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Clinical Education Faculty Spotlight

Professor Stephanie Blondell Convenes a Clinical Law New Normal Think Tank

Starting in March, Stephanie Blondell convened a conversation amongst Clinical Law professors that continued weekly throughout the semester and has continued this fall every other week to discuss the changing nature of clinical pedagogy in the COVID era. It has been dubbed the Clinical Law New Normal Think Tank. In addition Professor Blondell was appointed as co-chair of the AALS Clinical Section ADR Subcommittee.

Professor Tanya Cooper Discusses the Impact of COVID-19 and Stay-at-home Orders on Intimate Partner Violence at Reimagining Justice Event

Professor Tanya Cooper participated in a panel including The expert practitioners on the panel including Kevin Mitchell, Managing Attorney of Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles, Arati Vasan, Senior Managing Attorney of the Family Violence Appellate Project to examine how to stay-at-home orders have impacted intimate partner violence.

Professor Tanya Cooper Presents "We Shall Overcome: Stories of Racial Bias in American Foster Care" -- Clinical Writer's Workshop at NYU Law Conference

Professor Tanya Asim Cooper presented "We Shall Overcome: Stories of Racial Bias in American Foster Care" at New York University Law School's Clinical Law Review Writers' Workshop. The virtual conference was held on October 3.

About "We Shall Overcome: Stories of Racial Bias in American Foster Care"

A critical race analysis exposes child welfare's realities, the vestiges of a history of slavery, and a consciousness about the roles played and power held by various institutional players. Law school clinics play a vital role in educating future lawyers and the community and shifting power dynamics in child welfare, as our clinic demonstrated. When all the players work together, with families at the center, true child welfare can be achieved.

Professor Jeffrey Baker Quoted in "California Can't Recover From Its Devastating Fires Unless It Overhauls Its Zoning Laws" -- Quartz

Professor Jeffrey R. Baker is quoted in the Quartz article, "California Can't Recover From Its Devastating Fires Unless It Overhauls Its Zoning Laws." The article considers disaster resilience, recovery, and housing policy in California.

Excerpt from "California Can't Recover From Its Devastating Fires Unless It Overhauls Its Zoning Laws":

In November 2018, the Woolsey Fire ripped through the affluent beachside town of Malibu, California. It was the most destructive wildfire in the history of Los Angeles County and destroyed 473 homes in Malibu.

Nearly two years later, only a few of those have been fully rebuilt. The main reason for the holdup: The city's notoriously byzantine, restrictive zoning laws.

"Malibu's entire history is built around a desperate desire to keep development from happening here," said Jeff Baker, director of the Community Justice Clinic at Pepperdine University's School of Law, in Malibu. "It's incredibly difficult to rebuild. And that makes the effects of natural disasters worse."

Professor Jeffrey Baker Presents "Lawyering During Crisis" -- AALS Section on Clinical Education: Externships Webinar

Professor Jeffrey R. Baker presented "Lawyering During Crisis" for an AALS Section on Clinical Education: Externships webinar. The online webinar was for externship professors on teaching and training law students how to respond professionally and personally in times of crisis and disaster. Professor Baker was on a panel with Professors Christine Cerniglia of Stetson University College of Law, Davida Finger of Loyola University New Orleans College of Law, and Nadiyah Humber of Roger Williams University School of Law.

From the AALS Section on Clinical Education: Externships program:

During times of crisis, lawyers play an important role to model leadership and resilience. Lawyers serve a critical role in rebuilding society and giving voice to equity issues.

You will hear from clinicians who have lawyered during crisis and their personal stories as well as practical tips to think about during this pandemic. We will take time to reflect upon some of the lessons learned to include trusting lawyering processes and being intentional and strategic with triage and priorities to ensure responsive, effective services to clients during the crisis. And, how to meet clients by being a human and supporter first and a lawyer second.

We will also take a moment to reflect upon the current times we are living in and how to engage our students to think of themselves as leaders during a time of crisis.

Professor Tanya Cooper Presents "The Power of a Diverse Professional Workforce" -- National Association of Counsel for Children Conference

Professor Tanya Asim Cooper participated in the presentation, "The Power of a Diverse Professional Workforce," at the 43rd Annual Child Welfare Law Conference. The conference was presented virtually by the National Association of Council for Children (NACC) on August 23-28. The NACC provides continuing legal education programs to strengthen and support child welfare legal practitioners nationwide.

From the NACC conference program "The Power of a Diverse Professional Workforce"

In 2020, is the issue of diversity still relevant to the child welfare workforce? What is the value in focusing on diversity in the profession and how do we achieve meaningful diversity in the profession? What role does bias play in active and passive diversity efforts? These questions and more will be discussed in depth, with strategies to help participants develop plans to achieve diversity in their practice. Participants will discuss challenges faced in their practice in attracting a diverse professional workforce and learn strategies to become more intentional in recruitment efforts to establish and maintain diversity. Presenters will focus on the importance of pipeline support from law school to profession, the impact of clinical programming on availability of talent pools for recruitment of child welfare professionals, and strategies to emphasize diversity as a strength in the provision of services for children and families.

Professor Jeffrey Baker Discusses "Anti-racism, Activism, and Law" -- Blher Podcast

Professor Jeffrey R. Baker participated in the Blher podcast episode, "Anti-racism, Activism, and Law,: A Conversation with Professor Jeff Baker," with Pepperdine Caruso School of Law alumna Brittany Hughes (JD '17) and Kelly Phipps. The participants discussed the importance of rule of law and how it intersects with anti-racism and activism. They also discussed the continuing civil rights movement and Brittany's professional leadership on these issues. Brittany is the current Deputy Legislative Director and Counsel at the U.S. House of Representatives GA-05, formerly the Office of Congressman John Lewis. She handles a legislative portfolio that includes criminal justice, international and domestic tax, financial services, national security and defense, and business issues.