New York, Oct. 1, 2012—Famed civil rights attorney Theodore (Ted) Shaw ’79, Professor of Professional Practice at Columbia Law School, will put his trial advocacy skills to the test today when he argues an affirmative action case at a mock court event staged by the Office of the Appellate Defenders (OAD).
Shaw is one of the nation’s foremost civil rights litigators, and he has presented affirmative action cases before the U.S. Supreme Court several times during his accomplished career. He will present arguments in a mock case patterned on one of the most important cases of the fall 2012 term of the Supreme Court: Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin, which concerns the continued viability of affirmative action in college admissions. The actual Fisher case will be argued before the Supreme Court on October 10, 2012.
Karen Patton Seymour will also argue before the OAD mock Supreme Court. Seymour, a partner at Sullivan & Cromwell, is a former chief of the criminal division of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York. Michael Mukasey, former United States Attorney General and federal judge, will serve as chief justice.
Shaw and Seymour will receive this year’s Gould Award, which OAD presents annually to two of the nation’s most accomplished advocates.
Before joining the Law School, Shaw served as president of the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund. He was lead counsel in 2003 for a coalition representing Black and Latino students in Gratz v. Bollinger, a case brought before the Supreme Court that challenged undergraduate affirmative action policies at the University of Michigan. That case was joined with Grutter v. Bollinger, which challenged the affirmative action program at Michigan’s law school, where Shaw once taught and helped to fashion the admissions policies that were ultimately upheld by the Supreme Court.
Shaw has trained, worked, and consulted with human rights lawyers in Africa, South America, Europe, and Asia.
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