Fall 2020

Beauty image of the Law School Reading Room

Introducing the Valiant

The Valiant
The Valiant

The Valiant, a new storytelling event in the vein of The Moth, brought together public interest students to celebrate reasons for pursuing their chosen career path, and featured stories from Alex Gilewicz, Hetali Lodaya (pictured), Meredith Reynolds, and Brenna Twohy, all 2020 graduates. The event was conceived by Lara Finkbeiner, ’13, public interest director in the Office of Career Planning, and was the last public event of the term before COVID-19 ended gatherings in the Quad.


Faculty Appointments and Promotions

Research Faculty

Roseanna Sommers has joined the faculty as an assistant professor of law. As a psychologist, her work is part of a growing interdisciplinary field known as “experimental jurisprudence,” which borrows empirical techniques from the social sciences to clarify core concepts in the law.

Emily Prifogle, a legal historian who researches the use and experience of law in rural areas and was Michigan Law’s first faculty fellow, has been named an assistant professor of law.

Experiential Education Faculty

Tim Murphy, ’08, a specialist in business law and intellectual property law, has been named a clinical assistant professor of law in the Entrepreneurship Clinic.

Imran Syed, ’11, who has served as assistant director of the Michigan Innocence Clinic, has joined the faculty as a clinical assistant professor of law.

Kerry Kornblatt has joined the Legal Practice Program as a clinical assistant professor of law. Prior to joining the Law School, she taught legal research and writing at Wayne State University School of Law.

Professors from Practice

Susan Page has joined the faculty as a professor from practice, bringing her decades of senior-level experience in the U.S. Department of State, the U.S. Agency for International Development, the United Nations, and non-governmental organizations to Michigan Law. She also holds a faculty appointment at U-M’s Ford School of Public Policy.

Caroline Humfress, director of the University of St Andrews’ Institute of Legal and Constitutional Research, has joined the faculty as a L. Bates Lea Global Professor of Law, a designation for professors who are on a faculty abroad, visit the Law Quad regularly, and enrich the Michigan Law curriculum with a global perspective.

John Petoskey, ’20, was appointed by Governor Gretchen Whitmer to the Michigan Advisory Council on Environmental Justice, a first-of-its-kind initiative in the state that seeks to provide community input on statewide environmental issues.


Katz Wins Wright

Ralph W. Aigler Professor of Law ELLEN KATZ received the 2020 L. Hart Wright Award for Excellence in Teaching. Katz joined the Law School in 1999, and writes and teaches about election law, civil rights remedies, and equal protection.


Caminker at the Sixth Circuit

In Gary B. v. Whitmer, Dean Emeritus and Branch Rickey Collegiate Professor of Law EVAN CAMINKER served as co-counsel in a case that argued that children have a constitutional right to a basic minimum education. 

The suit posited that five schools in the Detroit area were schools “in name only, characterized by slum-like conditions, and lacking the most basic educational opportunities that children elsewhere in Michigan— and throughout the nation—take for granted.” 

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit agreed, and ruled 2-1 in favor of the plaintiffs. That decision was vacated after the case became moot when the plaintiffs secured a favorable settlement.

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