Temple University Beasley School of Law held the second annual Temple Law Oral Argument Competition earlier this month, bringing together advocates from several area law schools for a day of training, engagement with appellate specialists and, of course, a chance to test their appellate advocacy skills. The event was sponsored by White and Williams LLP, whose managing partner, Patti Santelle, conferred scholarship awards on both the champions and the individual named “Outstanding Oral Advocate.”
“As a Philadelphia-based firm, White and Williams has strong relationships with the local law schools and we are proud to support this competition,” said Ms. Santelle. “Many of our lawyers are alumni of these schools, including Temple in particular. On a personal note, I participated in moot court competitions in law school, which was an excellent learning experience that helped lay the foundation for my career. It is great to help the tradition continue.”
Temple Law Professor Mary Levy, who organized the event together with Professor Bonny Tavares and Director of Advocacy Programs Jules Epstein, expressed her admiration and gratitude for the firm’s commitment to the competition. “White and Williams’ sponsorship of this competition really transformed the day into a powerful learning opportunity for the student advocates,” she said. “Their support created a forum for the students to meet, learn from, and connect with some of the area’s leading appellate specialists. We’re tremendously grateful for their collaboration with and confidence in us.”
Levy and Tavares teach in Temple’s nationally recognized Advocacy Program, where they bring their expertise in appellate advocacy to the classroom. “Temple Law has been at the forefront of training in trial advocacy for decades,” explained Levy, “and we bring that same cutting-edge approach to teaching appellate advocacy as well. That’s why Temple is really the natural home for a competition like this.”
The competition itself required student advocates to argue the case of Commonwealth v. Brown, currently pending before the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. Participants will have the opportunity to attend the actual argument when it takes place and compare their appellate strategies to those made before the Court.
In the final round of competition, Drexel Law advocates Rachel Greenberg and Yvette Tyson represented Appellant while Eileen Bradley and Steven Johnston from Temple Law represented Appellee. While both teams demonstrated outstanding advocacy skills, the team from Drexel ultimately triumphed, claiming the championship and earning a $500 scholarship from White and Williams LLP. Drexel Law advocate Yvette Tyson was named “Outstanding Oral Advocate” and received a $250 scholarship. The certificates recognizing these awards, and the scholarships, were awarded by White and Williams LLP managing partner, Patti Santelle at the conclusion of the event.
Pictured above: Temple Law Dean Gregory Mandel, Temple Law finalists Eileen Bradley and Steven Johnson, Drexel Law finalists Rachel Greenberg and Yvette Tyson, and White and Williams LLP Managing Partner Patti Santelle.