Jul 2013 Newsletter



How Student Chapters Shaped the JRCLS: Celebrating 25 Years of the Law Society

This is the third in a series celebrating the 25th year since the organization of the J.Reuben Clark Law Society. These articles are authored by members of the JRCLS History Committee.

An annual conference. Joint symposia and forums with acclaimed law schools. Greater numbers of active attorney members of the Law Society. Strengthened testimonies and religious conviction in the practice of law. What do these have in common? They all stem from student chapters of the JRCLS.

After a decade of expanding into an international organization, the next big demographic change to the J. Reuben Clark Law Society came with the introduction of student chapters. In 2001 Bill Atkin (then Chair of the International Board of Directors) asked Nancy Van Slooten (long time BOD member) to start organizing student chapters. Before that a few law schools in the country had LDS student organizations, but they didn't fall under the auspices of the Law Society. Bill wanted to make sure the students received the support the Law Society could give them, and also recognized that students involved in the JRCLS were more likely to become active attorney members. Read more. . .


Koalas, Gaols, and Smiles "Down Under" at Adelaide Regional Conference

For three days, (Friday 7 June to Sunday 9 June 2013), there were smiles "Down Under" on faces of J. Reuben Clark Law Society members and their guests. They were participating in the 8th annual Australasia- Pacific-Asia regional conference held this year in Adelaide, Australia. Participants came from all states of Australia, New Zealand, and as far away as Shanghai, China for the opportunity to renew old friendships, meet new members and students, participate in stimulating seminars, dance the night away at the gala dinner and be spiritually nourished at the closing devotional.

This was a regional conference with a difference. For eight years, the chapters of Australia and New Zealand have taken their turn in hosting the annual conference. This year in hosting the conference, the Adelaide chapter partnered with the University of Adelaide Law School Research Unit for the Study of Society Law and Religion (RUSSLR) and a local charity (Catherine House) for two of the events. The chapter also worked with well-known Australian artists who donated works for auction at the conference gala dinner. The conference profits and the proceeds from the art auction will be used by Catherine House in its work assisting homeless women to find new lives through shelter, education, and employment. Read more. . .


You Will Return: From Law Practice to Mission and Back Again

When my wife Kay and I were called to serve as mission president in the Congo, we knew that a marvelous and challenging experience lay before us. While we directed so much effort to preparation for departure and service, we also made preparations for our return. For me, that included returning to my law practice. Read more. . .


JRCLS Co-Hosts Religious Liberty Festival Event in Sao Paulo, Brazil

Dozens of entrepreneurs gathered on the night of Tuesday, May 21, at the Business Franklyn Covey Brazil offices in Sao Paolo to mark the start of a week-long Religious Liberty Festival in São Paulo. The various religious freedom events, which took place between 21 and 25 May, was overseen by the Religious Freedom Commission of the Brazil Bar Association, Sao Paulo (OAB / SP), in partnership with the Adventist Church and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-days Saints. Read more. . .


Miracles in India: Judge William Sheffield's Journey, Part 2

"God moves in mysterious ways his wonders to perform," said the poet Cowper. In William Sheffield's case, God's wonders all began after a long day in the beer tents. It was 1976. Bill was at Oktoberfest in Munich with his wife Leslie. He returned to his hotel thinking about Indira Gandhi's legal problems. Mrs. Gandhi had failed to be reelected as prime minister, and her opponents were trying to humiliate her through a Commission of Inquiry. Brother Sheffield had read the legal defenses her attorneys were asserting, and had found them to be wholly inadequate. He felt prompted to write a letter to Mrs. Gandhi, in which he argued that her attorneys' defenses were going to result in one thing: jail time! He addressed the letter "Indira Gandhi, New Delhi, India" and sent it off. Read more. . .


New JRCLS Chapter Launched in Cusco, Peru

The first meeting of the Cusco, Peru, chapter of the Law Society was held Sunday, May 19, 2013, at the Inti Raymi stake center, with Gloria Castillo presiding as chapter chair. Both attorneys and non-attorneys attended the event. The activity provided information for young people who wish to study abroad and featured a presentation by JRCLS member David Torres, who received an LLM degree from the J. Reuben Clark Law School in Provo, UT. The well-attended presentation generated interest and enthusiasm for a second activity, which was scheduled for the following month. Read more. . .


Staying Active in the Law While Staying at Home

The JRCLS Women in the Law blog, available at: http://www.jrclswomen.blogspot.com/, is an excellent resource for female members of the Law Society and is updated often with news of events, advice, and great stories about notable Law Society members.

Recently, JRCLS Media Committee member Megan Needham wrote a blog post about how women who have chosen to leave the workforce while raising children may stay active in the legal community (See Megan's post
here). A few weeks prior, JRCLS conference and events co-chair and former D.C. chapter chair Ginny Isaacson also discussed how she stays involved (See Ginny's post here). Read more. . .


Freedom of Religion Helped Create the American Identity

Professor David M. Kirkham, Senior Fellow for Comparative Law and International Policy and Regional Advisor for the European Union and Council of Europe of the International Center for Law and Religion Studies and professor in the Department of Political Science, Brigham Young University, presented the third lecture in the 2013 Religious Freedom Discussion Series, "Freedom of Conscience and the American Identity," on 10 July 2013 at Brigham Young University. Read more. . .


Profiles in Service

Since our last newsletter, several JRCLS members have been called to serve in significant positions inside and outside of the LDS Church. Thank you for your service! As always, readers are encouraged to alert us to Law Society members doing great things by emailing mediacommittee@jrcls.org.

First, several JRCLS members were called as mission presidents in the last few months (or who were not noted in our March newsletter). Robert Bruce Lochead who graduated from Columbia Law School in 1978, will serve as mission president in Ukraine Donetsk, along with his wife Klynn Walker Lochead. Brother Lochead currently works in Moscow as Church Area Legal Counsel. Additionally, Cory H. Maxwell, a 1979 BYU law grad will be president of the Australia Melbourne mission; Ryan M. Tew who graduated with a BYU JD in 1980 will preside over the California Long Beach mission; and James M. Dester, who graduated BYU in 1982, will be president of the Honduras San Pedro Sula West mission. Read more. . .