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David Gergen speaks on 2012 elections at advisory board luncheon with law students

Elon Law students had the opportunity to meet and mingle with the members of Elon University’s Law School Advisory Board and to hear remarks from advisory board chairman David Gergen during a luncheon held at the law school on September 18.

David Gergen speaks with Elon Law students on Sept. 18, 2012

During the event, Gergen, a former adviser to four United States presidents, delivered remarks about the 2012 presidential elections. Praising and critiquing aspects of both candidates’ campaigns, Gergen expressed the importance of this particular election.

“Often Presidents at the beginning of centuries cast a shadow across that century,” Gergen said, citing Presidents Thomas Jefferson and Theodore Roosevelt. “People who govern early in a century make a big difference.”

Tickets for the event were available to 100 students, providing them with the opportunity to converse over lunch with Elon Law Advisory Board members, including former Governor James “Jim” Hunt and former Chief Justices of the North Carolina Supreme Court, Rhoda Bryan Billings, James G. Exum, Jr., and Henry E. Frye, among many others.

Former North Carolina Governor Jim Hunt, a member of the Elon University Law School Advisory Board, speaks at the law school, Sept. 18

“The importance of Elon hosting events like lunch with the Board of Advisors is student access to the lawyers and leaders that are invested in Elon Law School,” said first-year law student Ernest Lewis. “David Gergen's speech was a great bonus. To have one of the greatest political minds in America give his time in this way is a real gift. These opportunities are rare and are vitally important to our growth as lawyer-leaders.”

Third-year law student, Erika Hunter, agreed that the lunch was an invaluable experience, especially as she thinks about her future career.

“I believe hosting events with the Board of Advisors is significant because it creates another valuable opportunity for networking in a tough economy,” Hunter said. “In addition to the networking, and perhaps the most important, we as students had a chance to influence their decision-making and give them feedback based on being students in this decade.”

Elon Law Advisory Board member A.P. Carlton, a former President of the American Bar Association, speaks with Elon Law students Gweondlyn Lewis, center, and Jenifer McCrea

After his speech, Gergen answered several questions from students in the audience before inviting former North Carolina Governor Jim Hunt to the microphone to make a few comments.

“I hope that, in addition to being good lawyers, that you will also be good leaders in our Democracy,” Hunt said. “You can do that. I hope you will decide to do that. There is a great history in this country of lawyers providing some of the best leadership in America. We need more of that. I hope you will choose to be great leaders in addition to being great lawyers.”

Student life at Elon Law is enriched through interaction with judges, attorneys, elected officials, and business leaders, including direct involvement by a distinguished Elon University Law School Advisory Board led by former presidential adviser David Gergen and including two former North Carolina governors, three former North Carolina Supreme Court chief justices, a former president of the American Bar Association, a former U.S. ambassador and chair of the American Red Cross, and numerous other business and legal leaders.


Elon Law Advisory Board member W. Randy Eaddy, right, a Partner at Kilpatrick Stockton LLP, talks with law students Caroline Johnson and Tom Prendergast







By Courtney Roller, L'13











Philip Craft,
9/19/2012 10:54 PM