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Sam Ginocchio ’15 Shares Thoughts for Small Business Owners


Sam Ginocchio ’15 is a former owner of A Tavola Bar and Trattoria, a Tri-state hotspot located in the revitalized downtown Over-The-Rhine community. He shares his thoughts on why law school is important for small business owners.

As a small business owner you can have a great idea, entrepreneurial drive and a willingness to work long hours, but to succeed you need to couple those with an understanding that you're operating in a larger world. It’s a world where there are many competing interests - from other businesses, suppliers, government entities and the larger community as a whole. Besides the traditional legal fields of property, contracts, and commercial transactions, law school trains you to ask questions that you might not have realized were a part of your business vision, and develops collaborative problem solving skills which hopefully enhance whatever practical abilities and gut instinct you bring to your business. My goals haven't changed as much as they've been refined; I still believe small businesses are key for our city's vibrancy and an important engine for Cincinnati's growth.

George Jonson '83 received the 2014 Eugene R. Weir Award for Ethics and Professionalism


George Jonson, a managing partner at the law office of Montgomery, Rennie & Jonson, received the 2014 Eugene R. Weir Award for Ethics and Professionalism from the Ohio State Bar Association.

The Weir Award recognizes exceptional professional responsibility among Ohio lawyers and was presented to Jonson during the Ohio State Bar Association (OSBA) Annual Convention in Columbus.

The OSBA Board of Governors established the Weir Award in 1998 to honor the memory of Eugene R. Weir, a former member of the board. Weir championed improvements in lawyer regulation and strongly advocated for the promotion of professionalism and legal ethics. Each year this award is given to one lawyer who has worked to promote and uphold legal professionalism and ethics.

Jonson's practice focuses on the defense of legal malpractice claims, as well as commercial litigation. He provides ethics advice to attorneys and judges and represents attorneys, judges and other professionals in disciplinary actions. He has represented clients in state and federal court for more than 30 years.

Jonson earned his undergraduate degree from Miami University at Oxford in 1979 and his law degree from the University of Cincinnati College of Law in 1983. He is admitted to practice in Ohio and Kentucky state courts as well as a number of federal trial and appellate courts.

George Jonson '83 received the 2014 Eugene R. Weir Award for Ethics and Professionalism


George Jonson, a managing partner at the law office of Montgomery, Rennie & Jonson, received the 2014 Eugene R. Weir Award for Ethics and Professionalism from the Ohio State Bar Association.

The Weir Award recognizes exceptional professional responsibility among Ohio lawyers and was presented to Jonson during the Ohio State Bar Association (OSBA) Annual Convention in Columbus.

The OSBA Board of Governors established the Weir Award in 1998 to honor the memory of Eugene R. Weir, a former member of the board. Weir championed improvements in lawyer regulation and strongly advocated for the promotion of professionalism and legal ethics. Each year this award is given to one lawyer who has worked to promote and uphold legal professionalism and ethics.

Jonson's practice focuses on the defense of legal malpractice claims, as well as commercial litigation. He provides ethics advice to attorneys and judges and represents attorneys, judges and other professionals in disciplinary actions. He has represented clients in state and federal court for more than 30 years.

Jonson earned his undergraduate degree from Miami University at Oxford in 1979 and his law degree from the University of Cincinnati College of Law in 1983. He is admitted to practice in Ohio and Kentucky state courts as well as a number of federal trial and appellate courts.

OIP Client Dewey Jones Exonerated; 17th Person Freed through Efforts of OIP


Congratulations to the OIP team and client Dewey Jones who was exonerated Thursday, January 30, 2014. Summit County (OH) Judge Mary Margaret Rowland dismissed aggravated murder, aggravated kidnapping, and aggravated robbery charges against Jones, who spent 20 years in prison. Jones was convicted in 1993 murder of 71-year-old Neil Rankin. The OIP’s investigation uncovered police misconduct, and DNA testing eventually came back and proved his innocence.

Jones is the 17th  person freed by OIP efforts.  Together, OIP clients have spent nearly 300 years in prison for crimes they did not commit.

Students who worked on this case over the years include: Shabby Allen, Amanda Bleiler, Julie Kathman, Eric Kmetz, Bryant Strayer, Scott Brenner and Sarvani Prasad, Eric Gooding and Brian Howe, Chris Brown and Matt Katz, Amanda Rieger and Nicole Billec, Ryan McGraw, and Stacey Skuza.

For more information about the case:

Nora Burke Wagner Named Director of LLM Program


Nora Burke Wagner has been named director of the law school’s LLM Program. A 2000 graduate of the College, she clerked for Judge Nathaniel R. Jones of the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit and spent seven years working in-house at a large non-profit social service agency as Director of Government Advocacy and Legal Affairs before returning to the College of Law community.

While at the College Wagner has assisted with many important projects including preparing for the accreditation visit, designing bar passage reporting strategies, and assisting with putting registration advising materials on the law school website.  She was instrumental in the design, approval, and implementation of current LLM program and has been focusing her time recently on recruiting and admitting the new class of LLM students.  In her new position, she will continue her work on admissions, but will also take on some of the advising and teaching responsibilities of the LL.M. program. 

KMK Law Attorney Sophia R. Jannace '13 Admitted to Practice Law in Kentucky


Cincinnati, OH — Sophia R. Jannace, an attorney at Keating Muething & Klekamp PLL (KMK Law®), was recently admitted to practice law in the Commonwealth of Kentucky.  She had previously been admitted to practice law in Ohio.

Jannace joined KMK Law in September 2013 where she practices in the firm’s litigation group with a focus on commercial disputes.  Jannace earned her J.D. from the University of Cincinnati College of Law in 2013, Order of the Coif.  While in law school, she served as a judicial extern in the chambers of the Honorable David L. Bunning, District Judge for the Eastern District of Kentucky. She also acted as a legal extern at General Cable Corporation, a Fortune 500 company, where she drafted and reviewed commercial agreements and prepared due diligence materials for the issuance of high yield notes. Jannace worked during her summers in law school at a law firm in Lexington, Kentucky, where she drafted motions for summary judgment and administrative appeals. She was active in law school, serving as the Publications Editor for the University of Cincinnati Law Review, a member of the Cincinnati Trial Practice Team, volunteer with the Tenant Information Project, Class Representative on the Student Bar Association, and a member of the Student Court.

Prior to entering law school, Jannace served as an AmeriCorps VISTA member at the Homeless and Housing Coalition of Kentucky, a non-profit organization, where she spent a year as the Communications and Outreach Coordinator. The following year, she acted as the non-profit’s AmeriCorps Member Coordinator and served on the strategic planning committee for Lexington’s first Stand Down/Homeless Connect.  Jannace earned her B.A. from the University of Kentucky in 2008, magna cum laude.

About Keating Muething & Klekamp PLL

The law firm of Keating Muething & Klekamp PLL (KMK Law®), based in Cincinnati, Ohio, is a nationally-recognized law firm delivering sophisticated legal solutions to businesses of all sizes — from Fortune 100 corporations to start-up companies. Chambers USA: America’s Leading Business Lawyers® 2014 recognized KMK as a leading law firm in Ohio in Bankruptcy & Restructuring, Corporate and Mergers & Acquisitions, and General Commercial Litigation.  KMK earned three national rankings (Commercial Litigation, Corporate Law, and Venture Capital Law) and 36 metropolitan rankings in the 2014 “Best Law Firms” report by U.S. News and Best Lawyers.  Founded in 1954, KMK has approximately 110 lawyers and a support staff of 150 employees. Additional information is available at www.kmklaw.com. 

Michael J. Moeddel '02 named a winner of The 2014 M&A Advisor 40 Under 40 Recognition Awards


Cincinnati, OH — Keating Muething & Klekamp PLL (KMK Law) partner Michael J. Moeddel has been named a winner of The 2014 M&A Advisor 40 Under 40 Recognition Awards in the Legal Advisor category.  The awards program recognizes leading professionals working in the areas of mergers and acquisitions, turnaround, and financing who have reached a significant level of success in the industry while still under the age of 40. Winners are chosen for their accom
plishments and expertise from a pool of international nominees by an independent judging panel of distinguished business leaders.

Michael J. Moeddel head shotMichael J. Moeddel is a partner with KMK Law’s Business Representation & Transactions Group.  He represents public and private companies in a general counsel capacity on a broad range of corporate legal matters, with a particular emphasis on mergers, acquisitions, joint ventures, capital market transactions and other complex business transactions.  In the negotiation of acquisitions, Moeddel represents clients in all aspects of the transactions, including structuring the transactions, negotiating financing terms and documentation, to transitioning the business into a company’s existing structure.  

Moeddel also regularly represents investors in structuring and negotiating private placements of securities, including venture capital and private equity transactions.  He has represented angel investors, venture capital firms, private equity investors, and mezzanine lenders in structuring investments in start-up enterprises and existing businesses.  Moeddel also has worked with investee companies and entrepreneurs in negotiating terms of investment and exit transactions, corporate governance, and operational matters.   His experience includes the representation of public companies regarding a wide variety of securities issues particular to public companies, including corporate governance matters and compliance with the Sarbanes-Oxley Act.

Moeddel currently serves as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Cincinnati College of Law, on the Grants Committee of the Cincinnati Bar Foundation, as a Board Member of the Southwest Ohio Council on Child Abuse, and a member of the Ohio Bar Association's Corporate Law Committee.  He recently completed a seven year commitment as a Director (last two years as Chairman) of the Greater Cincinnati Sports Corporation, whose events annually generate 100,000 visitors to the region.  He also served as a member of the Board of Directors of the Cincinnati USA Convention & Visitor's Bureau.  In 2006, Mike was appointed by Mayor Mallory to the Cincinnati Recreation Commission where he served for three years and was responsible for overseeing Cincinnati’s 27 recreation centers, 41 aquatic facilities, and 2,500+ acres of outdoor athletic facilities.  At KMK Law, Moeddel has served important roles in many firm committees and efforts, including the firm's Diversity Task Force, Hiring Committee, and Employee Benefits Committee.  Moeddel has been named to The Best Lawyers in America® and to Ohio Super Lawyers Rising Stars.

The 2014 M&A Advisor 40 Under 40 awards will be presented at a gala ceremony on June 24, 2014, in New York City in conjunction with the 2014 Emerging Leaders’ Summit.  This is the second consecutive year that a KMK Law partner has been named a winner in The M&A Advisors 40 Under 40 Recognition Awards.

About Keating Muething & Klekamp PLL

The law firm of Keating Muething & Klekamp PLL (KMK Law®), based in Cincinnati, Ohio, is a nationally-recognized law firm delivering sophisticated legal solutions to businesses of all sizes — from Fortune 100 corporations to start-up companies. Chambers USA: America’s Leading Business Lawyers® 2014 recognized KMK as a leading law firm in Ohio in Corporate and Mergers & Acquisitions, Bankruptcy & Restructuring, and General Commercial Litigation.  KMK earned three national rankings (Corporate Law, Commercial Litigation, and Venture Capital Law) and 36 metropolitan rankings in the 2014 “Best Law Firms” report by U.S. News and Best Lawyers.  Founded in 1954, KMK has approximately 110 lawyers and a support staff of 150 employees. Additional information is available at www.kmklaw.com. 

Law Student Places 2nd in Cincinnati’s Flying Pig Marathon


Donnie Warner, a 2014 College of Law graduate, placed second in the 15th Annual Marathon, held May 4, 2014. He says his next marathon will involve studying for the Ohio Bar.   

Law student Donnie Warner ’14 has a lot to celebrate this month. He’s completed three years of law school. He’s scheduled to graduate from the College on May 17th. And, oh yes, he just finished 2nd place in the 15th Annual Flying Pig Marathon, held Sunday, May 4, 2014 in Cincinnati. He finished the grueling race with a time of 2:28:39, besting third place winner Kota Reichart by 18 seconds; he was 1 minute and 18 seconds behind three-time winner Sergio Reyes.

Warner’s running career started when he was 8 or 9 years old, he said. He went on to run for his high school team in Michigan. Next, he ran for DePaul University, earning a scholarship for cross country and track along the way.  He ran his first Flying Pig marathon in 2010, placing fourth and running about eight minutes slower than he did this year. “It was a disappointing result for me,” Warner said. “The silver lining was that I gained experience.  This year that experience paid off with a smarter [running] strategy!” During law school he continued to race in marathons, placing seventh in the Columbus Marathon in 2012 and sixth in the Indianapolis Monumental Marathon in 2013.

The Reason He Runs

With over 20 years under his belt, Warner has many reasons for why he runs. What he likes most, however, is the opportunity to meet interesting people. “Through running I've had the opportunity to become friends with runners from around the world, including Ethiopia, Kenya, Ireland, England, Morocco, and South Africa. When I lived on the Navajo Nation, I learned that my student's uncle was a famous runner; before long I was visiting his house and learning about his career. I am fascinated by how running brings people together.” 

His wife is also a runner and the two enjoy running together to catch up on the day’s or week’s events.

Why This Year’s Race was so Important

The 2014 Flying Pig had special significant for Warner. This year he ran in support of a local organization – Elementz Hip-Hop Youth Center in Over-The-Rhine.  Elementz teaches and encourages art that comes out of urban life and experience.  Thus, through rap, spoken word, stepping, urban photography, music production and video production, youth are able to express themselves and communicate their message of respect, hope, and achieving success. “I think that Elementz does very important work in our community, so I was happy to find a way to help out.” He has raised $1300 to date. 

Warner isn’t sure when or where his next race will be. He’ll be a little occupied for the next few months preparing for the Ohio Bar Exam.  “I guess studying for the bar is kind of a marathon! I am going to start with that (the Bar Exam) and then see what (race) looks interesting. Someday, though, I’d really like to run an international marathon.” 

As for after the bar, Warner says he has enjoyed his experiences working in criminal defense and employment law. He hoping to find a career in one of those areas, or perhaps something else. He’s open to possibilities!

 

2014 Goldman Prize for Excellence in Teaching Awarded to Professors Bettman, Chang, and Lenhart


The Goldman Prize for Excellence in Teaching is a high honor for faculty members, a point of great pride for those fortunate enough to receive it, and an important expression of our commitment to the best in teaching.

Congratulations to the three recipients of this year's prize  – Professors Marianna Brown Bettman, Felix Chang, and Elizabeth (Betsy) Lenhart.

 

Marianna Brown Bettman, Professor of Law

Everyone knows that Professor Bettman’s first year Torts class was not the class for which one wanted to be unprepared, ever. In fact, second and third year students stressed one should avoid that at all costs. With that in mind, most incoming 1Ls expected this professor to be akin to a fire-breathing dragon. Nothing could have been further from the truth. Standing at the front of the classroom – well it could not possibly be the woman who had intimidated at least two generations of law students!

It did not take long for the class to catch on; the reasons for her reputation seemed quite clear.  Her years as an appellate judge carried over into her career as an educator.  Come prepared, counselor, or consequences would ensue.  She was tough and set incredibly high expectations, but more importantly, she struck such a chord with students that they wanted to meet those expectations.  What everyone learned, as had the classes before, was that she set the bar high but was also dedicated to making sure all could all reach it.  She is always prepared to answer questions or to explain a concept in a different way.

Teaching 1Ls is not necessarily the most coveted job, but it is one that Professor Bettman carries off with grace and aplomb. Everyone fortunate enough to take her class departs the College of Law well-versed in the subject of torts.  However, her impact goes far beyond that. The challenge she set served a more important purpose for the first year class: it served to teach them beyond all doubt that law school is a journey they are ready to face.

The College of Law is honored to have a woman who is so dedicated and invested in her students’ futures as a member of the faculty.

Link to Profile Page of Professor Marianna Brown Bettman

 

Felix Chang, Assistant Professor of Law and Director, Institute for the Global Practice of Law

                    “Fundamentals, fundamentals, fundamentals. 

                  You’ve got to get the fundamentals down because

                     otherwise, the fancy stuff isn’t going to work.”

                                             – Randy Pausch, “The Last Lecture”

The fundamentals of law (critical thinking, analytical reasoning, captivating arguing, and effective debunking) are the most basic – but important – tools with which law schools can equip students. Successful professors are able to instill these qualities in their students, ensuring they are transferable across the curriculum and in to practice. Professor Felix Chang is precisely such a professor.

Professor Chang has distinguished himself in the classroom by engaging students in discussion and challenging their critical analysis on a variety of topics ranging from torts, corporations, agency, partnerships, international business transactions, as well as wills, trusts, and future interests. Any student that has had or interacted with Professor Chang would attest to the command he possesses over the subjects that he teaches.  His ability to break down complex legal issues into understandable, workable, and manageable problems is difficult to match.  Professor Chang’s understanding and command of his subject matter is crystal clear in the real-life problems that he poses to students and the application of his teaching methods to extract reasonable, applicable, and material responses from them.  He takes his time to allow students to work through issues, and provides insight, feedback, and advice on problem-solving methods during the process.  As one student accurately reflected, “Professor Chang explains concepts well, has an interest in making sure the students understand the material, and his insight about how laws play out in real-life settings is compelling.”

Professor Chang also brings a light-hearted nature to his courses.  His jokes, wry humor, and quotable movie moments make him more approachable to students.  His attitude toward students directly reflects his desire to see them succeed.

In addition to Professor Chang’s exceptional work in the classroom and his extensive scholarship on financial reform, antitrust, and derivatives, he is the director of the Institute for the Global Practice of Law (IGPL), which seeks to increase the understanding of international law and business transactions, as well as facilitate relationships among leaders in the global legal and business communities.  Such a program allows international individuals to connect with U.S. lawyers and the Cincinnati community. It also offers students (particularly LL.M students) and attorneys an opportunity to build professional ties in this area of law.  IGPL’s innovative initiatives, headed by Professor Chang, work to create ties in the business law community across the world.

Professor Chang’s dedication to his work in and out of the classroom, his focus on instilling the fundamentals of good lawyering to his students, as well as his passionate investment into the lives of his students’ futures serves as a demonstration to his excellence in teaching.  The College of Law is honored to have such a dedicated and hard-working professor.  It is a pleasure to honor Professor Chang with the 2014 Goldman Prize for Excellence in Teaching.

Link to Profile Page of Professor Felix Chang

 

 

Elizabeth (Betsy) Lenhart, Associate Professor of Law

Professor Betsy Lenhart is an engaging professor who truly wants to see her students succeed. She is not only an exemplary professor in the classroom, but also a great mentor, advisor, and confidant outside the classroom. While talking about her, one student shared, “I want her to win all of the awards.” – a sentiment with which many students would agree.

She often combines legal theories with real world applications, striving not only to teach the required material, but to guarantee that her students will become successful attorneys. For example, in her Legal Research and Writing class, instead of merely lecturing to her students about professionalism, Professor Lenhart used actual examples of an email chain between a prospective employer and a 3L seeking employment as an example of what not to do. She combines her skills as an educator with her impressive practical experience to shape and mold aspiring attorneys.

Teaching classes that are traditionally dominated by 1Ls, such as Legal Research and Writing, Advocacy, and Civil Procedure, Professor Lenhart has created a comfortable classroom environment that makes the daunting transition into law school a little less scary. Her students, past and present, frequently describe her as intelligent, engaging, and enjoyable. It is her approachable and warm demeanor that makes her students feel comfortable asking questions both during class and outside of it.

Not only is she an exceptional professor because of her in-classroom teaching abilities, but Professor Lenhart also spends a considerable amount of time making herself available to students outside of class. Her door is always open and she is always available and willing to talk about issues with classes or to give life advice in general. One student shared that when she felt overwhelmed by law school, she went to Professor Lenhart to talk things through. It is because of her calming presence that many students feel this way and often go to her with questions, even after they are no longer in her classes.

Professor Lenhart continually demonstrates her commitment to the education of her students, as well as their personal and professional development. It is because of these qualities that she represents excellence as a professor at the University of Cincinnati College of Law.

Link to Profile Page of Professor Elizabeth Lenhart

 

About the Goldman Prize for Teaching Excellence

The Goldman Prize has been awarded for over 30 years to recognize excellence in teaching. This award is unique because students nominate and choose the recipients—their professors. To make this decision, the committee also considers the professors’ research and public service as they contribute to superior performance in the classroom.

Pete Manso '82 named to BioFlorida Board of Directors


West Palm Beach, March 28, 2014 – Pete Manso ('82), a partner in Edwards Wildman’s Intellectual Property group and a veteran of technology-related law, has been named to the board of directors of BioFlorida, a statewide trade association for the bioscience industry.

As a board member, Manso will work to promote continued strong growth of the state’s bioscience, pharmaceutical and medical device industries via a series of networking events and educational programs.

Manso brings broad experience to the BioFlorida board.  He’s nationally recognized as a thought-leader in the pharmaceutical industry and a lifecycle management (“LCM”) and Hatch-Waxman/Orange Book specialist. Manso currently serves as intellectual property counsel to a number of leading domestic and foreign pharmaceutical companies. In addition, his patent strategy and litigation experience across life sciences technologies has earned accolades for savvy management of the intellectual property life cycle and creating significant value for new and aging pharmaceutical assets.

Manso has developed LCM strategies for Rx and OTC drugs that have earned in excess of $2 billion annually in gross sales in the U.S. alone.  During the course of his career, Manso has analyzed and/or created LCM strategies for well over 150 pharmaceutical assets in the oral, topical, rectal and injectable fields.

A former pharmacist, Manso received his undergraduate degree at Florida State University, his pharmaceutical degree at the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy, and his law degree at the University of Cincinnati College of Law.

About Edwards Wildman

Edwards Wildman is a full-service, international law firm with 600 lawyers in the US, Europe and Asia. We have market-leading capabilities in private equity and venture capital, complex litigation, insurance and reinsurance, IP and technology, and corporate and public finance. We have more than a century of experience as business-minded legal counsel. We share our clients'

entrepreneurial spirit and understand their industries, and we succeed because we add value to our clients’ business. We have offices in Boston, Chicago, Hartford, Hong Kong, Istanbul, London, Los Angeles, Morristown (NJ), Miami, New York, Orange County, Providence, Stamford, Tokyo, Washington, DC, and West Palm Beach.

About BioFlorida

BioFlorida is the statewide trade association for the bioscience industry, providing companies with the necessary resources to succeed, and a strong marketing presence both locally and internationally. The organization serves its membership by providing a network to exchange information and discuss issues related to the field. Regional and statewide industry-specific programs, educational forums, as well as a variety of networking opportunities address important and timely issues.