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Three alumni to join the Tulane Law Dean's Advisory Board

February 27, 2024 3:15 PM
Alina Hernandez ahernandez4@tulane.edu

Clockwise: Meredith Hathorn (L'83), Kimani Little (L'05) and Chris Ralston (L'99) will join the law school's Dean's Advisory Board.



Three new distinguished and dynamic alumni are joining the prestigious Tulane Law School Dean’s Advisory Board, providing vital counsel to the institution’s leadership as it navigates its strategic objectives.

Their careers span a broad range of legal areas including public policy, finance and bond markets and antitrust and trade regulation.  The three will work with the existing board and assist in providing advice and counsel to the Law School Dean.

They are:

  • Meredith Hathorn (L’83), a Managing Partner with Foley & Judell, L.L.P. in Baton Rouge who specializes in bond financing with public institutions, including the state of Louisiana;
  • Kimani Little (L’05), First Vice President and Government Relations Officer with the Federal Home Loan Bank of New York based in Washington, D.C., whose years spent in the halls of Congress as a staff attorney adds an important public service voice to the DAB;
  • Chris Ralston (L’99), a commercial litigation partner and practice coordinator in the New Orleans litigation practice at Phelps Dunbar, the immediate Past President of the Tulane University Alumni Association (TAA) and a tireless mentor and advocate for Tulane Law students, programs and its mission.

“Meredith, Kimani, and Chris truly represent the best of Tulane Law School,” said Interim Dean Sally Richardson.  “They are all passionate about Tulane Law, about their time here and about the future of the institution.  They have already provided me with ample advice and have served as sounding boards for different initiatives we have worked on this academic year.  I know they will continue to be excellent representatives and supporters of Tulane Law School.  We are proud to now count them as Board members.”

In addition to these new members, the advisory board is made up of several dozen other practitioners from a diverse cross-section of law firm leaders, judges, general counsel, the bar, and public service. Board members have played important roles in many innovations at the law school, including Tulane’s distinctive lawyering skills boot camp and an expansion of the school’s transactional skills curriculum, among others.


Meredith Hathorn

Hathorn has served as the lead bond attorney for the State of Louisiana on transportation-related and other specialized financing issues.  She serves as bond counsel to the Port of New Orleans, the Ernest N. Morial New Orleans Exhibition Hall Authority and on the specialized financings of numerous local hospitals, universities, charter schools and other public and non-profit institutions. She works with private companies including Cleco Power, Marathon Oil Corporation, Nucor,  NuStar Logistics, Air Products and Chemicals, Inc., Valero, Chevron and LOOP LLC on specialized financing transactions.

Her community involvement includes service as chair of the Government and Public Law Section of the Louisiana Bar Association and she was the editor of the Government and Public Law Newsletter. She served a four-year term on the Board of the National Association of Bond Lawyers and is currently serving in her fifth year as a member and second year as Chair of the board of directors of the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board.

At Tulane, Hathorn has been chair of several of her reunion committees and has served as a Moot Court judge over the years.  She is a cum laude graduate of the law school who was editor of the Tulane Maritime Lawyer and a Senior Fellow teaching legal research and writing. After graduation, she became an associate at Mudge Rose Guthrie & Alexander in New York, before joining Foley & Judell L.L.P. in New Orleans and Baton Rouge.

Her time at Tulane, she said, was instrumental in opening doors for her career, particularly with the help of other alumni who connected and guided her along the way.

“I am very grateful for the opportunity to serve on the Dean’s Advisory Board and to advance the mission, initiatives and objectives of the Law School,” Hathorn said. “I am excited to contribute to the Tulane Law School in a meaningful way  and to continue helping the Law School provide the most impactful education to all of its students." 

Kimani Little (L’05)

Little brings years of expertise in public policy having worked first as a legal intern in the White House Office of Counsel to the President; in the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice; as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in Washington, and as an attorney in both the House of Representative’s Judiciary Committee and the Committee on House Administration.

Little joined the Federal Home Loan Bank (FHLB) System 11 years ago after his service in the House. He first led public policy efforts as a Director of Government Relations for FHLB Atlanta and now as First Vice President and Government Relations Officer for FHLB New York.

Little’s affection for Tulane Law is palpable, and he calls his time at the law school “transformative.”

“I made my best friends in law school, and we are in daily contact, continuing to lean on one another for advice as we progress in our careers and family life,” he said. “Attending Tulane was one of the best decisions of my life, so the decision to give back to the law school that gave me so much is an easy one.”

Little has not only served as an active volunteer in his law reunion committees, the Black Law Alumni Reunion and as a D.C.-based alumni leader, he regularly organizes informal alumni gatherings and serves as a mentor, counselor and contact for Tulane Law students interested in public policy or practicing in Washington. He was one of several alumni who made matching challenges to the Give Green Day of Giving in recent years.

Little said he would love to see Tulane Law increase its ranks of diverse students by making law school more affordable and that he hopes to work with Congressional representatives from the state to create a public policy fellowship for students from Louisiana’s law schools.

“It’s a passion project of mine, that I think could become a good path forward in public service for students,” said Little.

Chris Ralston (L’99)

Ralston, as president of the TAA  and in other capacities has served as a de facto advisor to the Tulane Law dean for years and has been a steadfast mentor to many Tulane Law students. He is a current member of the Tulane Board of Directors and serves as an advisor across the university in numerous advisory roles and leadership capacities. 

Ralston serves as the Chair of the Tulane Law Hall of Fame, where he leads Phelps Dunbar in the Law Firm Challenge, has co-chaired his reunion several times including hosting his 20th (and upcoming 25th) reunion, and volunteers his time and expertise to help advise and support the law school in numerous other ways throughout the year. By way of example, Ralston leads the Louisiana State Bar Association's Access to Justice Internship Program, of which Tulane Law School is a founding member, for outstanding rising 2L law students with a demonstrated interest in and commitment to public interest work. 

 Ralston serves on the board of the New Orleans Bar Association Board of Directors, having served as the organization’s president in 2016-2017. He received NOBA’s Presidents' Award in 2022, honored for his professional excellence, integrity and dedication to service. He is a recent president of the Louisiana Bar Foundation and has served on the board and as board chair of The Pro Bono Project. He was recently the national board chairman of the American Diabetes Association and is currently board chair of Louisiana's chapter of the ADA, as well as an appointed member of the Louisiana Access to Justice Commission.

 Ralston’s legal work centers on antitrust and trade secret disputes, cybersecurity and IP litigation. 

"Tulane Law School gave and continues to give me so much – and not just a great legal education. It provided me insight into career paths and options that I wasn't even aware of, offered support and rich opportunities, and fostered lifelong relationships that I continue to value and to hold dear to this day," Ralston said. "I am honored and proud to work with the Dean and the rest of the board in this role to help the law school continue to excel and to thrive."