Virginia Governor To Speak at Student Federalist Society Symposium

Symposium speakers

Participants in the Federalist Society student symposium include judges, scholars, practitioners and politicians. Illustration by Warren Craghead

February 24, 2022

Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin will deliver the keynote address at the 2022 Federalist Society National Student Symposium, held at the University of Virginia School of Law on March 4-5.

“The Federalists vs. The Anti-Federalists: Revisiting the Founding Debates,” sponsored by the UVA Law student chapter of the Federalist Society, is expected to attract more than 500 guests from across the nation, and will be livestreamed.

Youngkin will deliver his address March 4 at 5:45 p.m. in the Law School’s Caplin Auditorium.

The Federalist Society “is founded on the principles that the state exists to preserve freedom, that the separation of governmental powers is central to our Constitution, and that it is emphatically the province and duty of the judiciary to say what the law is, not what it should be,” according to the organization’s website.

Organizers said the symposium’s participants will look to the past to better understand the present.

“Our discussions will focus on the debates surrounding the ratification of the Constitution and their implications for the modern day,” said Jessie Mann ’23, the UVA Law chapter’s symposium chair. “Virginia is sometimes thought of as home to the Constitution because of its connection to James Madison, but it is also home to some of the most prominent anti-federalists of the founding period, such as Patrick Henry and George Mason. Down the road from Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello, it is the perfect venue to revisit the founding debates.”

Panelists include UVA Law professors Julia Mahoney, Paul G. Mahoney, Saikrishna Prakash and G. Edward White, as well as alumnus Judge Trevor McFadden ’06 of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia of the District of Columbia and Law School lecturers Judge Amul R. Thapar of the Sixth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals and Judge Andrew S. Oldham of the Fifth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Dean Risa Goluboff will give opening remarks.

Panel discussions will explore originalism, American populism, federal power, executive power and federalism, among other topics. Breakout sessions include a panel on becoming an academic.

Registration is required to attend the symposium. Media requests can be sent to Tom Buchanan at

Registration and Full Schedule


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