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As Seen by the Dean

photo of Dean Young

Our Alumni Family

Every year I am more and more amazed by the pure joy associated with Commencement weekend. This year was no exception—we were all brimming with excitement and pride over the accomplishments of our students. Faculty members, fellow students, and almost 5,000 family and friends commemorated this momentous event and acknowledged the successful culmination of our graduates’ legal education at GW Law School. We are pleased about their achievements and look forward to their outstanding professional careers—something we have come to expect from our graduates.

The Class of 2007 has now joined your ranks as members of our great GW Law alumni. I hope you will enjoy getting to know this smart, involved, and focused group of graduates just as we have.

I am delighted that we have continued our tradition of honoring one of our own alumni as our graduation speaker. This year, Hon. Charles T. Manatt, LLB ’62, a dedicated and supportive member of the GW Law School family, delivered the keynote address to the graduates. With a distinguished national and international career in the fields of law, politics, business, and public service, Chuck is a prime example of the many successes and accomplishments of our graduates.

A hallmark of his career has been his devotion to GW Law. He—like the rest of us here—was impressed with the willingness of the members of this graduating class to “give back” even as they are just starting out. He celebrated this group’s willingness to get and to stay involved with the community and the school, both through financial support and pro bono work. He complimented them on their dedication and urged them to continue a lifelong practice of these efforts.

I commend the outstanding GW Law School faculty for the fine legal education they provide to our graduates year after year. My colleagues’ work is highly relevant across a broad spectrum of current major legal issues. They are highly accomplished scholars as well as nationally and internationally recognized leaders in their fields.

In this issue, it gives me great pleasure to join in recognizing Professors Mary Cheh and Jeff Rosen for their dedication to the Law School and for their commitment to addressing the issues and concerns that affect our nation’s capital. GW Law faculty members are making a difference within the legal community from animal rights to human rights, and from environmental awareness to criminal law enforcement. I look forward to telling you more about our faculty by profiling our new and visiting faculty members in the fall edition of this magazine.

Involvement—in your school, your community, your society—is the hallmark of the GW Law family. You are valued alumni and your involvement is critical to our ongoing success. Many of you, like Chuck Manatt, are deeply involved on a daily basis and active supporters of the goals and mission of the Law School. I appreciate your dedication and commitment. Many of you are very connected to the legal community and to your alma mater. To you I send my sincere thanks and appreciation, and my encouragement to continue your good work on our behalf. To those who have yet to become involved, I ask you to contribute to your Law School by giving your time and resources in support of our efforts.

There are many opportunities for GW Law alumni to participate in the broader legal community. Your Law School is in continual need of volunteers as event sponsors, mentors, and career advisers. You can help by providing our students and alumni with employment opportunities. In order to continue to attract the outstanding quality of students we have been privileged to bring to GW Law, we will continue to need funds for scholarships and for loan forgiveness for those engaged in public interest work.

As you enjoy your summer, I ask that you dedicate yourself to becoming “part of the solution.” We would love to see you here at the Law School. I suggest that you start by joining us for Alumni Reunion Weekend this fall. Come back and see the school, talk with your professors, and meet our current students. Even if you are not from one of the class years that will be celebrating a time mark, there is much to do and see and in which to become involved. Many of your fellow alums are meaningfully involved with the Law School, and we eagerly await you as an additional asset of this fine school.

Lastly, I want to tell you how proud I am of our alumni office and the many events it has organized this year. Baseball at RFK Stadium with the Nationals and with the Braves at Turner Field; a play at the Kennedy Center; faculty discussions, such as the recent one with Professor Don Braman; a Supreme Court swearing-in ceremony and reception; a golf outing; a wine tasting; dinner in Berlin with Professor David Fontana—all are designed to give you an opportunity to meet and greet, network, have fun, and learn a little. Your participation at these events will help to make them even more successful—that is a vital part of your involvement. I look forward to seeing you in the near future.

Frederick M. Lawrence
Dean and Robert Kramer Research Professor of Law