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American Constitution Society Named Student Chapter of the Week


Left to right: Wei Quan ('13), Katherine Pasker ('12), Amy Schutt ('13), Saraswati Singh ('12), Nikita Soukonnikov ('13), Brad Emmons ('12), Staci Lieffring ('13), and Gordon Cohoes ('13)

The University of Minnesota Law School American Constitution Society for Law and Policy (ACS) was named Student Chapter of the Week on Jan. 21 by the national organization.

The Law School’s ACS kicked off the fall semester by arranging a happy hour with all of the ACS chapters in the Twin Cities, including two other law school chapters and the local lawyer chapter. The chapter's most notable fall event was a lecture cosponsored by the Law School's Armed Forces Association on "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," featuring Ashwin Madia, a prominent Twin Cities attorney who successfully defended a fellow Marine prosecuted under that policy. In early December, the chapter also organized a viewing party for the live webcast of the Ninth Circuit hearing in Perry v. Schwarzenegger, the case attacking California's anti-marriage equality amendment. The chapter recently cosponsored a discussion on civility in law and politics featuring former Vice President Walter Mondale ('56) and is now looking forward to hosting a lecture on domestic and international legal norms by the Honorable John Tunheim ('80), District Court Judge for the District of Minnesota, as well as a Q&A with B. Todd Jones ('83), U.S. Attorney for the District of Minnesota.

Later this semester, the chapter will host a panel discussion on the effects of the Supreme Court's recent decision in Padilla v. Kentucky on local criminal and immigration attorneys; a lecture by Stephen Wermiel, co-author of Justice Brennan: Liberal Champion; and a panel discussion co-sponsored by the Federal Bar Association on Iqbal/Twombly pleading standards featuring Suzette Malveaux, Professor of Law, Catholic University, and several Twin Cities practitioners.

The ACS is one of the nation's leading progressive legal organizations. Founded in 2001, ACS is a rapidly growing network of lawyers, law students, scholars, judges, policy makers and other concerned individuals. Its mission is to promote the vitality of the U.S. Constitution and the fundamental values it expresses: individual rights and liberties, genuine equality, access to justice, democracy and the rule of law. For more information about the organization, which has established student chapters at more than 180 law schools around the country and lawyer chapters in over 30 cities, please visit www.acslaw.org.