Today’s lawyers often practice more than just law. They are business consultants. Problem solvers.  Financial strategists.  That’s why Villanova University School of Law is pushing the boundaries of traditional legal instruction and infusing vital business coursework and experiential learning opportunities into every student’s education. Whether students pursue corporate, criminal or public interest practice, Villanova prepares graduates to become the kind of lawyer the market demands.

“Firms and institutions want attorneys who can hit the ground running,” says John Y. Gotanda, the Arthur J. Kania Dean of Villanova University School of Law. “Our efforts are designed to provide students with the skills they need to practice on day one and throughout their careers.”

The Center for Law, Entrepreneurship and Innovation is the embodiment of Villanova’s new curricular innovations. Designed to foster collaboration, the Center is a hub for cross-disciplinary programming, groundbreaking coursework and real-world learning opportunities.

Two new courses that teach financial literacy, valuation principles and legal project management were designed with the help of industry experts and leading law firms. Students put these concepts into practice as they work through real-life legal scenarios under the supervision of some of the best practicing attorneys in our region.

In the new Clinic for Law and Entrepreneurship, students gain valuable hands-on learning experience in entrepreneurial law. Under the supervision of faculty, students act as primary counselor to emerging businesses – advising on business-related, transactional matters such as corporate formation, intellectual property, contracts and more.

This is where students will engage with experts on front-page issues.

This is where faculty scholars will train students to be practice ready in today’s fast-paced, interconnected world.

This is where law meets business.

Click Here To Learn More

Ten Remarkable General Counsels Speak at NAWL’s 10th General Counsel Institute

Today’s world-class organizations require in-house counsel not only to be expert lawyers, but also to be multi-faceted, strategic, and motivational leaders who engage themselves, their law departments, and their organizations to achieve business objections.  On November 6th and 7th, 2014, the National Association of Women Lawyers® (“NAWL”) will present its Tenth Annual General Counsel Institute® (“GCI 10”) – Strategic Leadership: Developing Legal Expertise and Skills to Enable and Empower Yourself and Others in the 21st Century — to over 200 senior in-house women counsel from companies across the countryIn honor of the tenth anniversary of GCI, NAWL will have ten remarkable General Counsels speak at its event:

  • Donna Costa, Executive Vice President, General Counsel and Chief Compliance Officer, Mitsubishi Chemical Holdings America;
  • Beth DeSimone, General Counsel, CommunityOne Bank, N.A.;
  • Vicki Donati, General Counsel, Crate & Barrel Holdings, Inc.;
  • Cynthia Gibson, Executive Vice President, Chief Legal Officer and Corporate Secretary, Scripps Networks Interactive, Inc.;
  • Leigh M. Harlan, Senior Vice President, Secretary and General Counsel, Tiffany & Co.;
  • Sandra Leung, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary, Bristol-Myers Squibb Company;
  • Jennifer Rochon, General Counsel, Girl Scouts of the United States of America;
  • Brad Smith, General Counsel and Executive Vice President, Microsoft Corporation;
  • Monica Weed, Executive Vice President, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary, Navigant Consulting, Inc.; and
  • Linda Willett, Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary, Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey.

Are you an in-house attorney?  Attend the event!  Are you outside counsel?  Consider sponsoring the event, reaching out to in-house lawyers you know, or sponsoring an in-house client by purchasing a ticket for her.  It’s a great point of contact with your client or prospective client and will spread the word about GCI 10!

The National Association of Women Lawyers is the leading national voluntary organization devoted to the interests of women lawyers and women’s rights.  NAWL was founded by a group of eighteen (18) women lawyers in New York City in 1899 and originally called The Women Lawyer’s Club (“Club”).  In 1915, women’s suffrage became the first major project undertaken by the Club.  Three-time Club President, Olive Scott Gabriel, argued for women’s voting rights across the country.  Four years later, Congress passed the 19th Amendment to the United States Constitution, prohibiting any United States citizen from being denied the right to vote on the basis of sex.  The Club’s membership mobilized to work for ratification by the states.  It also worked consistently on social legislation – including child labor laws, minimum wage, divorce and marriage laws, the right for a woman to keep her name after marriage, and the right for women to serve on juries. In 1923, due to increasing nationwide membership, the Club became the National Association of Women Lawyers.  That same year, it held its first national convention in Minneapolis with Chief Justice William Howard Taft.

In 1935, NAWL became one of the first national organizations to endorse the Equal Rights Amendment (“ERA”), first introduced to Congress in 1922.  The ERA became one of NAWL’s highest priorities for the next several decades.  In 1943, NAWL became an affiliated organization of the American Bar Association.  It led the creation of opportunities for women to serve in the military and had more than 150 of its members serving in the Woman’s Army Corp., Women Accepted for Voluntary Emergency Service, and the Marine Corp.’s Women’s Reserve.

In 1952, NAWL drafted the Uniform Divorce Bill, calling it “the greatest project NAWL has ever undertaken.”  In 1972, Congress passed the ERA and NAWL members embraced this victory by seeking ratification of the amendment by the states – a feat that would take until March 22, 1984 when Mississippi ratified it.  In 1985, NAWL began granting membership to male applicants.

Two decades later, the Immediate Past President of NAWL, Stephanie Scharf, now a partner at Scharf Banks Marmor LLC, founded the General Counsel Institute (“GCI”).  Scharf targeted the meeting to senior corporate counsel who had the goal of advancing to the role of chief legal officer.  She recognized the need for in-house attorneys to build top-tier professional and management skills in a supportive and interactive learning environment and to learn from experienced officers and directors about the points of pressure and success for general counsels.  Together with NAWL President Lorraine Koc, then General Counsel and EEO Officer at Deb Shops, Inc. (now Senior Counsel at SugarHouse Casino) and NAWL President Elect, Cathy Fleming, then a partner at Edwards and Angell, LLP (now a partner at Hodgson Russ, LLP), Scharf quickly formed a planning committee which consisted of themselves, as a well as Carol Basri, then adjunct professor at University of Pennsylvania School of Law (now adjunct professor at Fordham University School of Law), Caroline K. Cheng, Management Principal and Associate General Counsel at Deloitte LLP, Dorian Denburg, then Chief Rights-of-Way Counsel for BellSouth Corporation (now General Attorney for AT&T Services, Inc.), Michelle Speller-Thurman, then a partner at Jenner & Block (now Senior Counsel at Abbott Laboratories) and Betty-Lynn White (now an Adjunct and Area Chair for the University of Phoenix and Adjunct Professor at Albertus Magnus College).  The Committee arranged plenary and workshop sessions to foster frank discussions about what it takes to be promoted and provide the means to improve skills and knowledge in a collegial atmosphere.  They developed an innovative CLE program with opportunities to learn and network with other senior legal and business professionals and featured speakers Peter Harvey, then Attorney General of New Jersey, Catherine R. Kinney, then Co-Chief Operating Officer of the New York Stock Exchange, and Carol Robles-Román, Deputy Mayor, New York City.  GCI met with rave reviews!

In honor of its tenth anniversary, NAWL will celebrate GCI 10 by having ten outstanding General Counsels from Bristol-Myers Squibb Company, CommunityOne Bank, N.A., Crate & Barrel Holdings, Inc., Girl Scouts of the United States of America, Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey, Microsoft Corporation, Mitsubishi Chemical Holdings  America Inc., Navigant Consulting, Inc., Scripps Networks Interactive, Inc., and Tiffany & Co., who will share their insights on the unique challenges faced by in-house lawyers in today’s rapidly evolving business and legal environments, as well as the strategies, skills, and substantive knowledge necessary for in-house counsel to successfully lead their organizations and legal departments.  Keynote Speaker Brad Smith will discuss top leadership traits critical to leading, engaging, and motivating a global corporation.  Keynote Speaker Sandra Leung will address what it takes to thrive in today’s increasingly challenging business and regulatory environments.  Attendees will be able to network with these presenters and peers in a collegial environment, while increasing their effectiveness as women lawyers at the top tiers of their corporate law departments.

Additionally, GCI 10 will include CLE interactive workshops exploring best practices and actionable solutions on these leading edge topics:

  • Leading Through Expertise will address today’s hot topics relating to anti-bribery compliance, preventing data breaches, and what to know about global business in the cloud.
  • Leading and Balancing Growth and Efficiencies will address the globalization of commercial transactions, managing your law department more efficiently to drive business growth, and doing more with less and avoiding traps in business litigation.
  • Developing Highly Effective and Ethical Leaders will address executive presence, multinational approaches to addressing a multigenerational workforce, and staying ethical in a cost-effective world.

Through programs like GCI, NAWL provides the tools for women in the legal profession to advance, prosper, and enrich the profession.  Perhaps most importantly, NAWL, through its members and committees, functions as the Voice of Women in the Law™, providing a collective voice in the bar, courts, Congress, and the workplace to make women’s concerns heard.

For further information and to register for GCI 10, go to Programs & Events at

  • 02 Oct 2014 at 1:47 PM
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Practical Law provides legal know-how that gives lawyers a better starting point.

Our team of attorney editors creates and maintains thousands of up-to-date, practical resources that go beyond primary law and traditional legal research to give lawyers the resources needed to practice more efficiently, improve client service and add more value.

To learn more, take a free trial.

  • 30 Sep 2014 at 12:52 PM
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Introducing RBsourceFilings – A comprehensive SEC research and workflow tool that brings together everything you need in one search to ensure better legal practice: Laws & Regulations + SEC Guidance + SEC Filings + SEC Staff Comment Letters.

OmniVere’s delivery of end-to-end technology & data consulting to position the company as a true differentiator in the global legal technology and compliance space.

CHICAGO, IL, September 29, 2014 – OmniVere today announced the creation of the company’s technology & data consulting arm and the addition of several industry-renown experts, including the former co-chairs of Berkeley Research Group’s (BRG’s) Technology Services practice, Liam Ferguson, Rich Finkelman and Courtney Fletcher.

This new consulting practice will provide and expand existing OmniVere eDiscovery consulting services to corporations, law firms and government agencies with a special focus on compliance, information governance and eDiscovery.  This addition of this top talent now positions OmniVere as a true industry leader in the technology and data consulting space offering best-in-class end-to-end services.

Ferguson, Finkelman & Fletcher are nationally recognized experts and seasoned veterans in the areas of overall technology, electronic discovery, and structured data. At OmniVere, the team will be focused on all global consulting activities with respect to legal compliance, complex data analytics, business intelligence design and analysis, and electronic discovery service offerings.

Headquartered in Chicago, IL, with five other offices across the U.S., OmniVere is a leading provider of legal risk and compliance services, including eDiscovery, forensic & structured data consulting, litigation support, and staffing services. The company formed in May 2014, combining the professional experience of Superior Discovery in New York City and Washington DC, Lighthouse Document Solutions in Houston, TX, and the litigation support services division of Access Data in Houston, TX and Valhalla, NY.

“There aren’t many eDiscovery companies that also offer smart consultative solutions,” said Erik Post, CEO of OmniVere. “The addition of the Technology Consulting Practice creates a growth platform for OmniVere to be bullish about, while offering our existing and future customers one brand solution for all of their global data technology and litigation support needs.”

About OmniVere
OmniVere LLC has emerged as one of the largest integrated companies in the discovery management and consulting space. OmniVere is uniquely positioned to provide services that truly encompass all aspects of litigation support, including project management, review support, attorney review, document production, expert trial exhibits, document management and attorney and litigation support professional staffing, and data technology consulting. To learn more, please visit

The Trust Women Conference

The Trust Women conference is an influential gathering that brings together global corporations, lawyers and pioneers in the field of women’s rights. Unlike many other events, Trust Women delegates take action and forge tangible commitments to empower women to know and defend their rights.

This year, the Trust Women conference will take place 18-19 November in London. From women’s economic empowerment to slavery in the supply chain and child labour, this year’s agenda is strong and powerful. Speakers include Professor Muhammad Yunus, Nobel Laureate and founder of the Grameen Bank; Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Executive Director of UN Women; Mary Ellen Iskenderian, President and CEO of Women’s World Banking and many other influential leaders. Find out more about Trust Women here.

Our client is a premier international law firm based in Texas with an immediate need for a mid-level environmental associate in the firm’s Austin office. This firm boasts one of the best environmental practice groups in the state and is known for the quality of its client roster and the collegiality and skill of its attorneys. The winning candidate will have two-plus years of major firm environmental law experience (both regulatory and environmental litigation experience is preferred), Top academic credentials (Top 20 JD; Top of class – no exceptions), and excellent communication skills. Qualified out of market candidates looking to relocate to Texas for valid reasons will also be strongly considered. This is a partnership track position and compensation is at the top of the market.

Don’t hesitate to contact for more information. This is one of the best environmental law associate opportunities we have seen in some time and is a rare, major firm opportunity in Austin. The group would also consider adding this hire to its Houston office.

Professor Joel P. Trachtman has developed a unique, practical guide to help lawyers analyze, argue, and write effectively.

The Tools of Argument: How the Best Lawyers Think, Argue, and Win is a highly readable 200-page book, available for about $10 in paperback or e-book. Chapters focus on foundational principles in legal argument: procedure, interpretation of contracts and statutes, use of evidence, and more. The material covered is taught only implicitly in law school. Yet, when up-and-coming attorneys master these straightforward tools, they will think and argue like the best lawyers.

Buy now at

The Tools of Argument: How the Best Lawyers Think, Argue, and Win provides a comprehensive framework through which lawyers can readily learn and then apply the structure of legal discourse to debates, briefs, contracts, and other legal or business dealings. Even experienced practitioners will find this book a valuable refresher and checklist of the essential tools that increase the odds of winning disputes. Learn more about the benefits of The Tools of Argument for law students, lawyers and law firms, law professors, and executives at

Reviewers have noted the book to be “concise,” “insightful,” and “practical.” Readers gain a solid understanding of legal reasoning. Students who read this book as they start out in law school will have a conceptual framework that gives them a keen advantage in analyzing and synthesizing the vast amounts of new material presented across a variety of courses.

To illustrate legal concepts as used in argument, Professor Trachtman (often with attempts at humor) provides “Point-Counterpoints” throughout the book. Here are a few examples:

• The Principle of Effectiveness in Interpretation

Point: Each word must be ascribed utility and meaning, the use of different words must mean different things, and the use of the same words must mean the same thing.

Counterpoint: Agreements and laws are sometimes completed after little sleep and in a hurry, and draftsmen are not perfect. We should be cautious in setting a standard so high that it will frustrate the imperfectly expressed intent of the parties.

• Judicial Activism

Point: The judge has gone beyond the specific language of the statute, engaging in excessive and undemocratic judicial legislation. (Alternatively, the referee has gone beyond the specific rules of the game.)

Counterpoint: The judge or the referee is charged with making decisions. Where the law or the rules of the game are set in general terms, we can infer that the legislator or rule-maker implicitly delegated to the judge or referee discretion to fill in the details.

• Statistical Evidence

Point: I have statistical evidence that use of your product is strongly correlated with harm, and we have tested and ruled out all conceivable alternative causes.

Counterpoint: That is only circumstantial evidence and cannot be accepted as proof of responsibility.

Counter-counterpoint: Circumstantial evidence is indeed not necessarily conclusive, but strong correlation, combined with careful evaluation and rejection of alternative causes, is highly suggestive.

In the author’s words, “After practicing and teaching law for over 30 years, I have come to believe that acquiring the skills and mindset to think and argue like the best lawyers is not especially difficult. The problem has been that there are few places where one can learn about these techniques in a form that abstracts the essential nuggets of wisdom from their complex historical and legal contexts. Such a presentation is my goal for this book.”

Professor Joel P. Trachtman teaches International Law at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. Prior to entering academia, he practiced law at Shearman and Sterling in New York and Hong Kong. He is a graduate of Harvard Law School.

Read reviews and purchase at

For more information visit:

  • 12 Sep 2014 at 10:04 AM
  • Uncategorized

Watch Seamless Legal Accounting, a free webinar featuring Above the Law’s Brian Dalton and a legal accounting expert from Clio. To watch this webinar please click here.

For most attorneys, time spent managing the books is a necessary evil at best. Yet it is undeniably a crucial aspect of running a successful practice. With that in mind, we invite you to view or download a free webinar by Above the Law and our friends at Clio to learn how to better manage your finances.

Take this opportunity to learn what it takes to streamline your accounting and get the most out of your time. The webinar agenda:

● The basics of accounting for lawyers.

● How legal accounting differs from regular accounting.

● Report and reconciliation issues surrounding trust accounts.

● How to pick and integrate the best accounting tools for your practice.

● Steps to prepare your tax return for your firm’s income.

Do not miss this crucial chance to optimize your accounting practices. Save time and get back to billing!

Click here to view the webinar.

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