Each year the University of Arizona names its Centennial Achievement Award recipients, recognizing "outstanding achievement and contributions of graduate students who have shown academic achievement despite facing challenging social, economic, or educational obstacles."
Today we highlight the accomplishments of third-year JD students DeLorean Forbes and Andrea Sharptwo of six (out of more than 10,000!) University of Arizona students at the doctoral and master's levels to receive this recognition this year.
Reading the stories of these determined and dedicated law students has special meaning for me today in the context of our country's presidential transition, social unrest, and ongoing public health challenges. 

On Inauguration Day, I hope we can reflect on the meaning and moment of our democracy.

I have been inspired by the durability of our country's political institutions, even now.

I was struck by the sustained and consistent manner in which local and state elections officials, and state and federal judges, navigated these past ten weeks.
I have long been inspired by Martin Luther King, Jr.'s example of peaceful protest and peaceful democracy, which we also celebrate this week.
Every day I am inspired by and grateful for the hard work of Arizona's front-line medical professionals as together we work through the profound challenge of the coronavirus.
And I put great hope in our law students, who demonstrate again and again their capacity for optimism, hard work, and the search for a way forward, no matter how great the challenge.
Please stay safe, stay hopeful, and draw some inspiration from DeLorean and Andrea, as I do.
Until the footnotes,
Be Inspired by Our Centennial Achievement Awardees

In the fall of 1987, the University of Arizona Division of Student Affairs and the Graduate College inaugurated the Centennial Achievement Graduate Student Award to recognize outstanding achievement and contributions by Graduate College students and to provide financial assistance to encourage these students to complete their graduate studies.

We proudly congratulate awardees DeLorean Forbes (3L) and Andrea Sharp (3L) for their contributions to the university's community.

DeLorean Forbes (3L)

Of his award, DeLorean says,
"I am deeply honored to be one of the recipients of this award and proud to have had the opportunity to serve my Arizona Law community during my time here at the law college. The coronavirus pandemic has presented a unique challenge for me and my fellow law students this year, and I have relished the opportunity to help the college adapt and overcome it." 
DeLorean serves as president of the Black Law Students Association (BLSA), the editor-in-chief of the Arizona Journal of International & Comparative Law and a Distinguished Scholar in Arizona Law's Distinguished Scholars Program. He is also the recipient of the college's Charles Marshall Smith Scholarship. 

He served as a student representative on Arizona Law's New Safe Return Committee and, subsequently, the College of Law's COVID Task Force, where he assisted in developing and implementing a plan to allow the college to safely continue operations during the 2020-21 academic year during the COVID-19 pandemic.
DeLorean is spearheading efforts to host BLSA's monthly social justice speaker series, Coffee Conversations with BLSA, in which the student organization hosts speakers from around the country to discuss social, economic and legal issues that are of import to the Black community. (See below for details on February's panel.)

He shares,
"I am proud of the work that the Black Law Students Association does here at the college and thankful for all of the mentors and allies that we have had the chance to collaborate with as we try to do our part to meet the moment during this pivotal period in the struggle for racial justice."

Andrea Sharp (3L)

Andrea shares,
"I am honored to have been selected from among other talented, passionate students at the University of Arizona for a 2020 Centennial Achievement Award. In my time at Arizona Law, I have been surrounded by colleagues, professors, and practitioners who saw my potential, encouraged me, and put their faith in me. Without them, I never would have had numerous opportunities to contribute to this community, and in the words of another lawyer, work to ensure the law serves the people. As I near graduation, the Arizona Law community reminds me of the values I want to carry forward in my career."
During her time at Arizona Law Andrea has volunteered at the Name and Gender Marker Clinic, a semiannual event organized by Arizona Law's Pride Law, to help individuals change their name or gender marker on official documents. She has also created a step-by-step guide, which will be used by legal aid organizations in Arizona, for pro se litigants facing eviction because of their disabilities. 
Andrea is a member of Arizona Law's Law Women's Association, the Arizona Women Lawyers Association and the American Inn of Court. She serves as managing editor of the Arizona Law Review. She is also supported by the college's Dan B. Dobbs Scholarship.

Around the College

BLSA Coffee Conversation Series

Black History Month Special Topic: 
"Reparations -- Theories and Possible Models"
When: February 22, 12:00 p.m. MST
The Black Law Students Association (BLSA) invites you to attend a special edition of their Coffee Conversation Series. To recognize Black History Month, BLSA is partnering with the Native American Law Students Association and the Arizona Law Review to host a panel to discuss the theory behind reparations, as well as the feasibility and possible forms thereof. 

Prof. Jody David Armour
Prof. Rebecca
Prof. Katherine

BLSA is excited to host USC Gould School of Law Professor Jody David Armour, Columbia Law School Professor Katherine Franke, and Arizona Law's own Professor Rebecca Tsosie on the panel, and looks forward to a serious, critical evaluation of reparations for slavery and Native land theft.

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

Call to Employers -- Participate in Spring Recruiting!

Sonoran Desert Public Sector Career Fair -- back in the day.
The Arizona Law Career Development Office invites employers to participate in spring recruiting! This year, all recruiting events will take place virtually, making it easier than ever to connect with Arizona Law talent.
The Spring Interview Program, taking place now through February 12, will host law firms and corporate employers to interview 1L and 2L students for summer positions and 3L students for post-graduate positions.

The 20th annual Sonoran Desert Public Sector Career Fair will host public interest organizations and government agencies looking to hire for internships, externships, and post-graduate positions. This year's event will take place on February 18 and 19.
If you are interested in participating in our organized recruiting events, please reach out to Assistant Director for Employer Engagement, Shannon Walker, at



Lisa Abrams
Gary Cohen
Jeffrey Sklar

Arizona Governor Doug Ducey has announced the appointment of three University of Arizona alumni to the Pima County Superior Court: Lisa Abrams ('93), Gary Cohen ('93), and Jeffrey Sklar (BA '04)Read the announcement here.

In the News

TechTarget, quoting professor Derek Bambauer, commentary authored by Jonathan Rothschild
Planetizen, referencing Arizona Law's Innovation for Justice Program
Arizona Public Media, with commentary by professor Melissa Tatum

I close this week's newsletter by noting the passing of Mark I. Harrison, a dear friend of the college and our honorary alumnus. His firm, Osborn Maledon has shared a statement.

Mark was a frequent visitor at our college, a steady interlocutor, asking questions and offering help on various initiatives, and a good friend and mentor, to me and so many others.

In 2014, friends and family, including Mark's daughter
Jill Harrison ('98), established the Mark I. Harrison Scholarship at the College of Law in his honor. Mark attended that year's Scholarship Lunch (above) and shared these words with students (which we published here in Letter of the Law, along with a profile of Mark):
"After fifty-three years in the active practice of law, I continue to believe that the law is a noble if not the noblest profession and one which enables us, as lawyers, to perform great service to our clients, to protect the civil rights and civil liberties of all citizens and to safeguard the institutions which assure the continuation of this democracy. When you are admitted to practice law, you are really granted a franchise and to borrow a phrase often linked with the medical profession, it is your sacred duty in exercising that franchise 'to do no harm'." 

May these words from Mark, along with his deeds, continue to inspire us far into the future.


Marc Signature


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