J. Reuben Clark Law Society

Virtue, Liberty and Law; Rendering unto Caesar and unto God: Overview of the Inaugural Annual Conference of the UK and Ireland Chapter

The United Kingdom & Ireland Chapter of the J. Reuben Clark Law Society held its inaugural annual conference, Virtue, Liberty and Law; Rendering unto Caesar and unto God,” at the Preston Temple site in England on June 10, 2016. The chapter was delighted to welcome Elder Dallin H. Oaks of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints as keynote speaker, who was accompanied by his wife, Sister Kristen M. Oaks. Elder Oaks invited participating world religious freedom expert, Professor Cole Durham, to address the conference further during Elder Oaks’ remarks.

The chapter also welcomed other distinguished guest speakers drawn from the Law Society, the LDS Church, academia, the judiciary, and the legal profession. This notable list included the following:

Virginia Isaacson, International Chair of the J. Reuben Clark Law Society

William Atkin, Associate General Counsel for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Professor Cole Durham, Professor of Law & Founding Director of the International Center for Law and Religion Studies, J. Reuben Clark Law School, Brigham Young University (BYU)

Professor Neville Rochow S.C., Barrister (Australia), Adjunct Professor at Notre Dame Law School (Sydney) and University of Adelaide Law School, Government Relations Missionary to EU Institutions, Brussels

Professor David Kirkham, Academic Director & Professor, BYU London Centre, Senior Fellow, International Center for Law and Religion Studies, J. Reuben Clark Law School, BYU

Katie McColgan, Senior Partner, Mediator, Berry Smith LLP, Wales

David Pickup, Judge, Asylum and Immigration Tribunal, Chairman of the Mental Health Review Tribunal, England and Wales

Alison Humphreys, District Judge, Basildon County Court, England 

Professor Neville Rochow SC

Sandy Ogunbote, Magistrate, Stratford Magistrates’ Court, England

Janet Pickup, Magistrate, East Lancashire Magistrates’ Court, England

Dr Martin Steinfeld, Charnley Fellow in Law, Hughes Hall and Affiliated Lecturer, University of Cambridge

Karl Hirst, Barrister, No 5 Chambers, Birmingham, England

Robert Schwartz, General Counsel, Tyndaris LLP, London, England      

Christian Taylor, Barrister, Exchange Chambers, Manchester, England

Peter Rigby, Serious Injury Fee Earner, Fletchers Solicitors, Southport, England

Attending the conference were over one hundred participants of various faiths who traveled from across England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales. They were drawn from the spectrum of the legal profession and included students. Law Society members in Europe were also invited to attend the conference and the organizers were delighted to welcome the Chair of the Frankfurt, Germany Chapter. Notably, for many of the participants, this was the first Law Society event they had attended.

Panelists from left to right: Magistrate Janet Pickup, Judge David Pickup, District Judge Alison Humphreys and Magistrate Sandy Ogunbote

Amongst the topics addressed by individual speakers and panellists were: The Mission of the J. Reuben Clark Law SocietyOur Civic Responsibility as Legally-trained Persons of Faith, To Brexit or Not to Brexit, Religious Freedom in the British Isles, Ethics and law, Unique Challenges of Legal Practice and Balancing Multiple Responsibilities, Game Theory: The Prisoner’s Dilemma, and the Book of Mormon and Lawyers as Peacemakers: Giving Back Parties’ Their Agency through MediationThere was also a session specifically for prospective and current law students.

The full day conference was generously sponsored by Devonshires Solicitors, with whose support the conference was free to attend. The feedback subsequent to the conference demonstrated it was a resounding success with many exclaiming they hoped to bring friends and colleagues to the conference to be held in 2017.


By: Charlotte Steinfeld

Posted: July 29, 2016