‘Shaping Justice’ Brings Public Service Community Together in ‘Age of Uncertainty’
The second annual Shaping Justice conference, titled “Shaping Justice in the Age of Uncertainty,” brought students, alumni and public interest lawyers together Feb. 2-3 at the University of Virginia School of Law.
Keynote speaker Kristen Clarke, president and executive director of the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, addressed the woes facing civil rights advocates today, including voting rights, criminal justice concerns, hate groups and a retreat on federal enforcement. But she said those challenges have sparked the public to be “more engaged, more conscious [and] more plugged-in.”
“When you couple the work of lawyers with the tremendous activism that we’re seeing in the streets, I think that provides further reason for optimism,” Clarke said.
Three UVA Law alumni were honored at the conference for their work in public service. Jeffrey Kerr ’87, general counsel of the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals Foundation, received the Shaping Justice Award for Extraordinary Achievement. Kim Rolla ’13 of the Legal Aid Justice Center and Jeree Thomas ’11 of Campaign for Youth Justice received the Shaping Justice Rising Star Award.
The conference is sponsored by UVA Law, the Program in Law and Public Service, the Mortimer Caplin Public Service Center, the student-run Public Interest Law Association and numerous other student organizations.