Alumni Breakfast Series Draws Graduates for Timely Talks

Spring 2012

The Columbia Law School Association kicked off its 2011–12 Alumni Breakfast Series this past winter with presentations by prominent graduates and faculty on subjects including taxation, enforcement of securities laws, and international arbitration.

Under the auspices of the series, which seeks to broaden engagement among the Law School’s intellectual community, guest speakers deliver early morning lectures and field questions from attendees over a catered continental breakfast. The gatherings give guests an exclusive opportunity to exchange ideas with fellow graduates working in academia, private practice, and public service, and to engage with Columbia Law School faculty.

At one recent event hosted by Thomas J. Reid ’87 LL.M. and Po Y. Sit ’88 at the New York City office of Davis Polk & Wardwell, Professor Michael J. Graetz, a leading expert on national and international tax law, addressed an audience of more than 50 on the subject of tax reform. During his talk, Graetz, who has written and edited numerous books on federal taxation, discussed potential options for reforming the Internal Revenue Code by taxing consumption instead of income.

The series also recently featured a talk by George S. Canellos ’89, the director of the New York office of the Securities and Exchange Commission, who spoke about the challenges that arise in the federal-state enforcement model for securities laws. Canellos’ talk was held at the New York City office of Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz, and was hosted by Paul Vizcarrondo Jr. ’73.

Other events in the series included a talk by Dean David M. Schizer at the Conrad Miami Hotel that was sponsored by Edward Soto ’78 and Weil, Gotshal & Manges; and a discussion hosted by Amanda J. Gallagher ’94 featuring Professor George A. Bermann ’75 LL.M., who offered reflections on the American Law Institute’s current Restatement of the U.S. Law of International Commercial Arbitration project, for which he is the chief reporter.