now, and even a matching interactive book version via WK’s innovative project Casebook Connect. I really wanted to fly solo with this book, and they supported me! What has been the most influential or pivotal moment in your career? [KL] Becoming a tenured full professor is a huge milestone in one’s academic career. I will never forget that day! It is the moment when one really feels approval and support of her colleagues and the entire academic community. The path is not easy, but so worth it at the end! Congratulating me then, a respected colleague told me: “Tenure is a chance to launch and advance your career – it is a big start! Not sure why some people confuse it with retirement…” I giggled but promised to remember the honor and not take it for granted! What changes in legal education excite you? [KL] I love the idea of “practice-ready” and “legal skills”! It is great we are now training our students on problem-solving and actual lawyering tasks while in law school. Although law school can never fully replace work experience, it is starting to come close with our legal clinics, skills classes, etc. What advice do you have for today’s law students?  [KL] I will reiterate what Vice-Dean Spanbauer advised me 23 years ago, “Tune everything out! Just put your head down and work!” I will just add: “The rest will come!” But also, remember that being an attorney is a privilege that should be cherished. If you love what you do, the work becomes easy and joyful. Never forget – you have a high purpose: you are here to represent others. Finally, always take the high road and… be positive! We all want to be around positive people!!! How do you hope to be remembered by your students or law school? [KL]Knowledgeable! Positive! Compassionate! Supportive! And someone who never took my fortunes for granted! What are your interests outside of law?  [KL] I love travels and being with my family and friends. I love running and yoga! I love laughing like crazy over a silly joke! I love dancing and having deep conversations about life! I love interesting people! I love reading, but only the books that capture me – otherwise, I quit quickly.  I love Russian language and culture! I love writing in both English and Russian. Katerina is a professor at South Texas College of Law, Houston, and is the author of the Wolters Kluwer coursebook, Connecting Ethics and Practice: A Lawyer's Guide to Professional Responsibility, Second Edition.
Read more
Stephen C. Yeazell random
Stephen C. Yeazell
We asked Stephen C. Yeazell, David G. Price & Dallas P. Price Distinguished Professor of Law Emeritus at UCLA School of Law, what has inspired and motivated him throughout his career. This author spotlight gives a glimpse into his passions and what brought him to where he is today. What or who motivated you to study law? [SCY] I was cruising toward what I thought would be a doctorate in English literature (medieval and Renaissance) when for the first time I encountered peers who were in law school. Asking them about what they were studying, I found myself more interested in the questions they were considering than in John Milton’s style in Paradise Lost. So I applied to law school; I’m quite sure the world did not lose a great Milton scholar. Did you have a favorite professor in law school?  If so, who was the person and what made them stand out? [SCY] I was blessed by several wonderful teachers who took an interest in my work and who let me serve them as research assistants, in particular Morton Horwitz and David Shapiro. What law school course did you enjoy the most? [SCY] It would probably be a tie between my first year torts courts (taught by Morton Horwitz) and a Legal Process course taught by Duncan Kennedy. What are your primary areas of writing and teaching? What fascinates you about these areas of law? [SCY] I teach and write about procedure, broadly speaking. In the first part of my career my writing was mostly about the roots of the modern class action. For the last couple of decades I’ve been interested in what might be called the dynamics of civil litigation, as those are affected by changes in the structure of the bar, in litigation finance, in increasingly nuanced forms of settlement, in the changing demography of civil litigation and in the strange way in which for a decade or so civil litigation became a topic of partisan political discussion. Do (or did) you have a mentor or someone that has inspired or encouraged you in your writing or teaching? [SCY] I’ve been blessed with a number of wonderful mentors, starting with Morton Horwitz and David Shapiro at law school and continuing with numerous colleagues here at UCLA, among whom Norman Abrams, Kenneth Karst, and Murray Schwartz stand out particularly. I should add that I’ve also been inspired by the examples of UCLA colleagues far outside the law school—ranging from medicine to anthropology to literature, who have served as wonderful examples of what intellectual creativity is all about.  What motivated you to write a casebook? [SCY] In the mid-1980s the then-publisher at Little Brown (subsequently Aspen/Wolters Kluwer) asked me to take over an existing casebook that in different ways had lost both its authors. That meant I had a head start—not having to start from scratch—and could, over several editions, renovate various sections in ways that seemed to make sense. In recent years I have been delighted to have lured my colleague Prof. Joanna Schwartz into the project. A prize-winning teacher and path-breaking scholar, she also possesses a wonderful eye for good cases, and sufficient tact to persuade me that this or that favorite—but out-dated or otherwise unsuitable—case should be jettisoned.  What has been the most influential or pivotal moment in your career? [SCY] I can think of three. One was UCLA’s offering to hire me, from which the other two flowed. The second was taking on the casebook, which forced me to take a broader view of the field and led to some articles I still think good. Finally, I’ve been privileged to participate in several out-of-the-law-school activities at UCLA, which have given me a broader vision both of my own field and of the possibilities for creative academic work. What changes in legal education excite you? [SCY] These changes relate not just to law but to education more generally: I’m interested in the “flipped classroom,” in which students use in-class time with collaborative projects. And I’ve had some success with “personal response” systems that allow law students to have real-time, low stakes feedback to help them understand which concepts they may not yet grasp sufficiently. What advice do you have for today’s law students?  [SCY] First, realize that changes in the practice of law mean you’ll likely not spend an entire career in one practice setting, so think about a career as possibly having several stages. Second, realize that even in big-city, big-law practices reputation matters: don’t be a jerk—and you can be an extremely effective lawyer without bluster or chest-beating. Finally, I would like to pass on a wonderful thought from the 19th-century Swiss poet and moral philosopher Henri-Frédéric Amiel: “Life is short, and we do not have much time to gladden the hearts of those who travel the way with us. So be swift to love and make haste to be kind.” How do you hope to be remembered by your students or law school? [SCY] I’d hope to be remembered as a teacher who wanted my students to learn, and who looked forward to admiring their careers. As a colleague I’d like to be remembered as one who cared about the institution and its culture, and who wanted colleagues to succeed in their work.   What are your interests outside of law?  [SCY] I’m an enthusiastic cook (sourdough bread being a recent breakthrough), a moderate hiker, and an immoderate reader, with tastes that run to non-fiction and 19th century novels. Stephen C. Yeazell is a Distinguished Professor of Law Emeritus at UCLA School of Law, and is the author of Civil Procedure, Tenth Edition and Federal Rules of Civil Procedure: With Selected Statutes, Cases, and Other Materials, 2018.
Read more
Nadelle Grossman random
Nadelle Grossman
We asked Nadelle Grossman, Associate Professor of Law at Marquette University Law School, what has inspired and motivated her throughout her career. This author spotlight gives a glimpse into her passions and what brought her to where she is today. What or who motivated you to study law? [NG] While part of me thinks that I was motivated to study law in response to the injustice of two police officers harassing me for hours while they falsely accused me of doing “doughnuts” in the high school parking lot, I think the real reason is that I have always viewed one of my primary roles in life as advancing the rights of others.  Did you have a favorite professor in law school?  If so, who was the person and what made them stand out? [NG] My favorite professor in law school was Professor André (who, sadly, lost his battle to cancer after I graduated).  He taught Business Associations and Mergers and Acquisitions by discussing the doctrinal material through the lens of current events. The material really came to life through that approach. What law school course did you enjoy the most? [NG] Mergers and Acquisition. What are your primary areas of writing and teaching? What fascinates you about these areas of law? [NG] I write in the areas of contracts, corporate and securities laws, and corporate governance.  Do (or did) you have a mentor or someone that has inspired or encouraged you in your writing or teaching? [NG] One of my best friends and colleagues, Kali Murray, has always been my scholarly sounding board and has encouraged me to look at corporate and securities law issues from new perspectives. What motivated you to write a casebook? [NG] As a former transactional lawyer, I regularly used contracts to help clients achieve their business goals.  In fact, contracts are the primary tool used in a transactional practice.  However, as a law professor, I was surprised not to see this transactional perspective reflected in Contracts casebooks. Writing this book has allowed me to fix that disconnect. Thus, in the book, students can experience what it is that transactional lawyers do and how they use contracts and contract terms to further clients’ goals, while also developing important transactional skills like planning and problem solving.     What has been the most influential or pivotal moment in your career? [NG] While I do not have a single “pivotal” moment in my career, I did come to an important realization during my years of practice: I realized how much I liked my clients, and how close I had become to them. I realized this as I performed legal tasks for those clients not because I wanted to bill hours, but because I wanted to help those clients advance their businesses. In fact, I remain friends with many of my former clients today because of the bonds we built through work. This, in turn, made me realize how important it is to build relationships as part of a legal practice—doing so not only makes a lawyer personally invested in a client’s success, but also makes a lawyer feel professionally fulfilled.       What changes in legal education excite you? [NG] I am excited by the increasing value being placed on (1) innovative pedagogies such as team-based learning and collaboration, and (2) the development of professional skills in the classroom.    What advice do you have for today’s law students?  [NG] While knowing the substantive law is important, to succeed in a workplace, you will need to be collaborative, hard-working, and helpful. Also, do not underestimate the value of an in-person conversation or phone call to build a rapport with clients and other attorneys. How do you hope to be remembered by your students or law school? [NG] I want to be remembered by my students as the professor who (1) students never felt intimated or embarrassed to talk to about either class-related questions or life challenges, (2) was demanding but fair, (3) made learning collaborative and fun, and (4) helped students learn how to take a transactional perspective to the law. What are your interests outside of law?  [NG] Spending time with my family (I have twin boys, a daughter, a fabulous husband and a slightly grouchy older dog), exercising (formerly triathlons, currently boxing), and reading (time permitting—which it often does not these days). Nadelle Grossman ia an Associate Professor of Law at Marquette University Law School and is the author of the brand new textbook, Contracts in Context: from Transaction to Litigation.
Read more
Kathleen M. Mullin random
Kathleen M. Mullin
We asked Kathleen M. Mullin, a highly qualified legal expert with the United States Navy Defense Counsel Assistant Program and Navy JAG Corp., what has inspired and motivated her throughout her career. This author spotlight gives a glimpse into her passion for law and what brought her to where she is today.  What or who motivated you to study law? [KMM] My path to studying law is was somewhat unique in that I knew I wanted to be a lawyer from when I was very young. I didn’t know a single lawyer, but, from an early age, I had a deep sense of equity. I knew that I wanted to learn how to make the world more equitable and fair, particularly for those with fewer opportunities. I was one of those kids, and I saw the law as a way to stand shoulder to shoulder with folks whose lives were far more luxurious than mine.  Did you have a favorite professor in law school? If so, who was the person and what made them stand out? [KMM] One of the great strokes of fortune in my life was being accepted to Boston University School of Law. As an undergrad at BU, I walked by the Law Tower many times, and when my acceptance letter came, I was over the moon. My BU Law degree has opened many doors for me. In my studies, I had the privilege to be in class with renowned legal scholar and lawyer Archibald Cox. By then, Professor Cox was well into retirement, and taught with great enthusiasm. I struggled to write multiple drafts of what turned out to be a 90-page paper on Privacy and First Amendment, and with each draft, I learned so much from Professor Cox. My critical thinking skills were sharpened, and my writing became crisp. He was patient and kind, and to this day, I have hanging on my office wall the letter he sent upon receiving and grading the completed draft of my tome. It begins “I read your paper on Individual Privacy and the First Amendment with interest and pleasure…”I will forever think of him with great fondness.  What law school course did you enjoy the most? [KMM] To be honest, I wasn’t sure I enjoyed many of them at all! Not knowing any lawyers, I didn’t really know what I was getting into. Then, as I began my third and final year, possessed of the fear that I had made a terrible mistake, I enrolled in the criminal clinic at BU. In this class, not only did I study criminal law and procedure, but I was assigned to represent actual clients in Boston city court! It was the pivotal moment in my law school career–as soon I as went to court the first time, I knew exactly what I wanted to do with my law degree.  What are your primary areas of writing and teaching? What fascinates you about these areas of law? [KMM] Both my 30 years of practice, and 13 years of teaching have been focused on criminal defense. In recent years, my research interests have turned to issues of mass incarceration and restorative justice. Our current system of retributive justice (where we lock people up for as long as we possibly can) is out of sync with the rest of the civilized world, deeply flawed, and unsustainable. I am committed to preserving individual rights in the criminal justice system, and to advancing more restorative practices for those who violate the law.  Do (or did) you have a mentor, or someone that has inspired or encouraged you in your writing or teaching? [KMM] Making the jump from practice to teaching has been challenging and inspiring. When I was the head of the Criminal Justice Program at the University of St. Joseph in West Hartford, CT, I had the chance to work with, learn from, and observe many fine, career scholars. It was there I met the most persuasive professor have ever worked with, Tracey-Anne Robinson. Professor Robinson’s class were a powerful mix of experiential and lecture format, with deep engagement by her students. It is something I strive to emulate in my own classes. Teaching in the military presents particular challenges, but there are many opportunities for a civilian attorney to deliver training which excites and motivates, and that is what I work for every day.  What motivated you to write a textbook? [KMM] I was approached by a business partner to collaborate on the book. It was an enormous project, but a labor of love. Being able to compile my 30 years of bare knuckled, hard knocks trial tips, and insider tricks into a textbook to help law students and lawyers become more confident in a courtroom is dream come true. I truly hope the book encourages more lawyers to take their cases to the jury.  What has been the most influential or pivotal moment in your career? [KMM] My career has been nothing short of amazing. It has been filled with twists and turns, success and some failure. I have been a public defender, television talking head, private hired gun personal injury lawyer, matrimonial attorney, CEO of two legal service non-profit organizations, full time professor, and now expert trial consultant for the US Navy. It has all been more than I could ever have dreamed for myself! What changes in legal education excite you? [KMM] The change in legal education toward experiential learning is very exciting. Lots of long-in-the-tooth lawyers joke that law school doesn’t teach you anything about practicing law, and they used to be right. The shift toward mandatory experiential learning, and mandatory public service hours for lawyers, means graduates will be better prepared to practice law when they graduate and can begin to add value and change lives on day one. What advice do you have for today’s law students? [KMM] The opportunity to attend law school is rare, and life changing. Learning to “think like a lawyer" positions you to change lives, for the better. In every community in this country, there is someone others refer to as “Counselor." Don’t take that lightly. It is the job of every lawyer to occupy a place of trust in their community, and to use the skills taught in law school to guide, counsel, and when necessary, fight for others. We are guardians of individual liberties, and enforcers of protocol, rules, and laws for those who would otherwise be trodden over. Learn your craft well, study hard, and when you go out in to the world, work long hours to do good. Leave the place better than you found it.  How do you hope to be remembered by your students or law school? [KMM] As someone who cared about the law, about the lawyers, and about the clients. I am passionate about what I do, but I try not to take myself too seriously. I am just a kid who came from little and has made a good life using my law degree. I sometimes still feel like “if they find out who I really am….they are gonna kick me outta this club! “I hope I am remembered as smart, kind, good natured, and generous with my knowledge and time. What are your interests outside of law? [KMM] I love to cook, and I am always trying out new recipes. I also spend a lot of time with my dog and traveling.  Kathleen M. Mullin is the author of the new Wolters Kluwer coursebook, Advocacy Excellence: The Jury Trial.
Read more
Erwin Chemerinsky random
Erwin Chemerinsky
We asked Erwin Chemerinsky, Dean & Jesse H. Choper Distinguished Professor of Law at UC Berkeley School of Law, what has inspired and motivated him throughout his career. This author spotlight gives a glimpse into his passions and what brought him to where he is today. What or who motivated you to study law? [EC] I wanted to be a civil rights lawyer. I believed then—and believe now—that law is the most powerful tool for social change. Did you have a favorite professor in law school? If so, who was the person and what made them stand out? [EC] My two favorite professors were Mort Horwitz and Larry Tribe. They both were terrific classroom teachers, and they both cared about their students. What law school course did you enjoy the most? [EC] Constitutional law What are your primary areas of writing and teaching? What fascinates you about these areas of law? [EC] I write in the areas of constitutional law, federal jurisdiction, and criminal procedure. These are all areas of law that affect people, often in the most intimate and important aspects of their lives. Do (or did) you have a mentor, or someone who has inspired or encouraged you in your writing or teaching? [EC] I was very fortunate at every law school I have taught to have wonderful colleagues to discuss and read my work: Jeff Shaman and Steve Siegel when I started teaching at DePaul; Larry Simon and Scott Bice at USC; Neil Seigel and Chris Schroeder at Duke; Mario Barnes and Jennifer Chacon at UC Irvine. What motivated you to write a casebook? [EC] Most of all, it is so I can have the book I want to teach from. But also it is a way of educating many more students than will be in my classes. What has been the most influential or pivotal moment in your career? [EC] When I taught my first day in August 1980, I realized that this is what I want to do for the rest of my career. What changes in legal education excite you? [EC] The increased emphasis on experiential education, especially clinical education. What advice do you have for today’s law students? [EC] Find happiness, indeed find joy, in law school and then in the practice of law. We all spend too much of our lives at work—and have worked too hard to get here—to settle for anything less. How do you hope to be remembered by your students or law school? [EC] As a teacher who cared about them What are your interests outside of law? [EC] Spending time with my four children and two grandchildren. I also am a sports fan—a lifelong Cubs fan and have had a part of seasons’ tickets to the Dodgers and Clippers for over 25 years. Erwin Chemerinsky is the Dean & Jesse H. Choper Distinguished Professor of Law at UC Berkeley School of Law, as well as author of: Constitutional Law, Fifth EditionConstitutional Law: Principles and Policies, Fifth EditionFederal Jurisdiction, Seventh EditionCriminal Procedure, Third Edition with co-author Laurie L. LevensonCriminal Procedure: Investigation, Third Edition with co-author Laurie L. LevensonCriminal Procedure: Adjudication, Third Edition with co-author Laurie L. LevensonAs well as several Case and Statutory Supplements
Read more
Linda Edwards random
Linda Edwards
We asked Linda Edwards, E.L. Cord Foundation Professor of Law at UNLV William S. Boyd School of Law, what has inspired and motivated her throughout her career. This author spotlight gives a glimpse into her passions and what brought her to where she is today. What or who motivated you to study law? [LE] After college, I was a high school teacher for a few years, but I knew I wanted to go to graduate school. I considered English and History, but thought those would be mostly “ivory tower” subjects. I wanted to study something with more real-world impact, and that sounded like law. I had never met a lawyer and never even heard of a woman lawyer (this was the early 1970s), so it sounded like a strange and scary idea, but I thought I could withdraw after the first semester if it didn’t go well. As it turned out, frightened as I was, I loved it. Did you have a favorite professor in law school?  If so, who was the person and what made them stand out? [LE] All my teachers were good in their own ways, but the one I remember most is the late Neil P. Cohen, who taught my Criminal Law course. Professor Cohen used some surprising methods to make the subject real to us. He arranged an optional “spend a night in jail,” so we’d learn a bit about what our clients might experience. When we were studying “attempt,” he actually brought a gun to class. (Obviously, don’t try this today!) He called on me, seated in the back row, to ask how close to the act one had to get in order to constitute an attempt. He began to approach me with the gun, asking with every few steps, “Is this close enough yet?” Soon I was saying, “Yes, that’s definitely close enough.” I’ll never forget the policy lesson: that an inclusive definition of attempt might help prevent the more serious crime.  What law school course did you enjoy the most? [LE] I liked them all. Even the ones I thought would be boring turned out to be interesting, and that continued to be true throughout my whole career. All legal subjects are complicated and implicate important policy rationales. They construct our civil society in ways we often don’t recognize. It doesn’t take much scratching of the surface before those crucial policy questions become visible, and that’s endlessly interesting. Sadly, the course I liked least was legal writing, because the legal writing revolution hadn’t happened yet. I’m so glad it did.  What are your primary areas of writing and teaching? What fascinates you about these areas of law? [LE] I love to explore written persuasion, especially the many roles of narrative. My favorite course is an advanced writing course called “Briefs that Changed the World,” where we study various methods of persuasion and some of the Supreme Court briefs that used those methods to actually change our world. After teaching the course a few times, I wrote the text for the course (published by Wolters Kluwer). Every year, when I teach that course, I learn more – from the briefs and from my students’ reactions and observations. It’s inspiring to know that brief writers really can (and do) change the world. Do (or did) you have a mentor, or someone that has inspired or encouraged you in your writing or teaching? [LE] My most important mentors have been the many members of the community of legal writing professors. They’ve taught me how to think about legal writing and how to teach it in a variety of settings. They’ve encouraged me to find ways to deepen our understanding of both predictive analysis and persuasion. Together, over the last 30+ years, we’ve built a discipline with both sophisticated intellectual foundations and real-world significance.    What motivated you to write a legal writing text? [LE] After a few years of teaching, I came to believe that students could learn better if we did more with three things: (1) rule structures (e.g., a list of required elements or a set of factors or a balancing test); (2) the key forms of legal reasoning (rule-based, analogy, policy-based, and narrative); and organizing the syllabus so we can intervene earlier, according to the stages in the writing process. I wanted a text that would support those three goals, so I wrote my first legal writing text, “Legal Writing: Process, Analysis, and Organization.” It has just come out in its 7th edition – slimmed down for today’s experienced teachers and reading-resistant students, but still focusing on those same three foundations.   What has been the most influential or pivotal moment in your career? [LE] Being hired by Tony Amsterdam to join the NYU Lawyering Program. Tony had faith in me despite my lack of a flashy resume or influential connections. It was a stroke of luck that defined everything from that point on. What changes in legal education excite you? [LE] The increasing emphasis on experiential education. Traditional legal education has tried to divide the learning of “substantive” or “doctrinal” information from the ability to use that information. But all credible learning theories demonstrate that the division simply isn’t possible. A student doesn’t really know the law of wills without learning to draft a will. As we bring together these two artificially separated parts of the academy, we’ll be better teachers and also better scholars.   What advice do you have for today’s law students?  [LE] Remember that your professional reputation begins on Day 1 of law school. And in the final analysis, your reputation will be your most important professional asset. Build it wisely and well. How do you hope to be remembered by your students or law school? [LE] I’d love to be remembered as a good teacher, a good scholar, and a caring colleague – a simple but ambitious goal.    What are your interests outside of law?  [LE] I read mysteries, especially those with strong female characters, and I enjoy mysteries on TV, especially those set in other countries. I like to cook when I have a little extra time. Since my husband and I became (mostly) vegan, I’ve had a whole new set of recipes to try and skills to learn. Someday I hope to own a piano again, and when that day comes, I’ll dust off my old red John Thompson books and see what I can remember.
Read more
Jens David Ohlin random
Jens David Ohlin
We asked Jens David Ohlin, Vice Dean and Professor of Law at Cornell Law School, what has inspired and motivated him throughout his career. This author spotlight gives a glimpse into his passions and what brought him to where he is today. What or who motivated you to study law? [JDO] I was motivated to study law when I learned of the ethnic cleansing and war crimes occurring in Kosovo during the summer of 1998. I was living in New York City and there was a heat wave that summer and I couldn’t afford air-conditioning. I couldn’t sleep so I would stay up all night watching ABC news, which covered the atrocities on a daily basis.  It was painful to see that criminal law seemed utterly absent from the scene and incapable of either constraining conduct or imposing responsibility. So, I applied to law school. I started to think about the conditions for a viable system of criminal justice and what happens when those conditions are not satisfied, either globally or locally. These concerns will occupy my entire career. Did you have a favorite professor in law school?  If so, who was the person and what made them stand out? [JDO] George Fletcher. He was an inspiring pedagogue. He is a man of big ideas who influenced me in many ways. First, he is a comparativist who likes to consider the various approaches to criminal law in different legal cultures. This framework is attractive since American criminal law is inherently comparative; there are many different approaches among the 50 states. Second, he is interested in the deep structure of the criminal law, or what he calls the “grammar” of criminal law. This influenced my own approach to understanding the criminal law. Third, he cared about criminal law theory. More specifically, he cared about the relationship between philosophical theories and how the legal doctrine is applied on the ground in real cases. As someone with a Ph.D. in philosophy, this approach appealed to me. What law school course did you enjoy the most? [JDO] Probably Constitutional Law–Separation of Powers, with Henry Monaghan. Although my teaching and research specialty is criminal law, we are in a historical moment where all lawyers need to have an understanding of, and appreciation for, our divided form of government, and the Madisonian checks and balances that make it possible. In these troubled times, I find myself thinking back on the fundamental issues and ideas that we debated in that course. What are your primary areas of writing and teaching? What fascinates you about these areas of law? [JDO] Criminal Law, International Law, and International Criminal Law. I think of criminal law and international as foundational subjects that serve as “parents” and their “child” is international criminal law, which involves a mixture of both fields of law. Sometimes the intermingling of the two parents is controversial and contested because they are based on entirely different paradigms. Criminal law is inherently individualistic: assigning blame and imposing punishment on individuals for their wrongdoing. In contrast, international law is mostly collective: what rights and obligations do nation-states have? The creation of a sub-discipline that straddles this fundamental divide produces complex puzzles that are hard to resolve. Do (or did) you have a mentor, or someone that has inspired or encouraged you in your writing or teaching? [JDO] Although George Fletcher was my major influence in criminal law, I would say that I drew great inspiration regarding law school pedagogy from Peter Strauss, who taught Legal Methods at Columbia Law School.  It was the first class I ever took in law school, and now when I am teaching criminal law at Cornell Law School and pressing my students to develop better legal arguments—to apply the law to a given set of facts—I find myself channeling Peter Strauss. What motivated you to write a Criminal Law casebook? [JDO] I had several discussions with my Wolters Kluwer sales representative. We started discussing what I wanted to see in a criminal law casebook, and she remarked that I seemed to have well developed ideas about the content and organization of an ideal criminal law casebook. She said I should consider transforming my abstract ideas into a casebook. I took her suggestion seriously and I am very glad that I did. Although it was hard work, it was a pleasure to write Criminal Law: Doctrine, Application, and Practice. And the revision process (for the second edition) was equally rewarding. What has been the most influential or pivotal moment in your career? [JDO] I met Nino Cassese. He was President (chief judge) of the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY). He introduced me to criminal law scholars around the world. At the time, I was a nobody (still a student, in fact) but he was generous with his time and energy and had a well-deserved reputation for supporting younger scholars at the beginning of their careers. I was definitely a recipient of that largesse. Because of that connection, I was introduced to criminal law scholars in Germany, The Netherlands, England, Italy, Argentina, Colombia, Israel. It was a global community of scholars. Nino later became chair of the UN Commission of Inquiry on Darfur. He was also chief judge of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon, a criminal tribunal in The Hague, but his service there was cut short when he was cruelly taken by cancer in 2011. What changes in legal education excite you? [JDO] I think there is an increasing focus on classroom pedagogy. A generation ago, there was a sense that scholarship mattered most for professors and that any professor who focused on teaching was just a failed scholar. This notion was not ridiculous and offensive, but also unethical because professors have a professional duty to be the best classroom teachers that they can be. One of the things I like about Cornell Law School is that classroom teaching is taken so seriously. Everyone is talking about pedagogy, what works and what doesn’t, experiments and refinements tried and refined over many semesters. The standards for classroom excellence are high.  And I think this is reflective of a positive trend across legal academia. It is one of the reason that I wrote Criminal Law: Doctrine, Application, and Practice. I wanted to write materials that help professors give their students the best outcome possible. What advice do you have for today’s law students?  [JDO] I always tell my law school students to study the subjects that excite them. This is the last chance they will have to study a subject before entering their professional careers, and they should seize that moment. I tell them that it is very hard to predict in advance which subjects in the law school catalog will best prepare them for their career, which might take several unexpected turns over many decades. Better to follow your passion and study what excites you. Also, students are often guided by rumors and received wisdom about which subjects are “mandatory” or “necessary” for a successful career.  The reality is that career paths are far more capricious and often an interesting course taken during 2L or 3L will have surprising relevance many years later. There is no single path to success. How do you hope to be remembered by your students or law school? [JDO] I want to be remembered as a teacher who approached criminal law with a real passion for the subject, and who effectively communicated that passion to them in the classroom. I often remind my students that these are real cases with real victims and real defendants.  So much is at stake. Victims have been horribly wronged and traumatized, and in murder cases, the wrong is one that can never be redressed. Defendants are facing lengthy prison terms, sometimes life in prison or even execution. The results matter. As lawyers (and moral agents) we have an obligation to get this right. What are your interests outside of law?  [JDO] I love to cook for my family.
Read more
Philip G. Schrag random
Philip G. Schrag
We asked Philip G. Schrag, Director, Center for Applied Legal Studies and Delaney Family Professor of Public Interest Law at Georgetown University Law Center, what has inspired and motivated him throughout his career. This author spotlight gives a glimpse into his passions and what brought him to where he is today. What or who motivated you to study law? [PGS] I strive for a world that is always moving toward peace, tolerance, and greater equality. In college I realized that law is the arena in which people are constantly pushing for or against these goals, whether through legislation, administrative action (or inaction) or judicial decisions. Did you have a favorite professor in law school?  If so, who was the person and what made them stand out? [PGS] Charles Black was my most inspiring law school teacher.  He asked deep questions, and in his spare time he volunteered to work on cases for the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, the legal staff of which I joined when I graduated from law school. A few years later, I had the great pleasure of working with him as a colleague in an unsuccessful effort to persuade Congress to authorize federal courts to hear consumer class actions in which the amount of the claim, when aggregated, met the jurisdictional limit for diversity cases. What law school course did you enjoy the most? [PGS] There were two: Constitutional law, taught by Charles Black, and Legal Journalism, taught by Fred Rodell.  I never taught or wrote about constitutional law, but the legal journalism course has probably influenced everything I write, even for law reviews. What are your primary areas of writing and teaching? What fascinates you about these areas of law? [PGS] I have written about many topics, but the unifying framework is public interest law. Aside from the casebook Ethical Problems in the Practice of Law, most of my writing during the last decade has been about asylum law and particularly asylum adjudication. I’ve written or co-authored four books on asylum and am currently working on a book on the legal efforts to challenge the federal government’s detention of immigrant children. Do (or did) you have a mentor, or someone that has inspired or encouraged you in your writing or teaching? [PGS] The first person to encourage my writing was my 8th grade teacher, Mrs. Costello. Prodded by her, I entered Junior Scholastic’s national short story writing contest. I won first prize, so my very first publication was “The Rock,” published in Junior Scholastic in 1957. What motivated you to write a casebook? [PGS] My amazing wife Lisa. She was an experienced ethics teacher and well-established author in the field of legal ethics. When Wolters Kluwer offered her a casebook contract, she decided that she wanted me as a co-author. I turned her down repeatedly, but she was so persuasive that eventually I studied the field, taught the course, and joined her on the book. What has been the most influential or pivotal moment in your career? [PGS] In 2001, I published a law review article advocating the creation of what eventually became the federal Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program. For the next six years, I worked with the ABA, the Association of American Law Schools, Senator Edward Kennedy, and Representative John Sarbanes, to help persuade Congress to create this program, which was finally enacted into law in 2007. Since then it has benefited thousands of nurses, social workers, teachers, public defenders, legal aid lawyers, prosecutors and others who have made careers working for governments or non-profit organizations. That’s probably the single most important event in my almost 50 years of teaching and writing. What changes in legal education excite you? [PGS] The most important change in legal education in my lifetime was the creation of clinical education, which I regard as the most meaningful and mind-expanding aspect of legal education after the first year of law school. Half of my work every year is clinical education, and it has been for as long as I have been teaching. What advice do you have for today’s law students?  [PGS] Take a clinic. Read Judge Patrick J. Shiltz’s famous article, “On Being a Happy, Healthy, and Ethical Member of an Unhappy, Unhealthy, and Unethical Profession,” 52 Vand. L. Rev. 871 (1999), or at least the two excerpts from it that appear in Ethical Problems in the Practice of Law. Have a good life, but don’t forget about justice. How do you hope to be remembered by your students or law school? [PGS] As a law teacher who was also a public interest lawyer. What are your interests outside of law?  [PGS] I travel to total eclipses of the sun, play racquetball as often as possible, and snorkel on the planet’s rapidly disappearing coral reefs. Everyone should see the amazing creatures that inhabit the waters of New Guinea before it’s too late. Philip G. Schrag is the Director, Center for Applied Legal Studies and Delaney Family Professor of Public Interest Law at Georgetown University Law Center. He and his co-author, Lisa G. Lerman, are the authors of the following Wolters Kluwer titles: Ethical Problems in the Practice of Law, Concise Fourth Edition (2018)Ethical Problems in the Practice of Law, Fourth Edition (2016)Ethical Problems in the Practice of Law: Model Rules, State Variations, and Practice Questions, 2017 and 2018 Edition
Read more
Amy E. Sloan random
Amy E. Sloan
We asked Amy E. Sloan, Professor of Law at the University of Baltimore School of Law, what has inspired and motivated her throughout her career. This author spotlight gives a glimpse into her passions and what brought her to where she is today. What or who motivated you to study law? [AES] I worked in the financial industry after I graduated from college. After I had been in my job for a couple of years, the stock market suffered a downturn. Opportunities for advancement in that job became scarce, so I was looking for something new to do. I started studying for the LSAT at night after work, went to law school, and never looked back. Did you have a favorite professor in law school?  If so, who was the person and what made them stand out? [AES] I was fortunate to have many great professors, role models for me to this day. It would be too hard to pick out just one.  What law school course did you enjoy the most? [AES] I liked a lot of classes, but I think my favorite was Civil Rights Legislation, taught by the late Professor Thomas Dienes. The class was especially challenging, but he was so intensely passionate about the material that he made me want to learn it all. What are your primary areas of writing and teaching? What fascinates you about these areas of law? [AES] I write about legal research, legal writing, and appellate procedure. I love thinking about how we solve problems, and all of these topics allow me to explore the steps lawyers go through as they move from problem to solution. Legal research in particular is especially exciting. I don’t think any area of law has gone through as much change in the past generation. Writing about research lets me learn something new every day. Do (or did) you have a mentor, or someone that has inspired or encouraged you in your writing or teaching? [AES] Different people have mentored me at different points in my career. My students have inspired me with their enthusiasm and inquisitiveness. I am constantly in awe of how much law librarians know and how willing they are to share their expertise. Legal research and writing professors across the country support and mentor each other in many ways, and I’ve been the beneficiary of that community’s generosity. What motivated you to write a Legal Research text? [AES] When I first started teaching, I saw my students struggle with research – not only the mechanics, but also the larger questions of how to plan a strategy, where to start, and when to stop. I created materials to use in class, and those became the basis for Basic Legal Research. What has been the most influential or pivotal moment in your career? [AES] Clerking for two judges at the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland—first the Honorable William Nickerson and then the Honorable Edward Northrop. I learned a lot about the law and about the value of civility in legal practice. Both judges made a point of treating litigants, counsel, and court staff with respect, and that made a strong impression on me. What changes in legal education excite you? [AES] Legal education is different now than it was when I was in school. There is less of the Professor as the Ultimate Authority at the front of the classroom. Instead, it feels much more participatory. I love legal education as a collaborative experience with students. What advice do you have for today’s law students?  [AES] Figure out what you want to get from your legal education and make sure you get it. Don’t just go through the motions to get your degree. Try to have some fun. How do you hope to be remembered by your students or law school? [AES] I would like to be remembered as someone who helps students reach their potential and who supports colleagues in their professional endeavors.    What are your interests outside of law?  [AES] Traveling, cooking, reading, working crossword puzzles. I love going to the beach. I am learning to play the drums. I aspire to be a fiction writer but haven’t fit that into my life yet! Amy E. Sloan is a Professor of Law at the University of Baltimore School of Law and is author of the following titles: Basic Legal Research: Tools and Strategies, Seventh EditionBasic Legal Research Workbook, Fifth EditionResearching the Law:  Finding What You Need When You Need It, Second Edition
Read more

Have a question?

We are here to help. Aspen’s Help Center has a wide array of support topics and tutorials covering all of our major products and platforms. If you need more personalized help, reach out directly to our Customer Support team through the contact link below.