Hometown: Germantown, Philadelphia, PA
Undergraduate School: Temple University; Political Science
Job: Business Litigation Associate at Archer & Greiner, P.C.
Temple Law Community
While at Temple Law, I was an Academic Core Enrichment (ACE) Program Counselor, President of the Temple Black Law Student Association (BLSA), and President of the Student Bar Association (SBA). In my third year, I was also a staff editor for the Temple International & Comparative Law Journal (TICLJ). In addition to these opportunities, I was also an official and unofficial law student mentor to many.
My decision to accept Professor James Shellenberger’s offer after my first year to become an ACE Counselor was a no brainer and was a continuation of my personal mission to reach back as I climb. This experience was one that illustrated to me that there was a place in the Temple Law community that would accept my worldview, and cosmological outlook on life and the law.
Undoubtedly, my decision to run for President of BLSA, as a rising second year law student, was amongst the most rewarding experiences I have been given at Temple Law. I wanted to give back to the organization that supplied me with an amazing professional mentor, student mentor, networking opportunities with other BLSA chapters and the Barristers’ Association of Philadelphia, and as the nexus point between myself and BLSA’s faculty mentor Professor Donald Harris. These gifts from BLSA were substantial factors that ensured that my intellectual and academic aptitude were up to par, and that my legal professional identity would be cultivated.
TICLJ was also a deeply enriching activity for me at Temple Law. My legal research and writing skills improved due to editing the citations below the line and the grammar above the line for legal scholarship submitted for publication in our journal. These skill building activities did not feel tedious or unenjoyable because teamwork and community was interwoven into the DNA of everything we did. Also, my comment was picked by the editorial board to be published in issue 33.1 of the journal.
I know that all these experiences have put me in the position of having the building blocks necessary for being a great litigator. These include tactile and intangible skills such as the ability to write a strong brief, motion, or memo, but also the ability to exercise good judgment and the ability to lead when called upon.
I took part in Pennsylvania (PA) Innocence Project and the Federal Judicial Clerkship (FJC) Program. I learned from the PA Innocence Project how to do methodical case reviews in the hopes of finding appealable errors in the record of criminal cases. I also had the opportunity to edit an amicus brief that the PA Innocence Project joined in. I also had a front row seat to how the criminal justice system’s over-reliance to finality precludes people from proving their “actual” innocence. For FJC, I was assigned to former Chief Judge of the Third Circuit, the Honorable Theodore McKee. This experience had a dual role in my maturation as law student. I learned by doing and observing. I had the opportunity to help draft Non-Precedential Opinions, write a portion of bench memo, and see three judge panel and en banc oral arguments. Reading briefs and watching advocates argue gave me insight on what to do and what not to do as a litigator.
Professor Henry J. Richardson III was the most influential in shaping my legal education. Professor Richardson instructed me to take advantage of as many opportunities that Temple Law had to offer. He impressed upon me that Temple Law would be the one time in my legal career that I would have access to the help, intellect, and tools necessary to achieving excellence in our vocation. He also explained to me that while it was imperative that I remain resolute in my service to our community, I made sure that my academic pursuits be substantial and successful. It was this advice that shaped my approach to law school. Professor Richardson was also my faculty advisor for my published TICLJ comment. Through this process, Professor Richardson helped to guide my scholarship and helped me to find my voice. I do not believe that I would have done as well, or challenged myself intellectually, academically, or accepted the leadership positions bestowed upon me had he not mentored me.