Graduation Media Advisory

Festivities Culminate Studies During Law School’s 150th Anniversary Year
Press contact:
James O’Neill 212-854-1584 Cell: 646-596-2935
May 16, 2008 (NEW YORK) - Cynthia McFadden ’84, co-anchor of ABC News’ “Nightline” and “Primetime Live” programs, has been selected by students to give the keynote address at Columbia Law School’s graduation ceremony on May 22.
This year’s graduation takes place during the Law School’s 150th anniversary year.  For a timeline of highlights that marked Columbia Law School’s initial 150 years, click here. For information about Columbia Law School sesquicentennial events, click here.
WHAT: Columbia Law School Graduation Ceremony
WHEN: Thursday, May 22, 2008 from 1:45 p.m. to 5 p.m.
WHERE: South Lawn, Columbia University in the City of New York; Broadway at West 116 Street. Via subway: #1 train to 116 Street (Broadway)/Columbia University.
NOTE TO MEDIA: Media who wish to attend should RSVP in advance at 212-854-2650 or [email protected]. Journalists covering the graduation should use the main gates to enter campus at 116th Street and Broadway. Please pick up media badges at the northwest corner entrance of the South Lawn. A mult-box will be provided.
The graduation will also be Webcast. To view, click here: WEBCAST. Please note the link will not be active until 15 minutes prior to the start of the 2 p.m. ceremony.
This year’s graduation will feature a speech by Prof. Philip Genty, selected by the Class of 2008 as winner of the Willis Reese Teaching Prize. Graduating students Brian Larkin of Suitland, Maryland, elected to represent his fellow J.D. candidates, and Thomas Krawitz, of Munich, Germany, elected to represent his fellow LL.M. candidates, will also speak. Outgoing Student Senate President Tope Yusuf will give remarks as well.
This year’s graduates include Otto Saki, 27, an LL.M. candidate from Harare, Zimbabwe, who left Africa last year because he had become targeted for his work with Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights. Saki represented Morgan Tsvangirai, the likely winner of the contested March election if the Mugabe government there releases the vote results. For profiles on some other graduates, click here.
For a story outlining highlights from the academic year, including faculty scholarship, click here.
For a story on student work, including the many accomplishments students achieved for pro bono clients through the law School’s seven clinics, click here.
This year’s graduation, held during the Law School’s 150th anniversary, will also honor the Class of 1958, which will celebrate its 50th reunion year. Members of that class include H.F. (Gerry) Lenfest, to whom Columbia Law School earlier this year gave its most prestigious award, the Medal For Excellence.
Lenfest, president of the Lenfest Foundation, has given more than $30 million to the Law School, including more than $15 million to build Lenfest Hall, the Law School’s premier residence hall. He is also helping the Law School endow 10 new professors’ chairs with matching gifts.
McFadden, who joined ABC News in 1994 as the network’s legal correspondent, was named co-anchor of “Nightline” in 2005 and co-anchor of “Primetime” in 2007. She has reported numerous exclusives, including an exclusive interview with Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf in 2005, after the London bombings.
McFadden graduated from Columbia Law School in 1984, then spent eight years as executive producer of Fred Friendly’s Media and Society seminars at Columbia University. In 1991 she joined the brand new Courtroom Television Network and worked as an anchor and senior producer. She anchored live coverage of more than 200 trials, including the William Kennedy Smith rape trial, the Menendez brothers’ murder trial and the Rodney King trial.
 Columbia Law School, founded in 1858, stands at the forefront of legal education and of the law in a global society. Columbia Law School joins traditional strengths in international and comparative law, constitutional law, administrative law, business law and human rights law with pioneering work in the areas of intellectual property, digital technology, sexuality and gender, and criminal law.