Law Day Celebration and Lawson Moot Court Competition Bring Georgia Supreme Court Justices to Mercer Law

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MACON – Mercer Law School will celebrate Law Day on Friday, April 12, with numerous activities including hosting the Georgia Supreme Court for oral arguments, honoring two distinguished alumni and presenting the annual first-year Hugh Lawson Moot Court Competition.

The Supreme Court of Georgia will hear oral arguments from 10 a.m.-noon in the Bell-Jones Courtroom. The visit will provide an opportunity for students and the local community to observe the Court in action.

At the start of the session, the Court will hold a short admission ceremony allowing any recent law school graduates, alumni or members of the local bar who are not already admitted to the Supreme Court to be admitted at the special session. Instructions for participating in this special admission ceremony are listed on the Court’s website. Applications for admission must be submitted to Joy Littlefield at littlefieldj@gasupreme.us no later than Wednesday, April 3.

Additionally, Professor Sarah Gerwig-Moore will argue on behalf of a client in Mercer Law’s Habeas Project. The Habeas Project is the only program in Georgia to represent non-capital, post-conviction cases on a pro bono basis.

At 2:15 p.m., the Law Day celebration will begin in the Bell-Jones Courtroom with a keynote address by Chief Justice Harold D. Melton of the Georgia Supreme Court.

During the event, the Law School will unveil two new portraits – one of Judge Louis Sands, ’74, and one of Judge Yvette Miller, ’80. Sands serves as Senior U.S. District Court Judge in the Middle District of Georgia, and Miller serves as the first African-American female chief judge on the Georgia Court of Appeals.

The portraits were commissioned by the Black Law Students Alumni Council and painted by artist Steve Moppert. The Georgia Association of Black Women Attorneys and friends of the University also generously supported the commission of the portraits. A reception will follow the unveiling on the second-floor for all attendees.

The afternoon’s events will conclude with the annual first-year Hugh Lawson Moot Court Competition beginning at 3:30 p.m.

The Lawson Competition is a longstanding intraschool competition exclusively for first-year students. Judges for the competition include Georgia Supreme Court Justices John Ellington and Michael Boggs, ’90, Dwight Davis, ’82, third-year student and moot court chair Leesa Guarnotta and third-year student and 2017 winner of the competition Lois C. Weldon.

The student who argues most effectively receives $500 and has his or her name engraved on the King & Spalding Cup.

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Billie Frys