This week we shine the spotlight on two Phoenix-area alumni whose work has had profound professional and community impacts, Nicole Stanton ('00) and Max Killian ('49). We will honor their accomplishments in just ten days at the  42nd Annual LCA Appreciation Dinner

We also announce the finalists in this year's Grand Closing Arguments Competition,  with our thanks to the generous donor who afforded our students this opportunity.

Until the footnotes,

Nicole F. Stanton ('00)
Nicole France Stanton graduated from Arizona Law in 2000. She is a broadly experienced litigator and corporate attorney, a committed civic servant, and a 2016 recipient of a Professional Achievement Award from the UA Alumni Association.

Nicole was named managing partner of the Quarles & Brady Phoenix office in 2013. She is a senior member of the firm's Professional Liability Team and the associate general counsel of Quarles & Brady as a whole -- a long-established firm anchored in the Midwest, with more than 475 lawyers.
Nicole has worked to create greater workplace flexibility and productivity at the firm. She says, "These changes have made Quarles a more family-friendly employer, but more importantly, they have allowed the firm to retain great talent that might have gone to a competitor or not returned to work at all."
By all accounts Nicole is a master at seeing all sides of the story and successfully resolving disputes. She has served as defense counsel for several local and national law firms and represented accounting firms, financial institutions, and insurance brokers. She also counsels clients on real estate matters, land disputes, breaches of contract, and franchise law. In 2015, she was elected to the American Law Institute and listed in the top 25 Female Attorneys by Southwest Super Lawyers.
Nicole is prolific in her work on behalf of the Phoenix community through organizations including the Women's Metropolitan Arts Council, Charter 100 AZ, Valley Leadership, Arizona Women's Employment and Education, Inc., and a statewide anti-bullying initiative called Stop Bullying AZ, which she founded in 2012.  
Her community service has been recognized time and again. In 2011, she was honored by the YWCA as a leading woman business leader ( watch interview). She was listed among the Phoenix Business Journal's Most Admired Leaders in 2014. In 2015, she was elected to the Arizona Equal Justice Foundation Board, received a GLSEN Phoenix Ally Award, and received a Positively Powerful Woman Award. Most recently, in 2016, she has been selected as one of the Top 100 Lawyers in Arizona by Arizona Business Magazine (she also made this list in 2015) and named an Arizona Business Leader by AZ Big Media.
Nicole has taught and written articles on topics such as professional responsibility, ethics, social media, and bullying.
If you know Nicole you know that she has two beautiful children and is a huge basketball fan. Here she is with one of her children at a Phoenix Mercury game:

C. Max Killian ('49)

Our 1949 alumnus C. Max Killian is an expert real-estate and tax attorney who has practiced in Mesa for 67 years. Over a long and distinguished career, he has handled some of the most complicated real-estate matters in the Phoenix area. We recognize him this year with a UA Alumni Association Professional Achievement Award.

Max grew up as part of an extended farming family, with roots in Graham County and Maricopa County, as well as Colorado, but decided as a young man to pursue an education in the law. After earning his law degree, he began a solo legal practice in Mesa. He later partnered with U.S. Congressman John J. Rhodes, as Rhodes & Killian. Eventually, the firm became Killian, Nicholas, Fischer, Wirken, Cook & Pew.

His background in agriculture has been inextricably linked to his legal career. He has represented farmers and the Arizona Farm Bureau on a wide array of business, water, and land use issues. (Read a Farm Bureau interview with Max and his farming family here: "Meet Arizona Agriculture's Killian Family.")

Three generations stand in front of a citrus orchard that was first planted in Mesa, Arizona, in the 1930s. From left: Max Killian, Nathan Killian, Phillip Killian, Matthew Killian, and Mark Killian.
Photo and caption courtesy of

Max's vast experience in real estate was developed in part through his family's interest in Sunny Mesa Citrus Growers, a packinghouse begun by many of the early citrus growers in the Mesa area. Max eventually assumed responsibility for the legal activities of Sunny Mesa Citrus Growers. He also used his legal and business acumen to develop numerous large cattle ranches in North and South America that benefitted his church's welfare program through their beef production. 

Former Killian firm partner and UA Law alum Chas Wirken ('75) observed, 

"Having grown up in Mesa and worked with Max for over two decades, I know that the East Valley would not be what it is today without his vision and wisdom."

Max has an uncanny ability to negotiate deals and transactions, bringing key participants together with the utmost integrity, bringing benefits to his clients, and, at the same time, positively impacting the community.

Grand Closing Arguments Competition Results
The five finalists (l-r): Matt Ashton, Sarah Levine, Jonathan Leitenberger, 
Troy Anderson, and Jim Carlson.

The final round of the 16th Annual Richard Grand Closing Arguments Competition was held March 28. The event is an oral argument competition emphasizing the presentation of damages evidence in personal injury cases. Student finalists presented mock closing arguments on the issue of how much in damages should be awarded in a civil lawsuit.
Join us in congratulating the five finalists:
1st place ($2,500 prize): Jim Carlson
2nd place ($1,500 prize): Matt Ashton
3rd place ($500 prize): Sarah Levine
4th place ($250 prize each): Troy Anderson and Jonathan Leitenberger

Jim Carlson, 1st place.
The competition is funded by the late Richard Grand, a 1958 graduate of the University of Arizona College of Law and a 2002 recipient of the UA Alumni Association's Professional Achievement Award. Richard passed away in April 2013. His generosity to the law school continues through the support of his wife, Marcia Grand, and the Richard Grand Foundation.
Calling All IPLP Alums to FedBar, April 7
This Thursday the Indigenous Peoples Law and Policy Program (IPLP) and the University of Arizona Native American Legal Students Association (NALSA) are hosting an alumni reception at the Federal Bar Association Indian Law Conference in Scottsdale, Arizona. Last year IPLP had a great turnout, and faculty and students look forward to the chance to catch up with family and friends at the reception. In addition to fellow alumni, faculty, staff, and students, Acting Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs Lawrence Roberts will be in attendance.
When: April 7, 2016, 5-7pm
Where: Talking Stick Resort, Roadrunner Room C
9800 E. Indian Bend Rd.,  Scottsdale, Arizona
If you are interested in attending please email Justin Boro or call 520-626-9224.

Please join us for the presentation of awards honoring and celebrating the remarkable achievements of: Ryan C. Flynn ('06), C. Max Killian ('49), Peter W. Likins, The Honorable Roxanne Song Ong ('78), Nicole F. Stanton ('00), and Gary L. Stuart ('67).

When: Saturday, April 16, 2016, 6 - 9 p.m.
Where: Arizona Historical Society Museum
1300 North College Avenue, Tempe, AZ 85281
$150 per person
$1,500 for a table of ten

Register Today!
For more information and to purchase tickets, please visit 

Seeking Internships for BA in Law Undergrads
If your organization, law firm or business could use some support this summer (or during the school year if you are based in Tucson), let us help you recruit an undergraduate student intern. 

Students who are pursuing the BA in Law are receiving a top-notch legal education from Arizona Law faculty, taking undergraduate courses in property law, contracts, torts, procedure, and criminal law and procedure, among others. They are eager to apply their knowledge in paid or unpaid internships. Since such experiences are meant to prepare them for law-related careers (rather than JD internships meant to prepare students to work as attorneys), internship providers have more flexibility in the work that these students can be assigned, so long as they are gaining an educational benefit. 

For more information, please contact Najwa Nabti, Director of the Undergraduate Law Program ( or 520-626-8373).

Online Alumni Directory

Please take the time to join your  online alumni directory. We are creating a shared resource to support our students and our alumni. If you need us to resend your personalized invitation, please email or call (520) 621-8430.
The latest weekly Arizona Law T-shirt drawing winner from among new directory members is Karen Mais ('03). Congratulations, Karen, and thank you for joining.

As the days get longer and the temperature begins to warm, we enter a part of the annual academic cycle marked by the last month of classes, celebratory dinners -- headlined by our annual LCA dinner and awards -- and thoughts of graduation (for some) and summer work just over the horizon. 
This is also the time of year when prospective students regularly visit the college. Nothing is more valuable to them than talking with the people who live the College of Law experience -- the current students, alumni, staff and faculty.  

Thank you to everyone for the community effort to bring together another spectacular class, a long tradition that produces leaders for the legal profession and society like C. Max Killian and Nicole France Stanton.
Marc L. Miller  
Dean & Ralph W. Bilby Professor of Law
Shaping the next century of legal education 
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