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A message from Law Alumni Association President, Julie Braman Kane, BA ’90, JD ’93

Dear Miami Law Alumni and Friends:
First and foremost, I hope to see you during our exciting Homecoming & Alumni Weekend! The week will kick off with on Thursday, November 4th with a Celebration of former Assistant Dean for Professional Development, William P. VanderWyden III, JD ’84  (“Dean V”)  and Class Reunions for the classes of 1981, 2000, 2001 and 2011 right here at  the law school. Friday evening, November 5th, the class of 1991 will celebrate their reunion and the University of Miami’s Homecoming Celebration “Illuminated by Ever Brighter: The Campaign for Our Next Century” will take over the campus for what is promised to be a fun and interactive night for everyone – be sure to stop by the School of Law’s tent to catch up. 

We will round out the weekend on Saturday, November 6th, with our most celebrated tradition: the 72nd Annual “Morning Spirits” & Homecoming Breakfast. The LAA worked diligently in recruiting Preet Bharara, former U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, bestselling author of Doing Justice, and host of "Stay Tuned with Preet," as our breakfast speaker. You can register and learn a bit more about all that is happening here. 
If you haven’t heard, We are delighted to welcome interim Dean Nell Jessup Newton to our school as we undertake a search for a permanent Dean.  The Office of Law Development and Alumni Relations sat down with Dean Newton to interview her. You may read the full interview here. She is excited to lead the School of Law in this transitional period and has already met with the Alumni leadership.

Finally, to become more engaged with our alma mater, please fill out this form. There are many ways for alumni to stay connected to the university. We hope you find fulfillment in sharing your time and expertise.
Along with the members of the Law Alumni Association, I look forward to seeing many of you at the Alumni Weekend & Homecoming festivities. I welcome the engagement of every one of you with our Alma Mater during this time of transition, and I am grateful for your continuing support as we forge ahead. As always, should you have any questions, please reach out to me at any time at
Thank you for everything you do for our school.

Julie Braman Kane, BA '90, JD '93
President, Law Alumni Association
Remember to connect and keep up with the latest from your Law Alumni Association on the web, and on FacebookLinkedIn, and Twitter. If you have any accomplishments you would like to share, Submit a Class Note and we will update the Class Notes page with your story!


In June, we lost a dear alumna of the University’s School of Law in the collapse of the Champlain Towers in Surfside, Florida. Nicky earned her J.D. from the University of Miami. She is remembered for her strong work ethic, humor, and ability to put everyone around her at ease, leaving a profound loss for all who knew her. Please consider making a gift today to the Nicole "Nicky" Langesfeld, J.D. '19 Memorial Law Scholarship to honor her meaningful connection to the University of Miami.

Sebastian’s Closet is a Student Bar Association-led initiative that provides business professional attire for Miami Law students to borrow for interviews, networking events, presentations, and other occasions. After being inactive for a few years, the current Student Bar Association reopened Sebastian’s Closet. Sebastian’s Closet is accepting donations for all business professional attire and accessories in all sizes and colors and is particularly in need of menswear. Any alumni who wish to make a donation or have inquiries regarding this project can contact 3L SBA Senator, Carson Proctor, at

Mark your calendars for Thursday, October 7 for the third annual University of Miami #OneDayOneU Giving Day! In just 24-hours, 'Canes around the globe will unite to support the areas of the University that mean the most to them. We hope that we can count on you, as a member of our 'Canes Law community, to support the School of Law and our students. Learn more here!

The Law Alumni Association is open for business and available to you. Please reach out to us at 305.284.3470 or by email at
Contribute to the School of Law Scholarship Fund


Miami Law Swears in 203 new lawyers, those who took the oath had passed the July Florida Bar Exam on their first attempt and pushed Miami Law’s pass rate to 82.5%, the second highest in the state. Senior United States District Judge Federico A. Moreno, JD ’78, of the United States District Court, Southern District of Florida, led the swearing-in ceremony. 
Jaret Davis, JD '99, recognized as one of Onyx Magazine's 2021 "Men of Honor." The Men of Honor honorees were chosen because they exemplify leadership, achievement, integrity, and vision in their efforts to transform their communities and professions, according to ONYX Magazine

Miami Law grads are successful in all areas of practice and can be found at the helm of some of the most prominent law firms, corporations, and foundations nationally and internationally. We are proud to celebrate and showcase the outstanding professional accomplishments of some of our many extraordinary graduates.
The University of Miami School of Law is proud to announce that the Miami Law tried-and-true alumni base has reached a milestone and passed 25,000 (25,812 graduated alumni as of July 2021), with graduates living and working in all 50 states and in 85 countries around the globe.
Joy Purcell, JD’ 08, senior attorney at the U.S. Department of Education in the Office of Civil Rights, jumped at the opportunity to assist unaccompanied minors in reunifying with their families in the United States.
Xavier Cortada, JD '91, created a series of paintings depicting major Supreme Court cases.


New ABA book by Miami Law alumna, Haley Moss, JD '18, lays groundwork for a more inclusive and understanding legal profession.

Gita Howard, JD '21, was awarded a prestigious Human Rights Program Fellowship with a placement at Human Rights First. 
Catch up with other Alumni News on the web and on Facebook.
Do you have news you'd like to share? We're all ears! Send a note to or submit it here!




1965Dean Frederick D. Lewis became dean. Lewis, an expert in automobile and insurance law, came to the University of Miami after serving as professor and dean at the University of Missouri at Kansas City. During his tenure, Dean Lewis continued to build up the law school’s scholarship program, announcing the Harvey T. Reid merit-based scholarships in 1970. While serving as dean, he was also appointed to serve as the chairman of the nominating committee for the Section on Legal Education and Admission to the Bar of the American Bar Association. In 1972, Dean Lewis stepped down as dean and joined the law school faculty.  He continued teaching at UM until his death in 1979.

1967 – The Heckerling Institute on Estate Planning was founded by Professor Philip E. Heckerling, who was a member of the School of Law’s faculty from 1963-1983. The Institute was founded with the purpose of bringing together estate planning experts to refine their skills. The Heckerling Institute led to the founding of the highly selective Heckerling Graduate Program in Estate Planning.
1969 – The University of Miami Inter-American Law Review (originally the Lawyer of the Americas) was founded. More than 50 years later, the Inter-American Law Review continues to publish scholarly commentary on the most pressing legal issues affecting the Americas. John Errol Lee, JD '69, was the first black alumnus of the University of Miami School of Law. 

1972 – The Law School welcomed its first Black faculty member, Professor Robert H. Waters. Professor Waters served on the Law School’s faculty for nearly 30 years and was a beloved colleague, professor, and mentor to many at Miami Law. During his tenure at the Law School, he founded the James Weldon Johnson Summer Institute to support minority law students. Today, Miami Law’s Black Law Students Association (BLSA) Robert H. Waters Chapter is named in his honor.

1974 – Soia Mentschikoff became dean. A Russian-American legal scholar and lauded professor, she served as the first female dean of the University of Miami School of Law. Before her tenure at Miami Law, Dean Mentschikoff broke legal ground nationwide, becoming the first woman in history to teach at both the University of Chicago Law School and Harvard Law School. Among her many accomplishments, Dean Mentschikoff was also the first woman elected president of the Association of American Law Schools (AALS), the first woman mentioned as a possible nominee for the United States Supreme Court, represented the United States at the Hague in an effort to build support for a uniform law governing international sales and arbitration, and served as one of the primary drafters of the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC). As Miami Law’s dean, she introduced an intensive tutorial program intended to teach first-year law students research and writing skills, a first-year course called Elements centering on the jurisprudence of the legal system, enacted upper-level curricular reform, built a new wing of the Law Library and a new classroom building, increased and improved the Law Library’s collection and revised the law school’s admissions standards. She was succeeded in 1982 by Dean Claude R. Sowel.

1974 – Professor Henry Manne founded the Law and Economics Center at the University of Miami School of Law. The Law and Economics Center institutionalized the study of law and economics into the study and practice of law for a wide variety of students and practitioners, now including hundreds of federal judges. The Center now continues at George Mason University School of Law, where it is an integrated part of the law school and continues to offer many of the same programs it offered in its infancy.


Enjoy the memories shared in these videos by Miami Law Alumni who attended during these years:

Joan Berk, JD '69
Gerald Hayes, JD '78
Thomas R. Spencer, Jr., JD ’69 
Joe Weinberger, JD ’79
It’s going to be an exciting year together!  We have a wonderful interim Dean, Nell Jessup Newton, and an amazing student body. As we begin the 2021-22 year, we look forward to celebrating them and you. Even through a pandemic and this new virtual world we are all navigating. UM Law and our Deans Circle members have continued to make an impact in our community and plan to continue to do so. Your continued support and ongoing involvement have helped our school succeed in staying a top academic program with a wonderful team.  I would like to share some of the Fall 2021 entering class demographics.
  • 57% women
  • From 33 states, District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and 10 countries. 
  • 41% are non-Florida residents 
  • 133 undergraduate institutions represented and 89 majors
  • 46% minority representation
  • 61% speak one or more foreign languages
  • 70% are the first person in their family to attend law school
  • Age range 20-42, average age: 23
  • 63% received merit-based scholarships
To celebrate this and you, we hope you will join us at upcoming events, in particular the Alumni Weekend & Homecoming festivities. We also hope we can count on your continued support of our school and students through sponsorships and employment opportunities, spreading the word and working with our great school and students and engaging other members of our community in the Dean Circle. 

On behalf of my Vice Chair, Jeff Fine, JD '67, President of the Alma Jennings Foundation, and the Deans Circle committee members, we hope you will join us and continue to help us make a difference for our alma matter and community. Support your alma matter today! 


Go ’Canes!
Stephanie L. Carman, JD '01

Shareholder, GrayRobinson


Greg Levy Featured in The Daily Business Review: What the Pandemic Taught UM's Associate Dean Greg Levy About the Next generation of Lawyers.
Biden Administration Appoints Miami Law’s Caroline Bettinger-López to Gender Policy Council.
Miami Law Adds Value to Student Support Teams and Legal Writing Faculty.
Dean Nell Jessup Newton, announces Charlton Copeland as Vice Dean of Intellectual Life.


Hispanic Law Students Association host U.S. District Court Judge Eduardo C. Robreno for a meet and greet.


Miami Law named Jaime Rich Vining, JD '06, and Daniel Barsky, JD '06, co-directors of the Startup Clinic, formerly known as the “Startup Practicum.”
Support Our Clinics


October 28, 2021: Young Alumni Committee | Miami Networking Event

October 29, 2021: Freaky Friday: From Legal Career To Writing Without Fear
Featuring UM alumni Liani Kotcher, JD ’04 & Meg Nocero, MA '94

Alumni Weekend & Homecoming - Registration Now Open!

  • Thursday, November 4: Class Reunions: 1981, 2000, 2001, 2011 &  Celebration of former Assistant Dean for Professional Development, William P. VanderWyden II - REGISTER NOW!
  • Friday, November 5: Class of 1991 Reunion - REGISTER NOW!
  • Saturday, November 6: Law Alumni Association & Student Bar Association:  72nd Annual “Morning Spirits” & Homecoming Breakfast - REGISTER NOW!
  • Saturday, November 6: Buy a ticket to attend the UM vs. Georgia Tech football game, a special block of tickets have been reserved for our Miami Law alumni - BUY YOUR TICKET!
Promote your firm or business at our events. Sponsorship opportunities available!

Contact the office of Law Development and Alumni Relations for details and or (305) 284-3470.


We Robot 2021 Conference
The Alan S. Becker & Gary A. Poliakoff Preeimnent Leaders in Law Speaker Series: Featuring Keith Ellison, Minnesota Attorney General

NEWS FROM OTHER AREAS OF MIAMI LAW - Communications that may interest you:

Miami Law Explainer
Robert Traurig-Greenberg Traurig LL.M. in Real Property Development - September 2021 E-Newsletter
Career Development Office


Legendary global lawyer and LawWithoutWalls co-founder Peter Lederer passed away in New Milford, Connecticut Sunday, August 8, 2021.
Ronald B. Goerler, JD ’51 
James “Booty” Nance, JD '56
Frederick Allan Schwarb, JD '61
Chesterfield Smith Jr., JD '88
In these unique economic times, contributions from alumni are more important than ever. We invite you to support the University of Miami School of Law through planned giving. Planned giving can help you balance your charitable interests with your personal financial goals while also helping you realize significant tax and other benefits for you, your heirs, and your estate. Through planned giving, you can make a gift you might have otherwise thought impossible.

To learn how easy it is to leave a legacy, please contact:  
The Law Alumni and Development Office at the School of Law (305) 284-6470  or

For more information about Estate/Planned Giving,
please visit University of Miami Estate & Gift Planning website.
Make a Gift
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