Cecil C. Humphreys School of Law
Advocacy News January 2012

coachkby Barbara Kritchevsky, Director of Advocacy and Cecil C. Humphreys Professor of Law

The spring of 2011 was one of the most successful semesters ever for Memphis Law travel teams!

2011 Thurgood Marshall Mock Trial National Champions

Memphis Law won its first national Mock Trial championship ever this spring when Memphis won the 2011 Thurgood Marshall Mock Trial Competition in Houston.  The team members were LaChina Algers, Angela Harris, Chandra Madison, and Joseph McKinney.  The team defeated teams from Harvard, Texas Wesleyan, DePaul, Seattle, and St. Mary’s on the run to the championship.  Memphis joined seventeen other teams, the top three teams from each region, in the national finals.  Memphis first competed in the Raleigh, North Carolina region and defeated teams including Faulkner and Cumberland Law School.  Melanie Murry of the University General Counsel’s Office was the team coach.  Memphis Law alumna and former Thurgood Marshall team member Bridgett Stigger (JD 10) assisted. Read an article about the team in The Commercial Appeal.

(Pictured from left: Bridgett Stigger (coach), LaChina Algers, Chandra Madison, Joseph McKinney, Angela Harris, and Coach Melanie Stovall Murry)

2010-11 Moot Court Travel Team success

Duberstein Bankruptcy Final Four

The Duberstein Bankruptcy Law Moot Court team of Randall Noel and Jennifer Sutch took third place in the 2011 Duberstein Competition, besting 45 teams!  This is Memphis’ best finish in the Duberstein competition.  Memphis fielded two Duberstein teams for the first time. Its second Duberstein team, Bill O’Connor and Lauren Siegel, received an honorable mention brief award.  Memphis Law alum, Mark Wright(JD 01), was the team’s coach.  The Bankruptcy section of the Memphis Bar Association generously funds the Duberstein teams.

(Pictured from left: Jennifer Sutch and Randall Noell)

ABA National Appellate Advocacy Competition National Sweet Sixteen

The 2010-11 3L ABA team of Tracy Bradshaw and Grace Whiting reached the Sweet Sixteen of the National Finals of the ABA National Appellate Advocacy Competition in Chicago.  The team beat Duke and Charleston in the preliminary rounds, but then lost a close split decision to Texas Tech in the Sweet Sixteen.  Jake Hubbell was the third, brief-writing, member of the team.  Tracy and Grace reached the National Finals after advancing undefeated through the Seattle Regional.  They defeated teams from Houston, Southwestern, and Chicago-Kent in the Regional preliminary rounds and then eliminated Thomas Cooley and Loyola Los-Angeles to advance to Chicago.  Tracy and Grace also reached the National Finals last year.

(Pictured from left: John Michael Ryall, Coach Barbara Kritchevsky, Grace Whiting, Jake Hubbell, Tracy Bradshaw, Megan Fuller, and Jo Waddell)

The 2L ABA team, Megan Fuller, John-Michael Ryall, and Jo Waddell, also did very well in the Seattle Region, but unfortunately, did not advance despite great oral scores.  Jo received recognition as the ninth best advocate in the thirty-odd team region.

The teams enjoyed great support from alumni, faculty, and students in preparing for the competition.  A stellar panel of Leo Bearman, and alums Kim Hodges (JD 00), Steve Likens (JD 88) and Steve Parker (JD 05) judged the pre-Nationals dress rehearsal.  Dean Kevin Smith, Professor Lynda Black, Ross Dyer, Michael Goodin (JD 08), Blake Neill (JD 10), Tim Perkins (JD 05), and Assistant Dean Estelle Winsett (JD 97) judged the pre-Regionals dress rehearsals.  Professor Barbara Kritchevsky, Director of Advocacy, coached the ABA teams.

Other 2010-11 Travel Team news

Wagner Labor & Employment Law Moot Court Team
Emily Blaiss, Rachel Hayes, and Emily Long represented Memphis in the Wagner Labor & Employment Law Moot Court Competition in New York.  The team had great rounds, but did not advance due to a mix-up in scoring.  Tim Perkins ’05 was the team coach.

National Mock Trial
Memphis fielded two teams in the National Mock Trial regional competition in Charlotte, North Carolina.  Team members were Sean Day, Zach Glaser, Jamie Kidd, Chandra Madison, Atina Rizk, and Jordan Russell.  Despite a great showing, the teams did not advance.  Professors Kate and Danny Schaffzin were the teams’ coaches.

2010-11 In-School Competitions

Mock Trial
Congratulations to Daniel Cossey and Sarah Spitzer on winning the Mock Trial Competition!  Daniel and Sarah defeated Eric Mogy in a closely-contested championship round before judges Chris Craft, Steve Shankman, Laura Rogers, Vicki Jones, Doug Halijan, Thomas Cassidy, and Professor Danny Schaffzin.  The win made Cossey/Spitzer one of the moot court program’s most successful teams; they won the Freshman Moot Court two years ago. 

In other Mock Trial awards, Daniel Cossey was named best advocate of the competition and Cara Howe was runner-up.  Will Hackett was best 2L advocate and Kara Youngblood was runner-up.  Best trial notebook went to Angela Griffith and Daniel Hamilton; Aaron Perry and Ryan Hagenbrok were runners-up.  Matt Crigger and Marshall Digmon had the best motion; Meredith Lucas and Lindsey Watson were runners-up.  Associate Justice Sean Day ran the competition.

Freshman Competition
Congratulations to Booke Stevens and Brigid Welsh for winning the largest in-school competition, Freshman Moot Court.  Stevens/Welsh defeated Jay Clifton and Katy Parrish in the finals.  Welsh was best advocate for the competition and Parrish was runner-up.  In addition to the four finalists, Raz Axente, Joshua Baker, Julie Bigsby, Nathan Cate, Zach Jones, and Libby Rogers received recognition as the competition’s best advocates.  The problem concerned the First Amendment rights of high-school students.  An excellent panel consisting of Tennessee Supreme Court Justice Janice Holder, Tricia Herzfeld of the ACLU, and Valerie Speakman, General Counsel for the Memphis City Schools, judged the final round.  Associate Justice Aaron Perry ran the competition.

Advocacy Awards
There are two advocacy awards for graduating seniors – the Joe Moore Award and the Deal Cooper Holton Trial Advocacy Award.  Jamie Kidd won the Joe Moore Award, which recognizes the graduate who most excelled in moot court and mock trial competitions, contributions to the Board, and success in evidence and advocacy courses.  LaChina Algers won the Deal Cooper Holton Trial Advocacy Award.

2011-12 Moot Court Board news

The 2010-11 Moot Court Board Executive Committee, now our recent grads – Chief Justice Jamie Kidd, Associate Chief Justice Joseph McKinney, and AJs Andrew Pate, Sean Day, and Aaron Perry – ended their highly-successful year at the Moot Court banquet in April 2011.  The Board unveiled a Board Member of the Year Award, going to the board member not on the executive committee who contributed most to the success of the board.  The inaugural winner was LaChina Algers, in recognition of her work securing judges as the Board’s Professional Liaison. 

The 2011-12 Board has been hard at work.  Elisabeth Toecker is the current Chief Justice and Rebecca Hinds in the current Associate Chief Justice.  Jennifer Sutch is the Associate Justice for Advanced, Jordan Russell for Mock Trial, and Monica Timmerman for Freshman.   Other new Board members are Madeline Bertasi, Patricia Blount, Hillary Edwards, Joey Friedman, Megan Fuller, William Hackett, Ryan Hagenbrok, Rachel Hayes, Jasmine Johnson, Rachel Kelly, Emily Long, Allison McKnight, Andrew Mills, John-Michael Ryall, and Carlissa Shaw.

National Trial Competition
The Board is also hard at work planning for the 37th National Regional Trial Competition, which we will host February 17-19, 2012.  30 teams are coming to Memphis to compete, so this will be quite an undertaking.  Professor Donna Harkness is the faculty administrator; student administrators are Patty Blount and Allison McKnight.  Rounds will be held at the County Courthouse and the law school.  We will need judges and financial support.  Please contact the Moot Court Board at mootcourt@memphis.edu if you can help in any way!

Stay in touch
The Board is trying to update its lists of potential judges in advance of the National Mock Trial Competition and is contacting known supporters.  If you receive a questionnaire, please return it.  If you don’t receive one, please call (678-2679) or email the Board (mootcourt@memphis.edu) and ask for one.  We want to stay in touch.

Stay up-to-date on all the Board, Competition, and Travel Team news by following us on Twitter and Facebook.  Follow www.twitter.com/MemphisCoachK and www.twitter.com/MemphisMootCt and follow University of Memphis Moot Court on Facebook.Thanks to everyone involved in the moot court program!

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