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Class of 2018 Honors: Three Receive Tulane 1834 Award

May 25, 2018

Tulane Law School honored dozens of third-year students who had excelled in scholarship, leadership, academics and service during the annual Graduation Awards ceremonies held at the John Giffen Weinmann Hall on the eve of 2018 commencement.

Among the top award recipients were Margaret McLaughlin, Allison Skopec and Claris Smith, who were recognized for their exemplary leadership, service and academic excellence in receiving one of Tulane’s most prized student honors, the Tulane 1834 Award.

The award, named for the year in which the university was founded, 1834, is presented annually to 34 graduates university-wide, who have distinguished themselves throughout their collegiate life.

 “We are so proud of the exceptional achievements of these three students,” said Law School Dean David Meyer, in presenting the awards. “We look forward to celebrating their future successes.”

McLaughlin graduated in the top 5 percent of her law class, achieving academic success while taking on numerous leadership roles. A former teacher, she served as a leader in the Public Interest Law Foundation (PILF), working to raise more than $60,000 for grants to support other students in their summer public interest jobs.  She also mentored public interest-minded or first-generation law students. McLaughlin was Articles Editor for the Tulane Law Review and was a student attorney in the Civil Rights and Federal Practice Clinic.

Skopec, as president of PILF, showed exemplary leadership drafting and ratifying a new constitution, focused on equal parts activism and fundraising for public service summer legal jobs. She helped raise more than $62,000 for law students’ summer public interest work.  Skopec gave more than 500 hours of pro bono work for clients such as those living on a superfund landfill site, animal welfare advocates, Lower Ninth Ward residents affected by the industrial canal construction, and environmentalists affected by the Bayou Bridge Pipeline project. Skopec also served as the Senior Online Editor of the Tulane Maritime Law Journal.

Smith was an active member of PILF and the Black Law Student Association (BLSA). Additionally, she served as one of a handful of students on the Dean’s Advisory Committee, where she was a fierce advocate for initiatives to increase diversity and awareness of mental health resources across campus. In the spring of her first year, she worked with several classmates to re-establish the Disability and Health Law Society (D&H Law) on campus, where she served as president until spring 2017.  She has served as the Student Bar Association’s first Diversity Chair, and as a student attorney in the Civil Rights and Federal Practice Clinic, and as a Dean Rufus Harris Fellow, through which she mentored to first-year law students. Smith also volunteered in the community feeding the homeless.

Other campus-wide awards included the Crest Award which was presented to Marisa Andrews, Manuel Guzman-Garrow and Annie Hundley for their work inside and outside the classroom. The Crest Award is given annually to students who demonstrate excellence in leadership, scholarship and community service as well as initiative and promise in campus leadership.

See photos of the 2018 Graduation Awards.


Other award winners:

 
•   Student Bar Association President Award:
    Marisa Andrews
•   Order of the Coif Inductees:
    Alice Barbara Billmire
    Clerc Higgins Cooper
    Grace Orena Demyan
    Madeline Roe Flores
    Amy Grace Fudenberg
    Christopher Ashton Hebert
    Annie Catherine Hundley
    Hillrie Richelle James
    Leslie Michelle LaCoste
    Margaret Whiteley McLaughlin
    Zachary Taylor Montgomery
    Colleen Patricia Krajci Murphy
    Catherine Nunez
    Samantha Alexis Oppenheim
    Alexandra Nicole Phillips
    Melissa Holliday Redmon
    Peter Lee Rogers Jr.
    Sarah Marie Smith-Clevenger
    Coleman Lord Torrans

•   Order of the Barristers:
    Stephanie Morgan Brown
    Deandra Nicole De Naopli
    Miriam Anna Gentile
    Marcella Dianne Lupski
    Emma Kirchberg Moppert
    Catherine Nunez
    Charles Ezekiel Joshua Phipps
    Marcus K. Pierre
    Anna Kathryn Potter
    Lauren Elizabeth Starnes

•   Moot Court Chief Justice:
     Marcella Dianne Lupski
•   The Joseph A. Ettinger Award:
    Margaret Whiteley McLaughlin – Civil  Track
    Andrew T. Noell – Criminal Track
•   The BarBri Award:
    Caroline Leigh Gabriel
    Kirby Nicole Kenny
    Drew Berry Lafontant
•   The Association for Women Attorneys Award:
    Jessica Anne Greenberg
•   The Clinical Legal Education Outstanding Clinical Student Award:
    Adam Duker Rosenberg
•   The Louisiana State Bar Association Law Student Pro Bono Award:
    Kirby Nicole Kenny
•   The Brian McSherry Community Service Award:
    Drew Berry Lafontant
•    The General Maurice Hirsch Award:
    Kerianne Amanda Strachan
•   The James A. Wysocki Trial Advocacy Awards:
    Fall 2017 – Emma Kirchberg Moppert
    Spring 2018 – Tanner C. Beal

•   Federal Bar Association Award:
    Peter Lee Rogers Jr.
•   The Louisiana State Bar Association Corporate and Business Law Section Award:
    Peter Lee Rogers Jr.
•    he Tulane Tax Institute Award in Taxation:
    Radina Todorova Angelova
•    The Haber Joseph McCarthy Environmental Law Award:
    Thomas Paul Gosselin
•   The Charles Kohlmeyer Jr. Award in Maritime Law:
    Chelsea Coleman Crews
•   The Edward A. Dodd, Jr. Award in Admiralty:
    Felipe Eduardo Gavilanes Méndez
•   LLM Academic Excellence Award:
    Antonia Kristina Oblinger
•   The George Dewey Nelson Memorial Award:
    Hillarie Richelle James
    Zachary Taylor Montgomery
•    The Civil Law Studies Award:
    Clerc Higgins Cooper
    Annie Catherine Hundley
•    The John Minor Wisdom Award:
    Coleman Lord Torrans

•   The Dean's Medal:
    Collin Steven Buisson
    Clerc Higgins Cooper
    Leslie Michelle LaCoste
    Margaret Whiteley McLaughlin
    Colleen Patricia Krajci Murphy
    Samantha Alexis Oppenheim
    Alexandra Nicole Phillips
    Peter Lee Rogers Jr.
    Coleman Lord Torrans

•   The Faculty Medal:
    Leslie Michelle LaCoste

                                    

 
   


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