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October 31, 2014

October 27, 2014

October 15, 2014

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Rebecca Silbert

New Warren Institute Leader

Rebecca Silbert has been named executive director of the Warren Institute on Law and Social Policy, which she joined in 2011. Formerly an assistant federal public defender and an associate at Keker & Van Nest, Silbert steers the national Partner for Each and Every Child initiative—which builds on Warren Institute projects linking research and practice in several policy areas. She also oversees an ongoing study examining the sources and costs of error within California’s criminal justice system.

O’Connell to Help Improve Agency Procedures >>

Professor Anne Joseph O’Connell, Berkeley Law’s associate dean for faculty development and research, has been appointed to the Administrative Conference of the United States (ACUS). An independent federal agency, ACUS provides nonpartisan expert recommendations for improving government procedures. Those procedures, which include fair and effective dispute resolution and rule-making efficiency, aim to leverage interactive technologies and encourage open communication with the public. ACUS’ membership is composed of innovative federal officials and experts with diverse views and backgrounds from academia and the private sector. (10/29/14)

Jorde Symposium Tackles Forgiveness in Law >>

“Should Law Promote Forgiveness?” was the question posed at this year’s Thomas M. Jorde Symposium. Delivering the Oct. 20 keynote address, Harvard Law Professor Martha Minow examined what place forgiveness has—and should have—in a formal legal system. Berkeley Law Professors Kathryn Abrams and Christopher Kutz served as commentators at the event, co-hosted by the law school and the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University School of Law. The symposium was created in 1996, with the support of Professor Emeritus Thomas Jorde, to generate scholarly discourse on vital legal issues facing contemporary society. (10/24/14)

Hiatt ’09 Wins Pro Bono Service Award >>

Keith Hiatt ’09 has won the President’s Pro Bono Service Award from the State Bar of California. Created in 1983, the award honors those who excel in providing free legal services to low-income clients. A solo practitioner and Ph.D. student in Berkeley Law’s Jurisprudence and Social Policy Program, Hiatt has volunteered hundreds of hours with Community Legal Services in East Palo Alto and the Legal Aid Society of San Mateo County. His work has included advocating for safe and healthy housing conditions, defending unlawful evictions, protecting tenants against unlawful landlord behavior, and recovering security deposits. (9/19/14)

Video: Christina Swarns of the NAACP

Christina Swarns is the director of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund's Criminal Justice Project. She spoke on "Post-Racial America: The View from Death Row" at a recent Henderson Center Rutch Chance Lecture. Watch here »

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Teaching and Research at Berkeley Law

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When Ferguson erupted over the police killing of an unarmed black teenager, Sr. Fellow Richard Rothstein investigated how the town became a segregated black suburb. In The Making of Ferguson, he blames old 20th century government housing and zoning policies, among others, as the root of the town’s troubles.

In Intellectual Property, Innovation, and the Environment, editors Peter Menell and Sarah Tran provide insight into the evolving debate over IP law and the environment. The material is considered essential reading for lawyers, economists, and policy-makers working in the fields of energy and climate change.

In his lecture, Our Broken Death Penalty, Judge William Fletcher argues that the practice can’t be repaired and predicts the U.S. will abolish it in time. He says it’s applied erratically, arbitrarily, and unfairly at every rung of the process, from the police investigation to the courts and state execution.