Chicago-Kent College of Law: Alumni E-Brief
Alumni E-Brief
Dean Harold J. Krent

From the Dean

Planning for the Future

Soon after he assumed the presidency of IIT in August 2007, John Anderson announced the beginning of an institution-wide strategic planning process.  This process shifted into high gear in April of this year, and since then, more than six hundred faculty, staff, and students have provided input into a planning discussion now called “Many Voices, One Vision.” 

Here at Chicago-Kent, we have taken this opportunity to commence our own strategic planning process, one that explores possibilities for deeper collaboration with IIT but that also focuses on the law school’s particular strengths, circumstances, and goals.  In addition to forming a steering committee representing various departments such as Admissions, Career Services and Institutional Advancement, I have also asked the faculty to meet for a series of small-group discussions aimed at formulating a vision of where we want Chicago-Kent to be in the future.  We will be providing members of our Board of Overseers, Senior Partner Council and alumni groups various opportunities to join in this lively conversation; this effort will be coordinated by David Thompson, our new Director of Development and Strategic Initiatives. I look forward to communicating with you about progress in our planning process in the months to come.


Harold J. Krent
Dean and Professor of Law

More than 2 dozen undergraduate students participated in this year's Pre-Law Undergraduate Scholars (PLUS) Program, directed by Assistant Dean Francine Soliunas (front).

In This Issue

News and Announcements

Unique Summer Program Promotes Diversity in the Legal Profession

More than two dozen undergraduate students interested in legal careers are participating in a special four-week summer session at Chicago-Kent. The 7th annual Pre-Law Undergraduate Scholars (PLUS) Program is designed to provide college students exposure to the rigors of law school and contact with legal professionals.

The program is funded by support from the Law School Admission Council's $10 million diversity initiative. There is no charge to the PLUS scholars, who receive a stipend comparable to a summer internship and a transportation allowance.

During their month at Chicago-Kent, the PLUS scholars take courses adapted from the law school's curriculum taught by law school faculty. They visit courts, participate in a mock trial, learn about the law school admissions process, discuss career options, and meet leaders in the legal profession.

"At the end of the program, students are armed with the information necessary to pursue a legal education, if they choose," said program director Francine Soliunas. The success of the program was evidenced at the 2008 Chicago-Kent Commencement ceremony when two former PLUS Program participants received their Juris Doctor degrees.

Now Accepting Nominations for the 31st Annual Alumni Awards

The 2008-2009 Chicago-Kent Alumni Board of Directors is seeking nominations for the following awards (for full descriptions of the awards, please see the nomination form):

  • The Professional Achievement Award
  • The Distinguished Service Award
  • The Young Alumni Award
  • The Honorable Abraham Lincoln Marovitz Public Interest Law Awards
    (Note: these awards will be given in a separate ceremony.)

Make your nominations online for deserving alumni or outstanding members of the legal community no later than August 29, 2008, or call the Office of Alumni Relations at 312-906-5240 for a paper nomination form. The 31st Annual Alumni Awards & Recognition Luncheon is scheduled for December 11, 2008 at the Standard Club in Chicago. Invitations to follow in the fall.


What Defines a Great Law School?
Prof. Graeme B. Dinwoodie
Professor honored by the International Trademark Association

Professor Graeme B. Dinwoodie, Director of the Program in Intellectual Property Law, has been honored by the International Trademark Association (INTA).

Professor Dinwoodie was named the recipient of the 2008 Pattishall Medal for Teaching Excellence. In addition, he and Professor Mark D. Janis of the University of Iowa College of Law received the 2008 Ladas Memorial Award for their law review article, Confusion Over Use: Contextualism in Trademark Law, published last year in the Iowa Law Review. The awards were presented May 17 at a black-tie gala held during INTA’s 130th Annual Meeting in Berlin.

The Pattishall Medal for Teaching Excellence recognizes educators in the business and legal fields for outstanding instruction in the trademark and trade identity field. The annual Ladas Memorial Award is presented to the paper judged best on the subject of trademark law or a matter that directly relates to or affects trademarks.

A member of the Chicago-Kent faculty since 2000, Professor Dinwoodie teaches courses in Copyright Law, Trademark Law, International Intellectual Property Law, Conflict of Laws and Civil Procedure.

Professor honored by the U.S. District Court and Federal Bar Association

The Federal Bar Association recognized Professor Richard J. Gonzalez with an Award for Excellence in Public Interest at the 9th Annual Excellence in Pro Bono and Public Interest Service ceremony at the Everett McKinley Dirksen United States Courthouse.

Gonzalez was cited for his successful representation of a former employee of a suburban Chicago school district who allegedly was fired from his job because he was serving on a grand jury. "Jury service, like voting, is an obligation of citizenship," said Professor Gonzalez. "I have often heard stories about employers who try to prevent their employees from serving on juries. This rarely-used federal law prohibits employers from firing, threatening, intimidating or coercing employees to evade grand jury service. It is believed to be the first time it has been applied in the Chicago area."

As a clinical professor in Chicago-Kent’s Law Offices, Professor Gonzalez represents employees and employers in a wide variety of discrimination, wrongful discharge, and defamation cases in federal and state court and in anti-discrimination agencies.

What Defines a Great Law School?
David Thompson, Director of Development and Strategic Initiatives

Chicago-Kent Welcomes David Thompson

In May 2008, the Office of Institutional Advancement welcomed David Thompson as Director of Development & Strategic Initiatives. In this new position, David will be working with Dean Harold J. Krent and faculty members on planning new research projects and programs, as well as coordinating input by alumni and others into the strategic planning process that Chicago-Kent is initiating in tandem with IIT. In addition, David will also help Chicago-Kent achieve its fundraising goals.

Prior to joining the staff, David was Associate Dean for Planning & Programs in the Division of the Humanities at the University of Chicago, where his responsibilities included co-chairing the Universityís Sustainability Council. Previously, David worked as Associate Director of Gift Planning in the University of Chicagoís Office of Development and Alumni Relations, and as an associate attorney with the firm of Sachnoff & Weaver. After completing his Ph.D. at the University of Chicago, David earned his J.D. at Northwestern University. To share your ideas for Chicago-Kentís future, feel free to contact David at

Thank You for Your Support

Many thanks to alumni and friends who supported Chicago-Kent financially during fiscal 2008 which ended on May 31. In addition to more than 950 gifts to the Chicago-Kent Annual Fund, donors supported more than 50 other scholarship, program and faculty funds. The 2008 Honor Roll will be published in August and, for the first time, will be available on our website.  If you missed the May 31 deadline, you can make a gift in fiscal 2009 by visiting

New Issue of Seventh Circuit Review Now Available

Volume 3, issue 2, of the Seventh Circuit Review is now available online at Articles include analysis of recent decisions of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit in the areas of civil procedure, civil rights, criminal law, environmental law, Fourth Amendment law, privacy law, and trade secrets.

Join the Career Advisor Network!

One of the Chicago-Kent’s most valuable resources is the Career Advisor Network. As a Career Advisor you are searchable in the Online Community by students and recent graduates who are looking for assistance on such on issues such as practice trends, legal markets in specific geographic areas, and other career related topics.

To become a Career Advisor, visit Click on “My Account,” choose the “Career Advising” tab, and check the indicated box.

Not yet a part of the community?
Request your login information.

Save the Date

Social Events - Chicago

Post Bar Party
Thursday, July 30, 2008
5:30 - 8:00 p.m.
Rock Bottom Brewery, 1 W. Grand Ave., Chicago, IL 60610

Unwind from the Bar exam at our a Post Bar Party on Rock Bottom Brewery's Rooftop Deck. Enjoy appetizers, an open bar, prizes and more! All members of the 2008 graduating class are welcome, regardless of when you take the Bar exam.

2008 Graduates: FREE ~ All others: $10 at the door

RSVP at by July 25, 2008.

Alumni Night @ Wrigley Field
Wednesday, September 3, 2008
Pre-Game Gathering: 5:00 p.m. ~ Game: 7:05 p.m.
Cubby Bear, 1059 W. Addison, Chicago, IL 60613

Save the date for our annual Alumni Night @ Wrigley Field. Enjoy a Pre-Game Gathering at the Cubby Bear, which includes Dinner & Drinks beginning at 5:00 pm. Then, watch the Chicago Cubs take on the Houston Astros at Wrigley Field at 7:05 pm.

More information forthcoming. Invtations will be mailed in July.

Board of Overseers Meeting
Monday, September 22, 2008
3:30 p.m.
Chicago-Kent College of Law, 565 W Adams St., Chicago, IL 60661

For more information on the Chicago-Kent Board of Overseers, contact Lisa Turley at

Save the Date: Lewis Collens Atrium Unveiling
Monday, September 22, 2008
5:30 p.m.
Chicago-Kent College of Law, 565 W Adams St., Chicago, IL 60661

Please save the date to join us for the unveiling of the newly named atrium honoring Dean Emeritus of Chicago-Kent and President Emeritus of the Illinois Institute of Technology, Lewis Collens.

Click to Visit the Class of 1983 Reunion Page


Save the Date for the Class of 1983 25-Year Reunion
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
Rooftop Opens 6:30 p.m. ~ Game 7:05 p.m.
Wrigley Done Right Rooftop, 3621 N. Sheffield Ave., Chicago, IL 60613

Class of 1983: Catch up with your classmates at your 25-Year Reunion and enjoy watching the Chicago Cubs take on the Milwaukee Brewers. Invitations will be mailed in late July. More information forthcoming.

Visit your Reunion Page at

CLE Opportunities

The Last Chance CLE: A Survey of Professional Conduct & Commercial Law
Saturday, June 28, 2008
8:00 a.m. - 9:00 p.m.
Chicago-Kent College of Law, 565 W. Adams St., Chicago, IL 60661

Lawyers with last names A-M need to complete 20 IL-MCLE hours by June 30, 2008—Here's your last chance! Professor Michael Spak, one of America's favorite Bar Review lecturers will keep you interested (at least laughing) all day through his survey of Professional Conduct and Commercial Law. He'll even (try to) answer all your questions. Sit through it all, or any part that you need.

Attendees are eligible for up to 12.0 hours of MCLE Credit, including 4.0 hours of professionalism credit. For more information and to register, visit

Federal Sector Labor Relations & Labor Law Conference
September 18, 2008
8:45 a.m. - 4:45 p.m.
Chicago-Kent College of Law, 565 W. Adams St., Chicago, IL 60661

Chicago-Kent College of Law presents the 26th annual gathering of the longest running conference on federal sector and postal labor relations and labor law held outside of Washington, D.C. The keynote panel topic will be “ Speaking Truth to Power: Messages for the Next Administration.” Session topics will include MSPB, EEO, FLRA, USERRA, The Hatch Act in the Computer Age, and Labor Relations and Generational Differences.

Attendees are eligible for 6.0 Hours of IL MCLE credit. For more information and to register, visit

Click to View More Event Photos
Mike Stout, President of the American College of Trial Lawyers with the 2008 National Champion Moot Court Team: (L-R) Joanna Brinkman '08, Stout, Lalania Gilkey-Johnson '08, and Rachel Moran '08.

Past Event Highlights

Chicago-Kent Community Celebrates our 2008 National Champion Teams

Alumni, students, and friends of Chicago-Kent enjoyed a celebratory reception on June 11, 2008 to honor our 2008 National Champion Moot Court and Trial Advocacy Teams as well as the individual champions.

Mike Stout, President of the American College of Trial Lawyers (ACTL), the organization that hosts both competitions, presented trophies to the winning teams and individuals. Chicago-Kent holds the honor of being the first law school in the history of the ACTL to win both the Moot Court and Trial Advocacy Championships in the same year.

For more on our spectacular Moot Court and Trial Advocacy team records, please visit Photos of the event are available online at

Attorney General Lisa Madigan Addresses Graduates at the 2008 Commencement Ceremony
Trial Ad Picture
Hawaii Alumni (Back, L-R) Rep. Alex Sonson '93, Robert Martin '03, Ryan Wilson '06, Dean Harold J. Krent, (Front, L-R) Jennifer Correa Sonson '92, Allison Kirk Griffiths '03, and incoming student, Adela Deacon.

Illinois Attorney General, Lisa Madigan, delivered the commencement address at Chicago-Kent's 2008 ceremony on Sunday, May 18, 2008. Commencement was held in the Arie Crown Theater at the Lakeside Center of McCormick Place with a champagne reception following. This year, Chicago-Kent awarded 318 Juris Doctor degrees and 79 Master of Laws degrees. We are pleased to welcome the Class of 2008 into the Chicago-Kent Alumni Community.

Photos from the event are available on the Alumni Online Community at and a video of the ceremony can be viewed here.

Alumni Gather in Hawaii

Alumni in Hawaii joined Dean Harold J. Krent at the Hula Grill on Waikiki Beach, in Honolulu for an Alumni Reception on June 22, 2008.

Alumni also welcomed incoming 1L student from Hawaii, Adela Deacon.

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