UC Hastings is pleased to present the lineup for Spring 2016 Distinguished Lecture Series, featuring esteemed experts in environmental, international, and procedural law.
“For decades, UC Hastings has brought stellar public figures to campus as part of our distinguished lecture series,” says Acting Chancellor and Dean David Faigman. “These speakers have included Supreme Court Justices, government and non-profit leaders from around the world, leading journalists, and other renowned public intellectuals and thought-leaders. This year’s line-up follows in that tradition with three outstanding speakers.”
Please see below for further detail on each.
“Climate Change and Human Rights After Paris,” by Professor John H. Knox, UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights and the Environment Henry C. Lauerman Professor of International Law
Professor Knox recently participated in the historic United Nations climate change negotiations in Paris. He is the Henry C. Lauerman Professor of International Law at Wake Forest University, where he teaches courses on human rights law, international environmental law, and international trade law. In 2012, the UN Human Rights Council appointed him to be the first UN Independent Expert on human rights and the environment, and in 2015, it renewed his mandate for three years and changed his title to Special Rapporteur. In the course of his work for the United Nations, he has conducted consultations around the world and issued a series of public reports on the relationship between human rights and environmental protection. Information about the mandate is available at his website, www.srenvironment.org.
VIDEO: This event took place February 1, 2016, at 3:30 pm in the Alumni Reception Center. Please click here to watch a video of the lecture.
About the Gordon Mathis Riley Memorial Lecture Series: This series is funded by a generous gift to UC Hastings from the family of Gordon Mathis Riley, a first-year law student at UC Hastings who died suddenly on December 14, 2012, at the age of 30. Riley, of Park City, Utah, was a graduate of UC Santa Barbara, where he studied philosophy. He previously attended the Peak and Island Schools in Hong Kong, Scotch College in Australia, The Hong Kong International School and Park City High School. Riley loved the study of law, philosophy, big-wave surfing, skiing, yoga, and writing. He had a passion for preserving the world’s coastal and mountain environments. His favorite times were on the waves in Hong Kong, Australia, Indonesia and California, and he adored the mountains of Utah. He is survived by his parents, Robert and Shardel, his sister, Meredith, and his brother, Mitchell.
Gordon’s family established this lecture series “…. as a fitting tribute to the life and interests of our son and brother, Gordon Mathis Riley, and as a legacy for his classmates at UC Hastings. His passion for the environment, his dedication to yoga and to spiritual thinking, and his abiding interest in outdoor activities resonate strongly with the intention of this lecture series.”
March 2, 2016: “America’s Role in a Changing Middle East and a Changing World,” by Ambassador William J. Burns, President of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
Bill Burns is president of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, the oldest international affairs think tank in the United States. Ambassador Burns retired from the U.S. Foreign Service in 2014 after a thirty-three-year diplomatic career. He holds the highest rank in the Foreign Service, career ambassador, and is only the second serving career diplomat in history to become deputy secretary of state.
Prior to his tenure as deputy secretary, Ambassador Burns served from 2008 to 2011 as under secretary for political affairs. He was ambassador to Russia from 2005 to 2008, assistant secretary of state for Near Eastern affairs from 2001 to 2005, and ambassador to Jordan from 1998 to 2001. His other posts in the Foreign Service include: executive secretary of the State Department and special assistant to former secretaries of state Warren Christopher and Madeleine Albright; minister-counselor for political affairs at the U.S. embassy in Moscow; acting director and principal deputy director of the State Department’s policy planning staff; and special assistant to the president and senior director for Near East and South Asian affairs at the National Security Council.
RSVP: Please click here to register and for more information. The lecture will be immediately followed by a reception.
About the Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens Memorial Lecture Series: UC Hastings established the Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens Lecture Series to honor the memory, life, and work of Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens, a member of the UC Hastings class of 1989. Based on consultation with his family, this series emphasizes law and public policy as used in practice to advance global understanding and peace. "Gathering experts to discuss law and foreign policy as it relates to actual legal practice in the promotion of global understanding presents a fitting opportunity to further the legacy of Chris's style of diplomacy and his life's work," said Tom Stevens, Ambassador Stevens' brother.
April 7, 2016: Presented by Pamela S. Karlan, Kenneth and Harle Montogomery Professor of Public Interest and Co-Director, Supreme Court Litigation Clinic of Stanford Law School.
An innovative and prolific scholar and award-winning teacher, Pamela S. Karlan is co-director of the school’s Supreme Court Litigation Clinic, where students litigate live cases before the Court. One of the nation’s leading experts on voting and the political process, she has served as a commissioner on the California Fair Political Practices Commission, an assistant counsel and cooperating attorney for the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, and a Deputy Assistant Attorney General in the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice (where she received the Attorney General’s Award for Exceptional Service – the department’s highest award for employee performance – as part of the team responsible for implementing the Supreme Court’s decision in United States v. Windsor). Professor Karlan is the co-author of leading casebooks on constitutional law, constitutional litigation, and the law of democracy, as well as numerous scholarly articles.
Before joining the Stanford Law School faculty in 1998, she was a professor of law at the University of Virginia School of Law and served as a law clerk to Justice Harry A. Blackmun of the U.S. Supreme Court and Judge Abraham D. Sofaer of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York. Karlan is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers, and the American Law Institute.
RSVP: This event will be held April 7, 2016, at 3:30 pm in the Alumni Reception Center. Registration information to come.
About the Mathew O. Tobriner Memorial Lectures: “Mathew O. Tobriner was one of the finest justices ever to sit on the California Supreme Court. His opinions, always elegantly crafted, always tuned to the role of the law in protecting Individuals against preventable harms and the abuses of and government and corporate power, came to be studied by law students and lawyers throughout the country. And his personal warmth and enthusiasm inspired love and devotion in all who knew him. So it was natural and predictable that upon his death in 1982 his closest friends and admirers would join with his relatives to find a suitable public way to keep his legacy alive.” - Hon. Joseph R. Grodin, Retired Associate Justice, California Supreme Court; Distinguished Emeritus Professor, UC Hastings College of the Law. Click here to learn more about the Mathew O. Tobriner Memorial Lectures.