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Posted March 6, 2014

Meet Your New SBA President, Alexander Matthews

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Alexander Matthews

Alexander Matthews says he'll expand student engagement as the new president of the Student Bar Association at UVA Law.

Second-year University of Virginia School of Law student Alexander Matthews has been elected president of the school’s Student Bar Association for 2014-15. His term began this week.

Hometown: I was born in Houston. Even though I moved to New York City when I was 3, I am still an Astros, Rockets and Texans fan and go to games whenever I am back in Houston.

Prior education: B.A. in History, Kenyon College, 2008

Prior work experience: Between college and law school, I worked in Washington, D.C., for the Energy and Environment Subcommittee of the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology. I learned a great deal, not just about the legislative and policy-making processes, but also about the importance of professionalism. I've worked to bring that level of commitment and responsibility to law school, and I look forward to maintaining that approach during my term as SBA president.

Future career plans: I'll be working this summer at Pillsbury in Washington, D.C. I'm particularly looking forward to having the chance to work in the firm's energy and environmental practices, two areas of law I've become very interested in as a result of my work in Congress.

Favorite law class or subject: The caliber of the UVA Law faculty is uniformly outstanding, so it's impossible to pick just one class. I greatly enjoyed taking Administrative Law last semester with Professor Michael Livermore. He has an extensive background in environmental law and regulation, so it was particularly interesting for me to analyze both recent and historical cases in that area. Of my first-year courses, I really enjoyed Torts with Professor Barbara Armacost and Constitutional Law with Professor Jim Ryan. Professor Ryan has since moved on to become dean of the Harvard Graduate School of Education, but both he and Professor Armacost had a profound impact on my first year at UVA Law.

What you look forward to as SBA president: I look forward to becoming a trusted leader with whom students, alumni, faculty and administrators feel comfortable speaking. I look forward to working with everyone involved with UVA Law to make next year as fulfilling as it can possibly be for the entire student community.

Top goals as SBA president: I served this past year on the constitutional reform committee, which updated the SBA constitution and improved its committee structure. With the help of Vice President Ashley Singletary-Claffee, who will be charged with overseeing SBA Committee initiatives, I want to challenge committees to be aggressive in meeting their responsibilities in a number of areas, including student activities programming, fundraising, improving our building services and grounds, and alumni relations. I would also like to expand student engagement with the SBA—that is one of the reasons Ashley and I plan to hold weekly office hours. My goal is to keep the SBA in tune with the needs of the law student community and positioned to respond to them in as timely a way as possible.