Sperino Cited by Iowa Supreme Court and Quoted in Washington Post
July 2014 has been a great month for Professor Sandra Sperino. In addition to having her work cited several times by the Iowa Supreme Court in cases involving federal and state employment law and employment discrimination, she was quoted in a Washington Post article about punishments federal whistleblowers may receive on their jobs. And, she also was published in the Stanford Journal of Civil Rights and Civil Liberties.
Iowa Supreme Court Cites Sperino’s Work
The Iowa Supreme Court cited articles by Professor Sperino in two opinions issued this summer. The two cases are Goodpaster v. Schwan's Home Serv., Inc., 13-0010, 2014 WL 2900950 (Iowa June 27, 2014) and Pippen v. State, 12-0913, 2014 WL 3537028 (Iowa July 18, 2014).
In both cases, the Iowa Supreme Court decided whether it should interpret the Iowa Civil Rights Act to be consistent with federal law. In both cases, the Iowa Supreme Court used Sperino’s work to support its conclusion that Iowa state law should be interpreted independently from federal law.
Sperino’s articles discuss how fractured federal discrimination law has become over time. Under federal law, discrimination protections are found in three main statutes: Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (“ADEA”), and the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”). Prior to the 1990s, the federal courts tended to read these three statutes consistently. If a phrase was interpreted one way under Title VII, the courts would interpret the same or similar phrase in the ADEA to have the same meaning. However, in recent cases, the Supreme Court has interpreted these statutes differently.
Sperino’s work explains how many states have a single anti-discrimination statute. It is difficult for state law to continue to follow federal law because federal law now approaches some questions differently, depending on whether the underlying claim is one for age discrimination, sex discrimination, or disability discrimination. In many states, claims for age, sex, and disability discrimination would all be brought under the same state statute.
Her work also explains that Congressional amendments to Title VII and the ADA were largely in response to Supreme Court decisions interpreting these statutes narrowly. State laws may use different words than the federal statutes. Many state laws also do not have the same history of narrow court interpretation followed by subsequent amendment. It is now difficult to read many state laws in tandem with federal law. As the Iowa Supreme Court noted: “Congressional reaction to a specific case decided by the United States Supreme Court does not shed light on the meaning of state law when there has been no comparable narrow state court precedent to stimulate a legislative override.” Pippen v. State, 12-0913, 2014 WL 3537028, at *15 (Iowa July 18, 2014).
Here are links to the cited articles:
- Sandra F. Sperino, Revitalizing State Employment Discrimination Law, 20 Geo. Mason L. Rev. 545, 546–64 (2013), available at http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/results.cfm
- Sandra F. Sperino, Diminishing Deference: Learning Lessons from Recent Congressional Rejection of the Supreme Court's Interpretation of Discrimination Statutes, 33 Rutgers L. Rec. 40, 42–43 (2009), available at http://lawrecord.com/files/33_Rutgers_L_Rec_40.pdf.
Washington Post Article Quotes Sperino
Professor Sperino was also quoted in the August 4, 2014 Washington Post article “For whistleblowers, a bold move can be followed by one to department basement.” The article follows the case of former Phoenix Veterans Affairs Hospital employee Paula Pedene who alleges she was reassigned to a new position after complaining to higher-ups about mismanagement at the hospital. In the article Sperino talks about the challenges employees often face when attempting to bring this type of case to court.
- Here’s a link to the story: “For Whistleblowers, a bold move can be followed by one to department basement”.
Finally, her article Fakers and Floodgates, co-authored by Professor Suja Thomas, University of Illinois College of Law, appeared in print at 10 Stanford Journal of Civil Rights and Civil Liberties 223 (2014).
The Anatomy of Violence: The Biological Roots of Crime
The Glenn M. Weaver Institute of Law and Psychiatry presents
Adrian Raine, Departments of Criminology, Psychiatry and Psychology, University of Pennsylvania, and Visiting Fellow, University of Cambridge.
Date: October 1, 2014
Time: 4:00 - 6:00 p.m.
Location: College of Law - Room 114
CLE: 2 CLE credits (requested), approval is expected.
The very rapid developments taking place in the neuroscience of crime and violence are creating an uncomfortable tension between our concepts of responsibility and retribution on the one hand, and understanding and mercy on the other. This talk outlines implications of this body of knowledge not just for research, but also for our future conceptualization of moral responsibility, free will, and punishment. If the neural circuitry underlying morality is compromised in offenders, how moral is it of us to punish prisoners as much as we do? Can biological risk factors help better predict future violence? And how can we improve the brain to reduce violence?
Randall D. Larramore '97 to serve as the President of Paty, Rymer & Ulin, P.C.
Paty, Rymer & Ulin, P.C., announces the election of Randall D. Larramore to serve as the President of the corporation. The firm also announces that its name has been changed to Paty, Rymer, Ulin & Larramore, P.C. Mr. Larramore received his Bachelor’s degree from the University of Chattanooga in 1989, and received a Masters in Public Administration from the University in 1993. Thereafter, Mr. Larramore was awarded the Benwood Foundation’s prestigious Chapin-Thomas Scholarship to attend the University of Cincinnati College of Law. While at the College of Law, Mr. Larramore was a member of the Moot Court Board and an Edward Morill Constitutional Law Scholar. Mr. Larramore received a Masters in Business Administration from U.C.’s Carl H. Linder College of Business in 1995, and in 1997, received his law degree from the University of Cincinnati College of Law.
Mr. Larramore began practice at Paty, Rymer & Ulin, P.C. in 1997, and in 2004 was announced as a member of the firm. Mr. Larramore practices primarily in the area of employment and civil rights litigation, but also practices in the areas of domestic law, personal injury, and general business litigation. Mr. Larramore is admitted to practice before all Courts in Tennessee, all regional Federal courts, and the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals. Mr. Larramore has argued employment cases before the Tennessee Court of Appeals, the Tennessee Supreme Court, and the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati, Ohio.
Paty, Rymer & Ulin, P.C. is a small law firm which began operations under its recent name of Paty, Rymer & Ulin, P.C., in 1979. The Paty family, with which the firm is associated, has practiced together on Patten Parkway in Chattanooga, Tennessee as early as 1975, preceding the formation of the law firm as it is currently configured. Following the lead of senior partner, Selma Cash Paty; Paty, Rymer & Ulin has a specialty practice in domestic law, including all aspects of juvenile, divorce and custody litigation. Within the context of that firm specialty, each of the attorneys at Paty, Rymer, Ulin & Larramore, P.C., has a particular area of the law on which they concentrate, including: Railroad litigation, FELA litigation, personal injury, collections, and construction law.
Celebrating the Legacy of UC Law Graduate and Former Dean Samuel S. Wilson
The City of Cincinnati and the College of Law community lost a legend on June 25, 2014, when Dean Emeritus Samuel S. Wilson passed away at the age of 89.
A native Cincinnatian, Dean Wilson received his bachelor's degree from Princeton University in 1947. He returned to Cincinnati to work as a reporter for the Cincinnati Times-Star newspaper, and went on to serve as its Washington correspondent and associate editor of the editorial page. When the Times-Star was acquired by the Cincinnati Post in 1958, Dean Wilson enrolled in the University of Cincinnati College of Law and served as editor-in-chief of the Law Review. Graduating in 1961, he worked in private practice before returning to the law school as a member of the faculty in 1965.
Dean Wilson twice served as acting dean before serving a full term as dean (1974-1978). Among his accomplishments were the securing of the funding for the major renovation and expansion of the College’s building and the development of clinical programs that provided practical experience for students while assisting people in need in the Cincinnati community. After his deanship, he returned to teaching and studying law until his retirement in 1993.
Dean Wilson was very active in a number of Cincinnati civic organizations, including serving on the board of the Legal Aid Society of Cincinnati. He and his wife Anne have been long-time supporters of the College of Law and particularly dedicated to its Law Review and the Domestic Violence Clinic. In recognition of his accomplishments at the law school and in the community, Dean Wilson received the Distinguished Alumni Award in 1994.
For many alumni of the College of Law, Dean Wilson is remembered as the personification of the lawyer, the professor, the professional, the law school – and even the law itself. Many also affectionately remember him as “Judge Paul Trevor” on WCPO’s “Juvenile Court” – a television show that ran from 1975 to 1983 . While Dean Wilson had no prior acting experience, the program quickly established itself as the top-rated show in its time slot for nearly five years. Due to concerns over lawyer advertising, Dean Wilson’s name never appeared in the credits and most fans thought he was a real judge.
The memorial service will be held on Friday, July 18, 2014 at 11:00 a.m. For more information about the service, as well as memorials, please review the obituary.
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:
- UC Magazine: Ohio Innocence Project frees 17th person, Dewey Jones
- Wrongful Convictions blog: Murder Charged Dismissed after Man Spent 20 Years in Prison
- Columbus Dispatch: Akron Man Latest Ohio Inmate to be Freed by DNA Testing
- NewsNet5/Cleveland: Murder Charge Dismissed Against Dewey Jones
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.
OIP Celebrates 2nd Victory for the David Ayers Case
Current and former Ohio Innocence Project fellows, along with staff, celebrate an additional win in the case of David Ayers, wrongly convicted of murder in 2000. Sentenced to life in prison without parole for aggravated murder, aggravated robbery, and aggravated burglary, he was exonerated in 2011. Friday, March 8, Ayers was awarded $13.2 million by a federal jury, among the top 10 ever awarded for a wrongful conviction case.
Read the Cincinnati Enquirer story: Innocence Project Client Gets $13 Million
Talk: Environmental Context: Neighborhood Matters for Human Health and Disease
Kenneth Olden, PhD, Director of EPA’s National Center for Environmental Assessment
"Environmental Context: Neighborhood Matters for Human Health and Disease
Date: March 28, 2013
Time: 12:15 - 1:15 p.m.
Location: Room 118
About Dr. Ken Olden
Dr. Ken Olden joined the National Center for Environmental Assessment in July 2012 with a strong legacy of promoting scientific excellence in environmental health. From 1991-2005, Olden served as the Director of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) and the National Toxicology Program (NTP) in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. He made history in this role as the first African American to direct one of the National Institutes of Health. In 2005, he returned to his research position as chief of The Metastasis Group in the Laboratory of Molecular Carcinogenesis at the NIEHS, and for academic year 2006-2007, held the position of Yerby Visiting Professor at the Harvard School of Public Health. Most recently, Ken served as the Founding Dean of the School of Public Health at the Hunter College, City University of New York.
He has published extensively in peer-reviewed literature, chaired or co-chaired numerous national and international meetings, and has been an invited speaker, often a keynote, at more than 200 symposia. Dr. Olden has won a long list of honors and awards including the Presidential Distinguished Executive Rank Award, the Presidential Meritorious Executive Rank Award for sustained extraordinary accomplishments, the Toxicology Forum’s Distinguished Fellow Award, the HHS Secretary’s Distinguished Service Award, the American College of Toxicology’s First Distinguished Service Award, and the National Minority Health Leadership Award. Alone among institute directors, he was awarded three of the most prestigious awards in public health—the Calver Award (2002), the Sedgwick Medal (2004), and the Julius B. Richmond Award (2005). Most recently, he received the Cato T. Laurencin MD, PhD Lifetime Research Award from the National Medical Association Institute, the largest and oldest national organization representing African American physicians and their patients in the United States.
He was elected to membership in the Institute of Medicine at the National Academy of Sciences in 1994 and appointed member of the Visiting Committee for the Harvard University Board of Overseers from 2007-2010.
Dr. Olden holds the following degrees:
- Temple University, Philadelphia, P.H.D., Cell Biology and Biochemistry, 1970.
- University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, M.S., Genetics.
- Knoxville College, B.S., Biology.
Additionally, Ken has numerous honorary degrees from several prestigious colleges and universities.