8th Annual Supreme Court Watch: Preview of a Critical Year in Law and Politics

5.75 Law and Legal CLE Credits | WSBA Activity ID #1023518

Professor Andrew Siegel leads a slate of appellate and Supreme Court attorneys in a discussion of strategies and tactics for arguing cases at the SCOTUS level. Professor Siegel provides an analysis of the politics involved along with the law involved in nominating and confirming judicial appointees. This robust program includes a critical review of recent cases and a preview of upcoming cases in this election year. See if the speculations by these experts were right in light of the recent election and likely SCOTUS nominee.

2016 Supreme Court


Recorded:  10/21/2016
Credits:  5.75 Law and Legal CLE | WSBA Activity ID #1023518
Length: 5 hours, 45 minutes

Featured Speakers:
Andrew Siegel, David Skover, Brooke Coleman, Deborah Ahrens, Diane Dick, Jack Kirkwood, Steve Tapia, Eric Miller, Leonard Feldman, Jay Stansell

8:15-8:45 a.m.

Registration and Coffee Service

8:45-9 a.m.

Welcome and Introductions

9-10:30 a.m.

Session 1 - Strategies and Tactics: A Practical Review of Arguing Your Case in Front of the Supreme Court of the United States


Eric Miller, Perkins Coie

Jay Stansell, Attorney at Law

Leonard Feldman, Peterson Wampold Rosato Luna Knopp

A slate of appellate and Supreme Court attorneys who have argued before SCOTUS discuss their experience in front of the highest court in the land, and give practice tips on how, and what, and why, and when, and who.

10:30-10:45 a.m.


10:45 a.m.-12 noon

Session 2 - The State of the Court: A Critical Year in Law and Politics


Professor Andrew Siegel, Seattle University School of Law

Professor Siegel gives his annual State of the Court analysis, with a focus on the politics as well as the law involved in nominating and confirming judicial appointees, including the nomination of Judge Merrick Garland in an election year.

12 noon-1 p.m.

 Lunch (on your own)

1-2:45 p.m

Session 3 - Preview of Key Cases in the 2016-2017 Judicial Year


Criminal Law - Professor Deborah Ahrens, Seattle University School of Law
Anti-Trust - Professor Jack Kirkwood, Seattle University School of Law
Intellectual Property - Professor Steve Tapia, Seattle University School of Law

2:45-3 p.m.


3-4:30 p.m.

Session 4 - 4 on 4: Issues for a Divided Court


First Amendment - Professor David Skover, Seattle University School of Law
Civil Procedure - Professor Brooke Coleman, Seattle University School of Law
Bankruptcy & Securities - Professor Diane Dick, Seattle University School of Law

4:30 p.m.

Evaluations and Adjourn

2016 Supreme Court


Program Chair

Andrew Siegel

Professor Andrew Siegel, the Associate Dean for Planning and Strategic Initiatives, joined the law school in 2007 after five years teaching at the University of South Carolina School of Law. Before entering the legal academy, Professor Siegel served as a law clerk to Judge Pierre N. Leval of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit and to Justice John Paul Stevens of the United States Supreme Court and practiced as a litigation associate in the New York office of Wilmer, Cutler & Pickering. Professor Siegel graduated summa cum laude from Yale College, has a master's degree in history from Princeton University, and graduated summa cum laude and first in his class from New York University School of Law, where he was also an Executive Editor of the New York University Law Review.

Professor Siegel researches and writes about constitutional theory, contemporary constitutional and public law, American legal history, and criminal procedure. He is a nationally recognized expert on the United States Supreme Court, who frequently lectures on that subject in a variety of academic and professional settings. He is a co-author of The Supreme Court Sourcebook (with Richard Seamon, Joe Thai, and Kathryn Watts) and his scholarship has appeared in a variety of journals including the Texas, Fordham, and UC-Davis Law Reviews and the American Journal of Criminal Law. He is currently at work on a variety of projects including an annotated collection of Justice Stevens's writings, a cultural history of the first generation of American law schools, and articles exploring the structure of due process doctrine, the concept of "constitutional culture," and the evolution of thinking about the constitutionality of public school uniforms and dress codes. His writings for the popular press include "Nice Disguise: Alito's Frightening Geniality," (The New Republic, November 15, 2005) and "Farewell to Justice Stevens from those who Knew Him Well" (Washington Post, April 9, 2010) (with Joe Thai and Eduardo Penalver).

As Associate Dean, Professor Siegel is responsible for investigating, developing, and overseeing new programs and initiatives including advanced degree programs, collaborations with other schools, and the law school's new satellite campus; for coordinating long-term planning; and for advising the Dean on pressing strategic matters, including regulatory, accreditation, and rankings issues. In his years at SU, Professor Siegel has chaired the Executive, Faculty Appointments, and Curriculum Committees, coordinated the Faculty Law Firm initiative, and served in a variety of other leadership capacities.


Deborah Ahrens, Seattle University School of Law

Deborah Ahrens is a tenured Associate Professor who teaches and writes about criminal law, criminal procedure, and evidence. Before joining the faculty at Seattle University, Professor Ahrens served as a law clerk for Judge Amalya Kearse of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, a legal fellow at the ACLU's Drug Policy Litigation Project, an Assistant Public Defender at the Richland County (South Carolina) Public Defender, and a Visiting Assistant Professor of Law at the University of South Carolina School of Law. She earned an AB in Public Policy from Brown University, a Masters in Public Policy from Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government, and her JD Magna Cum Laude from New York University, where she was the senior articles editor of the Law Review.

Professor Ahrens' scholarship focuses on the cultural significance of contemporary policing practices and criminal sanctioning regimes, with particular emphasis on drug policy and on the regulation of student speech and conduct. Her articles have appeared in a variety of journals including the American Criminal Law Review, the Florida State Law Review, and the Missouri Law Review. Her current research focuses on the Supreme Court's recent embrace of a broader understanding of the role of the criminal defense attorney in its criminal procedure decisions, on the rise of school uniforms and restrictive student dress codes, and on some of the unexplored frontiers in the legal regulation of alternative criminal sanctions. She is highly regarded teacher who was voted Professor of the Year by the May 2014 graduating class and a frequent speaker at academic and professional events on a wide variety of criminal procedure, evidence, and sentencing issues.

Brooke Coleman, Seattle University School of Law

Professor Coleman's research and teaching interests focus on procedure and procedural justice. Her work has been published or is forthcoming in the Boston College Law Review, Notre Dame Law Review, and Tulane Law Review, among others. She is also the co-author of an innovative civil procedure casebook, Learning Civil Procedure.

Prior to joining the faculty of Seattle University, Professor Coleman was a Thomas C. Grey Fellow at Stanford Law School. She also clerked for Honorable David F. Levi, district judge in the Eastern District of California and then-chair of the Standing Committee on the Federal Rules of Practice and Procedure. During that time, she worked on a variety of procedural amendments, including the civil rule amendments to account for electronic discovery and the appellate rule amendments governing citation to unpublished opinions. Before her clerkship, she practiced as an attorney at Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati and Gunderson Dettmer Stough Villeneuve Franklin & Hachigian in Palo Alto, California.

Professor Coleman's teaching interests include civil procedure, advanced litigation, and federal courts. She has received numerous honors for her teaching, including the law school's Outstanding Faculty Award in 2013, 2015, and 2016.

Diane Dick, Seattle University School of Law

Professor Dick joined the faculty in 2011 after receiving her LL.M. in Taxation from the University of Florida Levin College of Law, where she focused on business taxation and served as a Graduate Tax Scholar. From 2005-2010, she was an Associate at Bilzin Sumberg, where she concentrated her practice in mergers and acquisitions, corporate finance, capital market transactions, debt restructuring and loan workouts. While in private practice, Professor Dick's matters included representing the borrower of a fully secured $100 million asset-based credit facility and serving as a special corporate counsel to the debtors in the bankruptcy reorganization of a multibillion dollar joint venture.

Professor Dick focuses her scholarship on the intersections of tax, bankruptcy and corporate law. She has written extensively about commercial restructurings under Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code and the litigation of disputes pertaining to complex commercial financing arrangements. Professor Dick's work has been selected via blind review for highly competitive conferences, including the 16th Annual Yale/Stanford/Harvard Junior Faculty Forum at Harvard Law School, the Emerging Scholars in Commercial and Consumer Law panel of the 2015 American Association of Law Schools Annual Meeting, and the Third Annual Center for Law, Economics & Finance (C-Leaf) Junior Faculty Business and Financial Law Workshop at George Washington University Law School. Her scholarship has also been showcased on leading corporate and bankruptcy law websites, including The New York Times Dealbook, the Harvard Law School Bankruptcy Roundtable, The CLS Blue Sky Blog (Columbia Law School's Blog on Corporations and Capital Markets), the American Bankruptcy Institute's podcast series, and Reuters BreakingViews.

Professor Dick is a member in good standing of the Washington, Florida, and District of Columbia bar associations, and has been an active member of the Business Law Sections of the Florida Bar and the Washington State Bar. A frequent speaker at business and real estate CLEs, she served on the Editorial Committee for the Florida Bar Business Law Section's report providing guidance for Florida lawyers delivering legal opinions in business and real estate finance transactions, and currently serves on the Washington State Bar Legal Opinions Committee.

Leonard Feldman, Peterson Wampold Rosato Luna Knopp

Leonard grew up in the Seattle area and graduated from Mercer Island High School. He attended the University of Washington, where he graduated summa cum laude in Psychology. After college, he attended Harvard Law School, where he was twice awarded the Sears Prize (given to the top two students on the basis of grades) and graduated magna cum laude in 1991. He then worked as a judicial law clerk for Ninth Circuit Judge Jerome Farris.

Since completing his Ninth Circuit clerkship, Leonard has specialized in appellate practice before the Ninth Circuit and the Washington appellate courts. In addition to briefing and arguing countless appeals, Leonard is a member of and was previously Chair of the King County Bar Association's Appellate Section, is a member of the Washington Appellate Lawyers Association, and is currently a District Coordinator for the Ninth Circuit Pro Bono Program and a member of the Ninth Circuit's mentor program. He is also a frequent writer and speaker on topics relating to appellate practice. Among other articles, he has co-authored three articles with Washington Court of Appeals Judge Stephen Dwyer regarding appellate brief writing, oral argument, and discretionary review.

Leonard has received many accolades for his work, including being listed in Best Lawyers in America (Appellate Practice); selected as "Local Litigation Star," Benchmark Litigation (Commercial Litigation); and selected as one of Washington's Top 10 Appellate Law Lawyers by Washington Law and Politics. Leonard has also received two Certificates of Appreciation from the Ninth Circuit, one for his work as a Pro Bono Coordinator and the other for teaching an appellate practice course at the University of Washington School of Law that provided students with an opportunity to brief and argue a pro bono appeal in the Ninth Circuit. In 2006, he received the Washington Bar Association's Pro Bono Award for his work in appeals that raise important civil rights issues.

Leonard is admitted to practice before the U.S. Supreme Court, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth, Eighth, Ninth, and Tenth Circuits, and Washington appellate courts. He was counsel of record and argued in the United States Supreme Court in City and County of San Francisco v. Sheehan, Case No. 13-1412 (2015).

John B. Kirkwood, Seattle University School of Law

John B. Kirkwood is a Professor of Law at Seattle University School of Law and a Senior Fellow of the American Antitrust Institute. His article "Powerful Buyers and Merger Enforcement" won the Jerry S. Cohen Award for the best antitrust scholarship published in 2012. An earlier article on buyer power, "Buyer Power and Exclusionary Conduct," was quoted by the Supreme Court. His work has appeared in the Fordham Law Review, the Notre Dame Law Review, the Boston University Law Review, the George Mason Law Review, and the University of Miami Law Review, among other places. He has edited two books, spoken frequently at antitrust conferences, and consulted on many antitrust matters. He has also testified before Congress and at the hearings on predatory pricing held by the Justice Department and the Federal Trade Commission.

After graduating from Yale magna cum laude and with Honors of Exceptional Distinction in Economics, he received a masters degree in public policy and a law degree from Harvard, both with honors. He directed the Planning Office, the Evaluation Office, and the Premerger Notification Program at the FTC's Bureau of Competition in Washington, D.C. and later managed cases and investigations at the FTC's Northwest Regional Office. At Seattle University, he has received the Outstanding Faculty Award and the Dean's Medal and was an Associate Dean for five years.

Eric Miller, Perkins Coie

Eric Miller focuses on Supreme Court and appellate litigation. He has presented more than 40 appellate arguments, including 14 in the Supreme Court of the United States, and has filed more than 200 briefs in the Supreme Court.

Before joining Perkins Coie, Eric served for more than five years as an Assistant to the Solicitor General of the United States. In that capacity, he represented the government in the Supreme Court in numerous cases in a wide range of fields, including communications, energy, employment, and administrative law. In 2008, he was awarded the Attorney General's Distinguished Service Award for his conduct of national-security litigation.

Eric previously served as Deputy General Counsel of the Federal Communications Commission, where he managed the litigation division of the Commission's Office of General Counsel, which is responsible for defending the Commission's orders in federal courts of appeals. He has also served on the Appellate Staff of the Civil Division of the United States Department of Justice and in the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel.

Eric has also served as a part-time lecturer at the University of Washington School of Law, teaching Supreme Court Decision Making.

David Skover, Seattle University School of Law

Professor Skover is the co-author of several books: Tactics of Legal Reasoning (Carolina Academic Press, 1986) (with Pierre Schlag), The Death of Discourse (Westview Press, 1996; Carolina Academic Press, 2nd ed. 2005) (with Ronald K.L. Collins), The Trials of Lenny Bruce (Sourcebooks, 2002; Top Five Books, 2nd ed. 2012) (with Ronald K.L. Collins), Mania: The Story of the Outraged and Outrageous Lives That Launched a Cultural Revolution (Top Five Books, 2013) (with Ronald K.L. Collins), On Dissent: Its Meaning in America (Cambridge University Press, 2013) (with Ronald K.L. Collins), and a work-in-progress, The Judge: 26 Machiavellian Lessons.

In 2003, Skover and his coauthor, Ron Collins, successfully petitioned Governor Pataki of New York State to posthumously pardon Lenny Bruce. In 2004, Skover received the Washington ACLU First Amendment Award and Skover and Collins received the Hugh Hefner First Amendment Award for The Trials of Lenny Bruce and their pardon effort.

Additionally, Professor Skover has authored or co-authored more than twenty-five scholarly articles in various journals, including the Harvard Law Review, Yale Law Journal, Stanford Law Review, Michigan Law Review, Texas Law Review, The Nation magazine, and encyclopedia articles in Encyclopedia of the American Constitution (Macmillan, 1991), Encyclopedia of the Supreme Court of the United States (Macmillan, 2008), and Yale Bibliographical Dictionary of American Law (Yale University Press, 2009).

Professor Skover appears frequently on network affiliate television and has been quoted in the national popular press (e.g. NYT, WSJ, CSM, etc.) on a spectrum of issues ranging from constitutional law to pop media culture and theory. He also is a regionally acclaimed opera and musical theater performer. "Skover Online," his personal Web site, contains much more information on his books, articles, and presentations - and even includes selections from his musical theater recordings on the "Interests & Activities" page.

Jay Stansell, Attorney at Law

Steve Tapia, Seattle University School of Law

Steve Tapia has practiced entertainment, media and intellectual property law for over 30 years.

As in-house counsel for DIRECTV Sports Networks, he was the primary contract negotiator and rights manager for sports programming and distribution partnerships with the Seattle Mariners, Seattle Sounders, Portland Timbers, Big Sky Conference, Mountain West Conference and many other teams and conferences. Before joining DIRECTV, he was a Senior Attorney in Microsoft's Law and Corporate Affairs department. His assignments included leading Microsoft's Copyright And Trade Secret Practice Group, and advising on Microsoft's open source licensing strategies and policies. He also was the primary counsel for MSN, MSNBC, Slate, and Microsoft's corporate marketing and advertising operations. In addition to legal positions, he also led Microsoft's business development teams for ebooks and entertainment. Prior to joining Microsoft, Professor Tapia was in-house counsel for HBO (specializing in motion picture and television production) and also KCET (Los Angeles' PBS station). He began his legal career as an intellectual property and media law litigator at Loeb and Loeb, Los Angeles. He frequently speaks on copyright law, social networking, online advertising issues, media law, first amendment issues and digital downloads of entertainment content.

He is admitted to practice before the U.S. Districts Courts for the Northern, Eastern, Central and Southern Districts of California and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. He is a member of the California State Bar. He is a former President of the Yale Club of Southern California. He served on the Board of Trustees of the Seattle Symphony Orchestra from 2006-2009, Interim Music Director of Faith Lutheran Church (Redmond, WA) and is a professional musician.

2016 Supreme Court


General Registration - $175

SU School of Law Alumni - $145