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Dean Richard Moberly

Moberly Awarded the Warren K. Urbom Mentor Award

14 May 2019    

Dean Richard Moberly received the Robert Van Pelt American Inn of Court mentoring award – the Warren K. Urbom Mentor Award.

This award is presented annually to a Nebraska judge or attorney in appreciation for his or her contributions to the ideals of ethics, civility, professionalism, and legal skills. The award is named after Warren K. Urbom, a Senior United States District Judge for the District of Nebraska. Judge Urbom sponsored the creation of the Robert Van Pelt American Inn of Court and served as its administrator for 15 years. Judge Urbom was the first recipient of the award, which was presented to him on April 24, 2002, in recognition of his "example in and out of the courtroom as a person, lawyer and judge, making us strive to be the best we can be in how we think, speak, write and represent our profession."

Moberly is 18th recipient of this award. A list of past recipients is available on the American Inn of Court website.

Michelle Richart

Richart, '06, Joins Military Spouse JD Network

08 May 2019    

Michelle Richart, '06, has joined the Military Spouse JD Network (MSJDN) as the organization's community and events director for the 2019-2020 year. 

The MSJDN is a volunteer-run organization dedicated to supporting military families in the legal profession. An active Board of Directors oversees all of MSJDN’s programs and engagements that are then put into action by our committee leadership. 

Michelle is a native of Nebraska and a proud Cornhusker. She is a graduate of the University of Nebraska College of Law and is licensed in the State of Texas. Michelle works as corporate counsel for a software company and also practices immigration law, leveraging technology to work remotely for nearly a decade. Michelle was recently selected to become a member of the Air Force Reserves JAG Corp and is looking forward to a new challenge and serving in another capacity. She is a fierce advocate for military spouses and helped pass licensing accommodations for military spouse attorneys in Nevada in 2018. Michelle’s husband is a pilot in the Air Force and they are currently based at the United States Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs. Together they have two children, Piper and Pierce. In her free time, Michelle enjoys traveling, yoga, and roller derby.

Amanda Wall

Wall Awarded the 2019 Koley Jessen Entrepreneurship Award

07 May 2019    

The Weibling Entrepreneurship Clinic has selected Amanda Wall as the 2019 Koley Jessen Entrepreneurship Award recipient.

Wall graduated last week with the Class of 2019. During her time at Nebraska Law, Wall was auction chair and president of the Women's Law Caucus, a 1L client counseling competition champion, a member of the Community Legal Education Project and the Nebraska Moot Court Board, and she prepared tax returns for the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program. She was a student attorney in the Weibling Entrepreneurship Clinic during the fall semester.

The Koley Jessen Entrepreneurship Award was established to recognize Weibling Entrepreneurship Clinic students who have demonstrated exceptional legal skills, provided outstanding service to clients and furthered the mission of the Clinic. The firm was founded in 1988 with a vision of creating an environment that would foster trust and teamwork. Through the years, their guiding principles of integrity, client focus, and integrity have created the environment they envisioned years ago. Don Swanson, a partner in that firm, was instrumental in creating the endowed fund for this award. 

Nebraska Law

Eight Selected for Order of the Barristers

06 May 2019    

Eight graduates from the Class of 2019 have been selected for the University of Nebraska College of Law chapter of Order of the Barristers, a national honorary that recognizes students for their outstanding participation and performance as student advocates. These students have participated in Nebraska Law's advocacy programming, including trial team, moot court competitions, and the Advocacy in Mediation competition, among others.

The students selected are: Kelsey Arends, Ryan Coufal, Paul Henderson, Nathan Klein, Adam Kost, Maureen Larsen, Claire Monroe, and Chris Page.

Richard Moberly

Moberly Named Interim Executive Vice Chancellor

06 May 2019    

Dean Richard Moberly has been named interim executive vice chancellor at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln.

Chancellor Ronnie Green announced the appointment May 2. Moberly is replacing Donde Plowman who was named chancellor of the University of Tennessee on April 26. Moberly will assume the role of the executive vice chancellor on June 1.

“Richard is widely respected on campus and across higher education,” Green said. “He understands our university and is an experienced and decisive leader. I’m excited that Richard has agreed to step into this role because I know he’s going to do a great job.”

Moberly, who is the Richard C. and Catherine S. Schmoker Professor of Law, has taught at Nebraska since 2004 and was named dean in April 2017. He has also served the college as interim dean and associate dean.

“I am looking forward to working with Chancellor Green, my fellow deans and the terrific staff in academic affairs to continue the momentum of the university during the search for a new EVC,” Moberly said. “Of course, I will miss being at the College of Law every day, but I know it is in great hands. I look forward to returning to my role when a permanent EVC is on board."

Anna W. Shavers (second from left) will serve as acting dean of Nebraska Law while Richard Moberly works as the university's interim executive vice chancellor.
Anna W. Shavers will serve as acting dean of law while Moberly is the university’s chief academic officer. Shavers is the Cline Williams Professor of Citizenship Law and associate dean for diversity and inclusion for the college. She joined Nebraska Law faculty in 1989.

As part of the interim transition, oversight of the Office of Research and Economic Development, Student Affairs, and the Office of Diversity and Inclusion will shift to the chancellor.

Nebraska’s executive vice chancellor reports directly to the chancellor and is the responsible authority in the absence of the chancellor. The post directs the university’s academic enterprise and oversees the university’s nine colleges, graduate studies and the University Libraries.

In addition to teaching evidence and employment law courses, Moberly is an active scholar who researches issues related to whistleblowing and the law of secrecy. He has published numerous articles and book chapters on whistleblowing, including research on national security whistleblowers and codes of ethics, as well as an empirical study of Sarbanes-Oxley retaliation claims.

He has testified before the U.S. House of Representatives, spoken internationally on whistleblower protection, and also co-edited The International Handbook on Whistleblower Research (2014). The U.S. Secretary of Labor has twice appointed Moberly to the Whistleblower Protection Advisory Committee to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

Upperclass law students have voted Moberly “Professor of the Year” twice and he has also won the College Award for Distinguished Teaching. In 2014, the College of Law Alumni Council presented him with the Distinguished Faculty Award. He graduated magna cum laude from Harvard Law School, where he was an editor of the Harvard Law Review.
Adam Foss

Leading Voice on Criminal Justice Reform and Former Prosecutor to Address Class of 2019

29 Apr 2019    

The College of Law will conduct a commencement ceremony at 2 p.m. on Saturday, May 4 at the Lied Center for Performing Arts, 301 N. 12th St. Doors open at 1 p.m. Adam Foss, founder and executive director of Prosecutor Impact, will address the graduates.

Adam J. Foss is a former Assistant District Attorney in the Juvenile Division of the Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office (SCDAO) in Boston, MA, and a fierce advocate for criminal justice reform, with a particular emphasis on redefining the role of the prosecutor to help end mass incarceration. To further these ends, Foss founded Prosecutor Impact, an advocacy organization that develops training and curriculum for prosecutors to reframe their role in the criminal justice system.

Foss believes prosecution is ripe for reinvention, requiring better incentives and more measurable metrics for success beyond “cases won.” This was the topic of his 2016 TED Talk, which has been viewed over two million times.

During his nine years as a prosecutor, Foss collaborated with the courts and the community to develop programs that continue to have a positive impact on distressed neighborhoods in the Boston area. Before leaving the District Attorney’s Office, Foss helped pioneer the first juvenile diversion program in Suffolk County, keeping young people out of the cradle-to-prison pipeline.

He earned a Bachelor of Science in developmental biology and embryology from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, in 2002 and a Juris Doctor from Suffolk University Law School in 2008.

The public is invited to attend the commencement ceremony. No ticket is required.

Professor Eric Berger

Berger Teaches "Law School for Everyone: Constitutional Law" for The Great Courses Series of On-Demand Digital Courses

26 Apr 2019    

The Great Courses has released Professor Eric Berger’s course, Law School for Everyone: Constitutional Law. The course, which includes 12 video lectures, is available on DVD or by digital download. The accompanying course guidebook is 120 pages and includes photographs, illustrations and suggested course readings.

Students will:

  • Consider how the U.S. Constitution allocates power to federal and state governments
  • Untangle the complex legal battles over hot-button issues, including same-sex marriage and abortion
  • Investigate how the Commerce Clause was used during the New Deal to expand the powers of Congress
  • Learn how different Supreme Court justices approached seminal constitutional cases
  • Understand how to read the U.S. Constitution with an eye to how its language can be interpreted and misinterpreted

Additional information, including a full course description, is available at

The Great Courses is a collection of video and audio lectures produced and distributed by The Teaching Company. The courses are designed to be engaging, immersive learning experiences, with no exams, no homework assignments and no prerequisites. Of the more than 500,000 college professors in the world, only the top 1% are selected to teach one of The Great Courses. The esteemed faculty includes award-winning experts and professors from the most respected institutions in the world, selected by customers exclusively for their ability to teach.

Professor Rich Leiter

Leiter Publishes Updated Book

26 Apr 2019    

Professor Richard Leiter’s updated book National Survey of State Laws (NSSL) is now available. The new edition includes four years of updates for every chapter, and new content for:

  • Interest rates
  • Seat belt laws
  • Restrictive convenants in employment
  • Child support guidelines
  • Domestic violence
  • Bullying
  • Civil shoplifting
  • Food laws
  • Medical records

Now in its eighth edition, National Survey of State Laws is a print and online resource that provides an overall view of some of the most-asked about and controversial legal topics in the United States. This database is derived from Leiter’s National Survey of State Laws print editions. Presented in chart format, NSSL allows users to make basic state-by-state comparisons of current state laws. The database is updated regularly as new laws are passed or updated.

Dylan Bakken and Shannon Seim

Bakken, ’19, and Seim, ’19, Receive Student Award for Outstanding Impact through Pro Bono Service

16 Apr 2019    

Dylan Bakken, ’19, and Shannon Seim, ’19, are the 2019 co-recipients of the Student Award for Outstanding Impact through Pro Bono Service. 

Each year, as part of the Pro Bono Initiative, a student is recognized for their commitment to pro bono service while at the College of Law. The impact may be measured by reviewing a single act or project, or multiple acts or projects performed by the student during his or her enrollment at the College of Law. The selection committee takes into consideration not only the total number of pro bono hours performed, but also the overall impact the pro bono work has had on the community and underserved populations.

Dylan Bakken’s outstanding efforts in pro bono include significant work on two important projects, Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) and the South Dakota Teen Court (SDTC). Dylan devoted his weekends, free time during the week, and most of his spring break to help the underprivileged and students prepare their tax returns through the VITA program. After realizing a large portion of the students were non-resident immigrants, he took the initiative to become certified in preparing international tax forms to ensure this population was equally served. The South Dakota Teen Court is a criminal deferral program that involves a mock court proceeding and community service. If the teen completes the program, their charges are dismissed and they are given an opportunity for a fresh start. Dylan’s work with the SDTC involved serving as a judge to administer the proceedings and as a consultant to help the teen prosecutor or defense counsel prepare for the proceeding. Through his work in these two programs, Dylan reported a combined 200+ pro bono hours during his time at the College of Law.

During her time at the College of Law, Shannon Seim served as a volunteer and Chair of the CLEP program—organizing events, covering multiple shifts, and always being willing to fill in when gaps arose. Shannon also designed and initiated the THRIVE Project and recruited twenty-eight other student volunteers and four faculty to facilitate presentations on landlord-tenant law for refugee and immigrant students in Omaha high schools. Shannon also served as a member and later co-chair of the Equal Justice Society and organized numerous events to raise money for non-profit organizations and the Nebraska Public Interest Law Fund (NPILF). In addition, Shannon spent her summers working for Legal Aid of Nebraska, serving Nebraska’s poor. As one of her nominators shared, “Shannon’s passion for pro bono work is contagious and the pro bono work she has done in her 3 years at the College of Law has impacted many individuals.”


College of Law to Host NASA Research Conference

04 Apr 2019    

In September 2018, the University of Nebraska received a $250,000 NASA Space Law grant to create a nationwide network of students, faculty and practitioners interested in space law and policy. As part of that grant, this weekend April 6-7, Nebraska Law will host a student and new scholar space law workshop, focused on research, writing, and publication.

“The key objective of the Space Law Network is to implement a system to support, educate and provide opportunities to law students across the country interested in space law and policy.” said Elsbeth Magilton, executive director of the Space, Cyber and Telecommunications Law program in the University of Nebraska College of Law. “We hope that every attendee walks away from the weekend with an idea and a research plan their work. Ultimately we hope to see a notable increase in new scholarship in space law in the coming years after the workshop.”

The workshop will feature a mix of sessions detailing the international and domestic foundations of space law, including multiple practice focus areas, while highlighting holes in current policy or scholarship ripe for discussion. The workshop will also include working sessions, dedicated to developing topics and outlines, and sessions on legal research and “how-to” publish in a variety of forums.

Professor John Lenich

2019 Edition of Lenich's Book Published

01 Apr 2019    

Thomson Reuters (West) published the 2019 edition of Professor John Lenich’s book, Nebraska Civil Procedure.  The book has nearly 1500 pages of text and provides an in-depth analysis of the procedural rules that govern the litigation of a civil action in Nebraska.  The 2019 edition includes six new chapters on the right to jury trial, trial procedure, new trial motions, default judgments, voluntary dismissals, and vacating judgments.  The existing chapters have also been updated to reflect statutory amendments and cases decided in 2018.  The exiting chapters discuss jurisdiction, venue, statutes of limitation, proper parties, joinder, interpleader, intervention, pleading, service, motions to dismiss, interlocutory injunctions, discovery, and an assortment of other topics.

Megan McDowell

McDowell, '15, Joins Cordell and Cordell

22 Mar 2019    

Cordell & Cordell, the nation’s largest domestic litigation firm focusing on representing men in family law cases, recently hired Litigation Attorney Megan E. McDowell, '15,  in its Lincoln office (233 S. 13th St., Suite 1100, Lincoln, NE 68501).

Ms. McDowell earned her Juris Doctor with distinction from the University of Nebraska College of Law.

Prior to joining Cordell & Cordell, Ms. McDowell practiced family law. She is a member of the Nebraska State Bar Association.
Kimberly Barton

Barton Wins Ed Mendrzycki Essay Contest

20 Mar 2019    

Kimberly Barton, ’20, is the winner of the 2019 American Bar Association (ABA) Ed Mendrzycki Essay Contest.

 The contest encourages original and innovative research and writing in the area of legal malpractice law, professional liability insurance and loss prevention. The 2019 essay hypothetical involved issues of diminished mental capacity and permitted disclosures.

Barton, a native of Bakersfield, Calif., is in her second year at Nebraska College of Law. She is a member of the Allies & Advocates for LGBTQ Equality, Equal Justice Society, Multi-Cultural Legal Society, Student Bar Association and Women’s Law Caucus. In 2018, Barton was named a Summer Fellow in the Rural Summer Legal Corps.

As the winner of the Ed Mendrzycki Essay Contest, Barton will receive a cash prize and a trip to the Spring 2019 National Legal Malpractice Conference in Miami Beach, Fla. in April. 

The Ed Mendrzycki Essay Contest is conducted by the ABA Standing Committee on Lawyers’ Professional Liability and the San Francisco law firm of Long & Levit LLP. The 2019 contest was administered and judged by a subcommittee designated by the ABA Standing Committee on Lawyers’ Professional Liability. The contest was open to Young Lawyers Division or Law Student Division members of the ABA.

Hilary Sayre

Sayre Selected for Summer Army JAG Internship Program

20 Mar 2019    

Hilary Sayre, ’20, has been selected for the Army Judge Advocate General’s (JAG) Corps Summer Internship Program. Sayre will work at Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio, Texas.

The Army JAG Corps hires approximately 70 second-year law students each summer to work in JAG Corps offices worldwide. JAG Corps interns serve as temporary civil service employees in a variety of legal areas, including criminal law, administrative law, national security law and legal assistance. Army Judge Advocates provide guidance and mentorship to JAG interns throughout the 60-day internship experience.

Sayre, a Texas native, is in her second year at Nebraska College of Law. She is currently completing an externship with the Air Force JAG Office at Offutt Air Force Base in Omaha.

Sayre is the sixth Nebraska Law student to participate in the Army JAG Summer Internship Program since 2006.

Richard Leiter

Leiter Receives the Roy M. Mersky Spirit of Law Library Librarianship Award

20 Mar 2019    

Richard Leiter, director of the Schmid Law Library and professor of law, was named the 2019 recipient of the Roy M. Mersky Spirit of Law Librarianship Award.

The Roy M. Mersky Spirit of Law Librarianship Award was established in 1992 and named posthumously in honor of its co-creator and co-founder, Roy Mersky. The award was created in order to give special recognition to individual law librarians engaged in significant acts of charitable work, community involvement or social service.

Leiter is the other co-creator and co-founder of the award. By honoring him as this year’s recipient, the selection committee recognizes Leiter’s behind the scenes efforts and undying support, which has insured that the award continues to prosper and maintains a level of respect enjoyed by few others. Because of this effort and dedication, award winners have received recognition and visibility in the field for work that may otherwise have gone unnoticed.

“We are thrilled that Rich is being honored by his peers,” said Richard Moberly, dean of the University of Nebraska College of Law. “He takes great pride in the profession and invests significant amounts of time towards projects benefitting the profession. This is a perfect example of this dedication.”

Leiter will receive the award at the 2019 AALL Annual Meeting held later this year in Washington, D.C.

College of Law

UCLA Law Professor to Deliver Pound Lecture

19 Mar 2019    

Stephen Bainbridge, William D. Warren Distinguished Professor of Law at the University of California Los Angeles will deliver the College of Law’s Pound Lecture at noon on March 27.

Professor Bainbridge’s lecture, Corporate Purpose in a Populist Era, focuses on the 2016 U.S. Presidential election and similar developments in parts of Europe. Commentators have widely acknowledged the rise of populist movements on both sides of the political spectrum indicating deep suspicion of big business. These developments could have important implications for the law and practice of corporate purpose.

Professor Bainbridge is a prolific scholar, whose work covers a variety of subjects, but with a strong emphasis on the law and economics of public corporations. He has written over 100 law review articles and 19 books. Professor Bainbridge has been a Salvatori Fellow with the Heritage Foundation, a member of the American Bar Association’s Committee on Corporate Laws, a member of the Editorial Advisory Board of the Journal of Markets and Morality, and Chair of the Executive Committee of the Federalist Society’s Corporations, Securities & Antitrust Practice Group.

Bainbridge’s presentation will be held in the Hamann Auditorium at the College of Law and is free and open to the public.

Professor John Lenich

Lenich Retirement Reception is April 2

18 Mar 2019    

A retirement reception for John P. Lenich, Earl Dunlap Distinguished Professor of Law, is 3:00 p.m. April 2 in the College of Law student lounge. The reception is open to the public.

Lenich joined the College of Law faculty in 1984 as an assistant professor of law. Since that time, his teaching and service have been recognized extensively. Lenich has been recognized as the First-Year Professor of the Year four times, has received the College Award for Distinguished Teaching twice, the Nebraska State Bar Foundation Award for Outstanding Legal Educator, the Nebraska State Bar Association Service Award of Special Merit and the College of Law Dean’s Advisory Board Distinguished Faculty Award.

From 1988-1990, Lenich served at the College’s Associate Dean. Lenich recently also served as special assistant to the interim vice chancellor for student affairs. He currently serves as a member of the Uniform Law Commission and the Nebraska Supreme Court Committee on Practice and Procedure.

Richard Moberly, Harvey Perlman, and Hon. Riko Bishop will deliver remarks. All faculty, staff, students, and alumni are welcome to attend and celebrate Lenich’s retirement.

Luciano Ramirez Guerra

Ramirez Guerra Awarded Peggy Browning Fellowship

14 Mar 2019    

The Peggy Browning Fund has awarded a 10-week summer fellowship to Luciano Ramirez Guerra, a first-year student at University of Nebraska College of Law. Luciano will spend the fellowship working at CASA in Hyattsville, MD. The application process is highly competitive, and the award is a tribute to his outstanding qualifications.

In 2019, the Peggy Browning Fund will support over 80 public interest labor law fellowships nationwide. Securing a Peggy Browning Fellowship is not an easy task, with nearly 450 applicants competing for the honor this year. Peggy Browning Fellows are distinguished students who have not only excelled in law school but who have also demonstrated their commitment to workers’ rights through their previous educational, work, volunteer and personal experiences. Luciano Ramirez Guerra certainly fits this description.

Luciano credits his experiences growing up in central Nebraska for his passion for social and economic justice. The son of immigrant meat packers, he developed a firm interest in workers’ rights after listening to his parents and their co-workers discuss their unfair working conditions. As an undergraduate, Luciano became founder and President of his university’s chapter of the Young Democratic Socialists of America. He decided to attend law school to become an effective advocate for workers, labor unions, and the poor. Outside the classroom, Luciano works with the Democratic Socialists of America, his local tenant solidarity organization, and with Feed the People, an organization devoted towards providing free groceries to people in need.

Luciano is the second Nebraska Law student to be awarded a Peggy Browning fellowship. In 2017, Christian Gobel, '18, spent the fellowship working for Service Employees Union International.

The Peggy Browning Fund is a not for-profit organization established in memory of Margaret A. Browning, a prominent union-side attorney who was a member of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) from 1994 until 1997. Peggy Browning Fellowships provide law students with unique, diverse and challenging work experiences fighting for social and economic justice. These experiences encourage and inspire students to pursue careers in public interest labor law. 

To learn more about the Peggy Browning Fund, contact Julia Watkins, Program Coordinator, by phone at 267-273-7996 or by email at, or visit

Iraola with client

Iraola, '19, Represents Minor Client in Adams County Court

13 Mar 2019    

Nicole Iraola, '19, a third-year law student currently enrolled in the Immigration Clinic at the College of Law, conducted a guardianship hearing in the Adams County Court in Hastings on March 13.  The court appointed a guardian for Ms. Iraola's minor client, whose parents are both deceased, and made special findings that will allow the client to pursue Special Immigrant Juvenile Status (SIJS) with United States Citizenship and Immigration Services.  Such status will ultimately result in the client obtaining permanent residency (i.e., getting her "green card").  Ms. Iraola is one of 10 third-year law students enrolled in the Immigration Clinic this year.  The faculty supervisor in the Clinic is Professor Kevin Ruser.

Jenny Zhang

Zhang, '15, Joins Reinhart Boerner Van Deuren S.C.

07 Mar 2019    

Jenny Zhang, '15, and two Milwaukee-based attorneys have have joined Reinhart Boerner Van Deuren s.c. (Reinhart), expanding the firm’s Litigation, Tax and Employee Benefits practices.

Jenny Zhang (Minneapolis) is an attorney in Reinhart’s Employee Benefits Practice and Taft-Hartley Group. Zhang advises multiemployer funds and plan administrators on a wide variety of matters. During law school, she served as executive editor of the Nebraska Law Review and as a senior member on the Nebraska Moot Court Board. Zhang earned her J.D., High Distinction, from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln College of Law.


Reinhart is a full-service, business-oriented law firm with offices in MilwaukeeMadison and Waukesha, Wisconsin; Chicago and Rockford, Illinois; Denver, Colorado; and Phoenix, Arizona. With more than 200 lawyers, the firm serves clients throughout the United States and internationally with a combination of legal advice, industry understanding and superior client service.