Schnader a Proud Sponsor of the 2008 Just The Beginning Foundation Biennial ConferenceOn September 29, 2008 by Schnader in Appellate
September 29, 2008 – Washington, D.C.: Schnader Harrison Segal & Lewis LLP was proud sponsor of the 2008 Biennial Conference of the Just the Beginning Foundation, titled “Reaching Back, Lifting Up.” The Honorable Timothy K. Lewis, a former federal appeals judge and current co-chair of Schnader’s Appellate Practice Group, was a co-chair for the event, along with William T. Coleman, Jr. of O’Melveny & Myers LLP, and Cherie R. Kiser, managing partner of Cahill Gordon and Reindel, LLP.
The three-day conference was designed to bring together a diverse group of federal and state judges, lawyers, law professors, law students, college students, and high school and middle school students to enjoy the living stories of judges of diverse backgrounds and participate in public panel discussions for the community focused on contemporary legal issues. The event was held September 25-28, 2008 at the J.W. Marriot Hotel in Washington, D.C. and at several other venues throughout the city.
The Just the Beginning Foundation (JTBF) was founded as a multiracial not-for-profit organization of judges, lawyers, and citizens to preserve the rich stories of judges and lawyers of color. As JTBF evolved, the lessons learned from these trailblazers inspired the organization to focus its efforts on developing programs that would open the pipeline of opportunity for young persons from diverse backgrounds. JTBF supports students of color and other underrepresented groups by providing free educational and mentoring programs. JTBF offers a series of pipeline programs to prepare students for careers in law, which include Middle School and High School Summer Legal Institutes, an Advanced Summer Legal Institute, law student externships, law student scholarships, programming in schools that target underserved and minority high school and college students, and biennial conferences that bring together diverse legal leaders of local communities. The organization’s long-term goal is to increase diversity in the legal profession and on the bench.
On the opening day of this year’s Biennial Conference, JTBF hosted “Robes in the Law Schools” in Washington, DC, Maryland, and Northern Virginia. Multiracial teams of federal and state judges visited local law schools to meet with law school, college, and high school students, sharing their paths to the bench, strategies and tips for success in the profession, and insight into career-building opportunities as externs and law clerks in the court system.
Opening day events concluded with the “Trailblazers Panel” and a reception at Howard University Law School. This very special session featured several judges, including Judge Damon. J. Keith, United States Circuit Judge for the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit; Judge Consuelo B. Marshall, United States District Court for the Central District of California; and, Judge Matthew J. Perry, United States District Judge for the District of South Carolina. Other scheduled events included a “Pathfinder Judges Panel” hosted by The American University Washington College of Law, a dialogue with United States District Judges Reggie B. Walton, (D.C., D.C.) and Judge Marcia Cooke, (D.C., S. Fla.), and a series of other panel discussions focused on topics such as strategies for achieving excellence; attracting and inspiring younger generations of students and lawyers; and, the impact of the media on the justice system. Additionally, separate sessions for law school, college, and high school students took place, including an interactive workshop for high school students. A full schedule of the events held is available at the JTBF website (www.jtbf.org).
The Honorable Timothy K. Lewis is co-chair of Schnader’s Appellate Practice Group. He also serves as a mediator, arbitrator, settlement counselor, and trial and appellate practitioner. Before entering private practice, Judge Lewis served on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. He was serving on the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania when President George H. W. Bush elevated him to the Court of Appeals in 1992. At the time of both appointments he was the youngest federal judge in the United States. Before being appointed to the federal bench, Judge Lewis served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Pennsylvania and as an Assistant District Attorney in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania.
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