Invitation to Alumni to Join Our Important Work on Racial Justice
Dear Valued Pepperdine Caruso Law Alumni:
As social justice and questions on race and equality continue to evolve, we want to update you on recent actions taken at Pepperdine Caruso Law and invite you to become involved in these actions as we move forward as a law school and as a community.
As Dean Caron has shared, the school has taken many steps to reflect the core values that lie at the heart of our institution. We believe that because each member of Pepperdine Caruso Law community is created equal and made in the image of God, it is our imperative to "do justice" through not only our words, but our actions.
We have focused on pipelines for historically underrepresented groups through California LAW's Pathways Program and our partnerships with Historically Black Colleges and Universities. We have been developing law school curriculum and related educational programming. The appointment of Chalak Richards (JD '12) as our first assistant dean of Student Life, Diversity and Belonging has placed an even sharper focus on our goal that all of our students, faculty, and staff are well equipped to fairly and equally advocate for justice at this moment in history.
As alumni, you can support our efforts in the area of your choice. Donations of your time, attention, prayers, and advice are invaluable to our current and future students. You can volunteer your time in the following ways:
- Listen: We encourage you to listen to the Black Alumni Conversation from July 15, 2020.
- Share Your Story: Stories are powerful and transformative. Dean Richards will be featuring different stories throughout the year and would like to include a broad range of students and alumni that share your own personal experiences. We want to hear your stories about race and experiences of racism (positive or negative) in your history, at Pepperdine Caruso Law, or in your legal career and how you overcame them or learned from them.
- Engage with students of color: Read the Black Law Students Association statement to understand their current experiences. You can serve as a mentor in any capacity, whether it's signing up to become an official preceptor or donating your time in a more informal capacity. Fostering communication among our current students and alumni will build a stronger alumni network and a more socially educated and compassionate group of lawyers.
- Recruit: Help us with outreach to college students of color. We have PDFs of recruitment flyers you can download and distribute to your communities, including libraries, schools, and universities. Feel free to share them on your social media channels to raise awareness about Pepperdine Caruso Law's commitment to reaching out to potential law students. If you would like to help recruiting efforts at the law school more formally, please fill out the form referenced below and we can discuss additional opportunities.
- Give: You can direct your gift of any size toward a cause about which you are passionate or that holds a special place in your heart, such as a specific student organization. You can also give towards diversity and belonging efforts generally and connect with Dean Richards at any time to discuss a specific program you are interested in supporting. To donate, follow the donation link and select Diversity Enhancement Fund, Diversity Scholarship, or Other to specify an organization and your desired gift.
- Pray: As a Christian institution, we are constantly seeking God's will for our school in every season. If you would like to pray for Pepperdine Caruso Law in the area of racial justice, we would be so grateful. Micah 6:8 calls us to "do justice, love mercy, and walk humbly with our God." May this be our prayer.
Please complete this form to let us know your interest in partnering with us and we will follow up with you. We hope that you will take this opportunity to be that special changemaker for the next generation. We pledge to continue these efforts and we thank you for your dedication, action, and support for your Pepperdine Caruso Law family.
With gratitude and hope,
Assistant Dean Chalak Richards (JD '12)
Alumni Director Jessie Fahy (JD '11)
With contributions by and support of the following alumni: Monica Haider (JD '16), Aaron Echols (JD '09), Danielle Lewis (JD '17); and the Black alumni of the Board of Advisors and Dean's Council: the Honorable Andre Birotte, Jr. (JD '90), Carmen Cole (JD '01), Nazareth Haysbert (JD '12), Zna Portlock Houston ('84, JD '87), the Honorable Dwayne K. Moring ('84, JD '91), Deanna Newton (JD '17), Ambassador Pierre-Richard Prosper (JD '89), Cicely Simpson (JD '01), Jack White (JD '03), Raymond Williams (JD '92) and Jerren Wright (JD '09, MBA '11).