Dean’s Reception honors Elon Law Class of 2015

Members of the Class of 2015 at Elon Law welcomed family members and friends to the law school on May 22 to celebrate achievements of the class on the eve of commencement ceremonies.

Joined by the faculty and administration of the law school, members of the class were recognized for pro bono service and excellence in academic achievement, scholarship and advocacy.

In welcoming remarks, law school dean Luke Bierman described the challenges facing society today and the opportunities ahead for the Class of 2015.

“Opportunity is what we are all about,” Bierman said. “It’s going to be a new profession and you get to build it. You get to decide what it should look like. That’s a very exciting opportunity. There are going to be new clients, people who need new kinds of legal services that you’re going to help. That’s a very exciting opportunity. There are going to be new ways to deliver legal services that certainly my generation can’t even begin to image. You’re going to invent it. You’re going to do things that we can’t even imagine today and that is very exciting. So you’re brave to be pioneers. You’re brave to be the ones to take on these challenges and ultimately to solve them. That’s a very exciting opportunity. And of course you’re well prepared to do that. You’re well prepared because you went to law school here.”

Bierman recognized the Class of 2015 for contributing 4,965 hours of pro bono service during their time in law school, averaging more than 60 hours of volunteer legal service per student.


Melissa Duncan, associate director of the office of student and professional life, presented the following awards to individual members of the Class of 2015:

Daniel Watts received the North Carolina Advocates for Justice Award, recognizing a graduating student for demonstrated commitment to public service and excellence in trial and/or appellate advocacy.

Emily Seawell received the ALI-CLE Award, recognizing a graduate who best represents a combination of scholarship and leadership, the qualities embodied by the parent organizations, the American Law Institute and the American Bar Association.

Olivia Farah received the Clinical Legal Education Association’s Outstanding Student Award for excellence in the field determined by representing clients; excellence in student’s course work and exploring the legal, ethical, strategic and pertinent issues raised; as well as the students’ contribution to the clinical community.

Campbell Thomas received the International Academy of Trial Lawyers Award for demonstrating an overall ability in trial advocacy by high achievement in trial practice and evidence, as well as in pleading and procedure courses.

Alex Rogers received the Distinguished Service Award, established by the faculty of the law school to recognize “service to the law school through engagement in and contribution to the life of the school and demonstrated commitment to its mission.”

John Boschini received the Marshall-Thompson Award for Outstanding Achievement in Constitutional Law Studies, an award created by Barron Thompson L’09, providing the recipient with a stipend in recognition of excellence in the study of Constitutional Law.

Brittany Teague received the National Association of Women Lawyers Recognition for academic achievement, motivation, tenacity and drive and for recognized potential to contribute to the advancement of women in the society.

Jennifer Biggerstaff received the North Carolina State Bar Student Pro bono Award, recognizing the public service rendered by one law student at each North Carolina Law School and presented annually at the October meeting of the North Carolina State Bar.

The following students received North Carolina Bar Association Pro bono Recognition Awards for providing at least 75 hours of pro bono legal service in the community: Chad Archer, Jennifer Biggerstaff, John Boschini, Blinn Cushman, Julie Dogan, Jordan Funke, Christopher Genheimer, Devon Johnson, Cecelia Jones, Sarah Kettles, Ernest Lewis, Jr., Nicholas Livengood, Nina Omeaku, Katherine Perkins, Genna Petre, Emily Pfeiffer, Timothy Prosky, Alex Rogers, Emily Seawell, Shea Shadrick, Hayley Sherman, Kelly Stage, Samuele Viscuso, Lani Willcockson and Michael Wynne.

The following students were inducted into the Elon Law Chapter of The Order of Barristers in recognition for achievement in moot court and mock trial activities: John Boschini, Michael Costolo, Timothy Dugan, Jordan Funke, Genna Petre, Joshua Rotenstreich, Brianne Shadrick, Campbell Thomas, Zachary Usher and Daniel Watts.

The following students were recognized as Dean’s Fellows at Elon Law. Dean’s Fellows are upper level students selected for their academic achievement, commitment to the Elon Law community, aptitude for expert learning strategies and interest in education. They mentor first-year law students and facilitate implementation of the law school’s academic support curriculum. The Class of 2015 Dean’s Fellows at Elon Law are: Chad Archer, Jennifer Biggerstaff, Ashley Binns, Christopher Genheimer, Jenny Maresca, Craig Martin, Mitchell Montgomery, Katherine Perkins, Genna Petre, Kelly Stage, Brittany Teague and Daniel Watts.

Class Gift Committee co-chairs Wilburn Oziogu and Samuele Viscuso announced that the gift of the Class of 2015 was a Howard Miller contemporary grandfather clock to be located in Cemala Commons at the law school.

Information about Elon Law’s Class of 2015 Commencement weekend is available here.