Yale Law School to Hold "Rebellious Lawyering" Conference

The fifth annual “Rebellious Lawyering” Conference will be held at Yale Law School, 127 Wall St., Feb. 19-21. The conference will bring together practitioners, law students, community activists/advocates, and professors from around the country to discuss innovative ways to fight for progressive social change.

Panels will explore topics ranging from “Rebellious Lawyering in Rural Communities” to “Trying Times in Criminal Defense.” Each panel brings together speakers from different areas of expertise to explore subjects such as non-traditional methods of legal representation, alternative approaches to impact litigation, and the challenges of advocacy for traditionally underrepresented groups and individuals.

“This year’s speakers include a federal district court judge, the director of a workfare rights organization, and a youth advocate working to reform the foster care system,” said Law School student Tal Klement, who is the conference organizer. “We’re especially excited that, for the first time in the history of the conference, several international speakers will be joining us.”

The keynote address will be given by Sister Helen Jean Prejean, C.S.J., on Saturday, Feb. 20, 6 p.m. Sister Helen is author of “Dead Man Walking: An Eyewitness Account of the Death Penalty in the United States,” which was made into an award-winning film starring Susan Sarandon and Sean Penn. Sister Helen began ministering to death row inmates in the early 1980s and devotes her energies to educating the public about the death penalty. She served as a member of the board of the National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty, 1985-1995, and chaired the board, 1993-1995.

The registration fee for the conference is $10; the fee may be waived in cases of hardship. Housing is available for student attendees.

This year’s conference is sponsored by the following associations: Black Law Students; Disabled Law Students; Latino Law Students; Pacific Islander, Asian, and Native American Law Students; South Asian Law Students; as well as by the Orville H. Schell Jr. Center for International Human Rights, Yale Environmental Law Association, Yale Journal of Law and Feminism, Yale Law School Career Development Office, Yale Law and Technology Society, and Yale Law Women.

Pre-registration is recommended. Online registration is available at the conference website: www.law.yale.edu/reb-law. For further information about the panels and sessions, call Klement at (203) 432-4858. For information about registration and housing, e-mail amanda.moore@yale.edu.

Conference Highlights

Friday, Feb. 19

7-9 p.m. “Models of Activism in New Haven”

Saturday, Feb. 20

Panel Session 1: 9 a.m. - 10:45 a.m.

“Changing Faces: Emerging Issues in Immigration”: Karin Wang, Asian Pacific American Legal Center, Los Angeles; Tito Sinha, Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund, N.Y.; Mike Wishnie, New York University Clinical Programs; Renee Saucedo, INS Watch, Ella Baker Center for Human Rights, San Francisco

“Advocating for Children and Families”: Darlene Jorif, Legal Aid Society Juvenile Rights Division, N.Y.; James Bell, Youth Law Center, San Francisco; Alfred Perez, California Youth Connection, San Francisco; Kim Brooks, Childrens’ Law Center, Ky.

Panel Session 2: 11 a.m. - 12:45 p.m.

“International Economic and Social Human Rights”: Hassan Jabareen, ADULAH, Jerusalem, Israel; Roger Normand, Center for Economic and Social Rights, N.Y.; James Bell, Youth Law Center, San Francisco; Ravi Nair, South Asian Human Rights Documentation Center, New Delhi, India

“Queer Rights”: (Panelists to be announced)

Panel Session 3: 1:45-3:30 p.m.

“Corporations and the Public Interest”: Karen Riverwind, activist, Portland, Ore.; Inge Fryklund, Tactics, Inc., Chicago: Beth Noveck, Information Society Project, Yale Law School; Robert Weissman, Essential Action, Washington, D.C.

“Rebellious Lawyering in Rural Communities”: Steve Heeley, Deputy General Counsel, Gila River Indian Community, Ariz.; Shannon Holiday, Alabama ACLU; Ralph Paige, Federation of Southern, Cooperatives/Land Assistance Fund, Ga.; Nancy Thompson, attorney/consultant, Neb.

Panel Session 4: 3:45-5:30 p.m.

“Trying Times in Criminal Defense”: The Honorable Terry Hatter, Federal District Court, Los Angeles; Eddie Ellis, Neighborhood Defender Service of Harlem, N.Y.; Roxanna Guttierez, public defender, N.Y.

“Organizing, Activism, and Lawyering for Worker’s Rights”: Steve Williams, POWER, San Francisco; Jane Alper, Disability Law Center, Boston

Keynote Address:

6-7 p.m. Sister Helen Prejean

Sunday, Feb. 21

9-10 a.m.

“Using the Internet for Advocacy Presentation”: Ari Schwartz, Center for Democracy and Technology, Washington, D.C.

Panel Session 5: 10-11:45 a.m.

“Human Rights in the United States”: Brenda Smith, Washington College of Law, American University, Washington, D.C.; Tonya McClary, NAACP Legal Defense Fund, N.Y.

“Environmental Justice/Environmental Conservation”: Luke Cole, California Rural Legal Assistance Foundation’s Center on Race, Poverty & the Environment; Leslie Lowe, New York City Environmental Justice Alliance; Richard Strahan, GreenWorld; Kikanza Ramsey, Labor Community Strategy Center, Los Angeles

Share this with Facebook Share this with Twitter Share this with LinkedIn Share this with Email Print this

Media Contact

Gila Reinstein: gila.reinstein@yale.edu, 203-432-1325