Faculty in the News

Faculty News

  • Star Tribune Quotes Prof. McGeveran About Genetic Privacy and Police Recruitment 

    August 15, 2018

    Prof. William McGeveran, an expert in privacy law, was quoted in a Star Tribune article reporting a litigation settlement between the Minneapolis Police Department and the federal government about the MPD’s use of family medical history information in hiring new officers. The federal case claimed that questions about police recruits’ family history violated the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA). Prof. McGeveran explained that “people think genetics is only about DNA under a microscope, but this statute sweeps more broadly.”

  • Prof. Kitrosser Participates in CNN Q&A On White House Non-Disclosure Agreements and the First Amendment

    August 15, 2018

    Professor Kitrosser participated in a written Q&A with CNN’s Chris Cillizza about the First Amendment implications of reported non-disclosure agreements (NDAs) between President Trump and members of his staff, including former staffer Omarosa Manigault Newman. Among other things, Kitrosser discussed the breadth of the NDA’s alleged text and the importance of applying First Amendment analysis to it despite Donald Trump’s characterizing it as an agreement between private parties. Under the NDA, Kitrosser explained, “signers must promise never, during or after their service, to say anything disparaging about Trump, Pence, any Trump family member, etc. There’s no way that a government entity or official could require such terms consistent with the First Amendment. It’s a viewpoint-based prior restraint on speech of central public concern. Were an official able to get around these important protections by simply having their campaign enter the agreement (thus framing it as an agreement between private parties), such protections would have little meaning.”

  • Prof. McGeveran Critiques Local Politician’s Trademark Filing

    August 14, 2018

    Professor William McGeveran, an expert in trademark law, was quoted in a Star Tribune article explaining some trademark law fundamentals. The story concerned efforts by a local policitian to register a trademark for “WedgeLive,” which is already the name of a local blog that had criticized her. “That’s not how this works,” McGeveran said. “That’s not how any of this works.” He said the blogger retained the trademark rights by using the name long before the politician filed a registration application. McGeveran told the newspaper, “First day of trademark class, I tell students: What creates trademark rights is using the name. Not registration. Registration’s a piece of paper.”

  • Prof. Klass Quoted in Energywire Article on Lawsuits over East Coast Natural Gas Pipelines

    August 13, 2018

    Professor Alexandra Klass was quoted in an article in Energywire reporting on recent victories in federal appellate courts by environmental groups and landowners challenging a range of federal environmental permits issued for controversial East Coast Natural gas pipelines.

  • Prof. Shen Named to National Institutes of Health Neuroethics Subgroup

    August 13, 2018

    At the request of Dr. Francis Collins, Director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), Associate Professor Francis Shen has joined the Neuroethics Subgroup of the Advisory Committee to the Director for the BRAIN Initiative Working Group 2.0. The Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies® (BRAIN) Initiative is aimed at revolutionizing our understanding of the human brain. Professor Shen, who teaches a Law and Neuroscience course at the Law School, will provide expert advice on the legal and ethical implications of advances in brain science. At the Law School, Professor Shen directs a Neurolaw Lab and leads a University Grand Challenges grant on improving brain health in Minnesota youth sports.

  • Prof. Carbone Quoted in New York Times Article on Culture and Political Divide Over Age Women Have Children

    August 4, 2018

    Professor June Carbone was quoted by the New York Times on Aug. 4, 2018 in an article on how the age at which women have children constitutes a cultural and political divide. The article addresses issues that Professor Carbone covered at length in her 2010 book, Red Families v. Blue Families, with Naomi Cahn, which examined how differences in family formation practices correspond to growing political polarization in the United States and to legal differences at the state level in the legal regulation of the family.

  • Prof. Murray in Bloomberg News Article About President Trump’s Use of His Clemency Process

    July 31, 2018

    Professor Murray, whose Clemency Project at the Law School submitted 35 clemency petitions under the clemency process instituted by President Obama, was quoted in an in-depth piece at Bloomberg News about President Trump’s use of his clemency process. The Law School’s project has eight clemency applications pending before President Trump. “There are different paradigms for presidential clemency. [Some presidents] focused it on particular categories of people [and] some used it to close a political chapter and create a clean slate going forward,” said Murray, giving the example of Gerald Ford’s pardon of Richard Nixon following his resignation over Watergate. “But most have used it in an ad hoc way,” Murray maintained, concluding that it’s “too soon to make sweeping statements about President Trump’s strategy (if any) in using his pardon power.”

  • Prof. Befort Cited by California Supreme Court

    July 24, 2018

    In Dynamex Operations v. Superior Court, 416 P.3d 1 (2018), the California Supreme Court adopted a new test for determining employee status that will extend regulatory protection to a greater number of workers. In its opinion, the court cited Professor Befort’s scholarship to support the proposition that the prior legal standard for determining employee/independent contractor status “invites employers to structure their relationships in whatever manner best evades liability.”

  • Prof. Murray Interviewed on MPR Regarding Lawsuit Filed by Family of Police Shooting Victim, Justine Damond-Ruszcyk

    July 24, 2018

    Professor Murray was interviewed by MPR’s Matt Sepic regarding the civil lawsuit filed on July 23, 2018, by the family of Justine Damond-Ruszcyk, shot by Hennepin County police officer, Mohamed Noor, on July 17, 2018. Murray pointed out that the lawsuit could work to Noor’s benefit in two ways. First, the jury could view the civil lawsuit as an alternative mechanism to give redress to the victim’s family, allowing them to treat Noor more leniently in any verdict they deliver. Second, the lawsuit’s focus on police procedures, culture, and training could convince jurors that Noor is not as culpable as prosecutors allege. He has been charged with 3rd degree murder, which requires that the defendant acted with “depraved indifference,” a mental state equivalent to random shooting at a passing train.

  • Prof. Klass Quoted in Outside Magazine on Sen. Mike Lee’s Bill to Stop National Monument Designations in Utah

    July 22, 2018

    Professor Alexandra B. Klass was quoted in an Outside Magazine article about Sen. Mike Lee’s bill to prevent new national monument designations in Utah.

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