Alison Wright '08 Speech Introducing Prof. Genty
Alison Wright: Presentation of Willis Reese Prize
We're big Professor Genty fans in the Class of 2008. I've been asking classmates to describe him, and here's what they say: He is kind. Delightful. Lovely. Amazing. A treasure. The best professor at CLS.
Part of the reason we think he's wonderful is the genuine respect he shows us. In a professional responsibility class with 80 students, he knows everyone's names by the end of the first day. He remembers everything we've said in class. It's not unusual for him to stop us in the halls to continue a discussion that started a week ago. This isn't just a pedogogical technique – he actually listens to us, takes us seriously, and encourages us to do the same. We care so much about him because he genuinely cares about us.
But most of all, we value him because he has helped so many of us develop the knowledge, confidence, and experience to become the kinds of lawyers we want to be. He never told us who we should be or what we should believe. Instead, he challenged each of his students to ask herself honestly – what do I value? How will I treat my clients? What responsibility do I have to my community? Because of Professor Genty, we will be better, more ethical lawyers. But also, I think, we will be better people.
And so it is my great privilege to present the Willis Reese Teaching Prize to Professor Philip Genty.