Faculty Forum: May 2018

Faculty Forum is a monthly feature written by Teri Baxter highlighting the achievements of faculty at UT Law including publications in academia and the media, speaking engagements, interviews, awards, and other accomplishments.

Director Renee Allen’s article, #SocialJustice: Combatting Implicit Bias in an Age of Millennials, Colorblindness & Microaggressions, (with DeShun Harris), was recently published at 18 U. Md. L.J. Race Relig. Gender & Class 1 (2018).

Professor Rob Blitt’s scholarship on Russia was recently cited in a staff report for the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, titled “Putin’s Asymmetric Assault on Democracy in Russia and Europe: Implications for U.S. National Security.” “Scholar Robert Blitt notes that ‘the Russian government, in an effort to restore its lost role as a global superpower, has recruited the Church as a primary instrument for rallying together a dubious assortment of states and religious representatives to support a new international order. This new order is premised on the rejection of universal human rights and the revival of relativism, two principles that serve the Church well.’”

Professor Dean Rivkin was quoted in a story by Nashville Public Radio entitled “Why Some Experts Say An Attempt To Reform Juvenile Justice In Tennessee Came Up Short.” Professor Rivkin served on an expert panel that wrote the first draft of the Juvenile Justice Reform Act and he argued that the Act had been “gutted” by legislators before being sent to Governor Haslam.

Professor Greg Stein’s co-authored book, A Practical Guide to Commercial Real Estate Transactions: From Contract to Closing, which was published by the American Bar Association in 2016, was selected as “Book of the Month” by the eRPTE Report. This report is the newsletter of the ABA’s Real Property, Trust and Estate Section.

Professor Stein’s recent article, Reverse Exactions, which was published in the William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal earlier this year, was noted in the “Keeping Current – Property” column of Probate & Property. “Keeping Current” offers readers a look at recent cases, articles, and legislation in the areas of real property, trusts, and estates.

Professor Maurice Stucke was quoted in the Fortune article, “Can T-Mobile and Sprint Finally Make It Work?” Professor Stucke noted that the arguments in support of the merger between T-Mobile and Sprint are not new, and that there is no reason to believe that Justice Department antitrust division’s opposition to prior merger attempts were wrong.

Professor Penny White was quoted recently in the article “Special report: Metro Nashville lawyer asks about abortion, menstrual cycle in child sex assault suit” published in The Tennessean. The special report concerned litigation between a mother and her daughter and Metro Nashville public schools arising out of unwelcomed sexual contact at the school and focused on the treatment of the family by the school administrators and their lawyers. Lawyers challenged deposition questions concerning the sexual history, use of birth control, and the medical care for both the mother and the daughter. Professor White discussed the procedural posture of depositions, the evidentiary foundation for such questions, and the ethical propriety of the inquiry.

Professor White presented a program for lawyers in Tennessee who are seeking capital certification for the annual Capital Defense Seminar held this spring. Her topic – Preserving Error in Capital Cases – is the subject of three articles that will be published in the TACDL magazine. The subject matter of the three articles – error preservation during pretrial, post-trial, and at trial – will also be integrated into the 2018 revision of Professor White’s Capital Defense Handbook, which will be published in September.

Professor White presented a lecture on Judicial Selection and the Politics of Death at Yale Law School on April 2 of this year. While that lecture focused on how judicial selection methods can impact the trial of capital cases, the broader impact that judicial selection has on the overall administration of justice is the topic of Professor White’s latest article, The Other Costs of Judicial Elections, 68 DePaul Law Review 369 (Winter 2018). This article was an offshoot of a presentation that Professor White gave during the 23rdannual Clifford Symposium on Civil Justice held at DePaul Law School. Professor White’s presentation was one of several on the topic of the impact of dark money on judicial elections and judicial behavior.

Professor White has also recently published an article in the 2017-18 edition of Case in Point, the journal of the National Judicial College. The article, entitled “A Far Less Perfect Union,” discusses the impact of the various perspectives and experiences of Supreme Court justices on the current judicial selection landscape.