Chicago-Kent wins third consecutive championship in the William E. McGee National Civil Rights Moot Court Competition
Team also honored with first-place best brief award
For the third year in a row, Chicago-Kent College of Law at Illinois Tech has won the national championship and best brief award at the William E. McGee National Civil Rights Moot Court Competition. The tournament, sponsored by Mitchell Hamline School of Law, was held February 18 to 20, 2016, in Minneapolis.
This year, students argued Currier v. Jackson Women's Health Organization, a case out of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit that raises complex issues about abortion rights and regulations of physicians. Second-year students Maxwell Eichenberger, Kathleen Karnig and Jenna Kim prevailed over a team from the University of North Carolina in the final round to win the championship.
"Our teams' ability to answer tough questions clearly and convincingly served them well against very strong competition," commented Professor Kent D. Streseman, director of Chicago-Kent's Ilana Diamond Rovner Program in Appellate Advocacy.
Winning team member Maxwell Eichenberger graduated from the University of Wisconsin–Madison with a bachelor's degree in political science and legal studies. Teammate Kathleen Karnig earned a bachelor's degree in psychology from Saint Louis University. Teammate Jenna Kim graduated from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with a bachelor's degree in sociology. The team was coached by third-year students Alex Beehler and Peter Cheun, both members of the Chicago-Kent team that won the competition last year.
A second Chicago-Kent team comprising Rebecca Horgan, Ryan Suniga and Kelsey Weyhing won four rounds of arguments before they were eliminated in a close quarterfinal round. The team was coached by third-year students Alexandra McNicholas, also a member of last year's winning team, and Matthew Smart.
The competition is named for William E. McGee, the first African American to be appointed chief public defender in the state of Minnesota. Mr. McGee also served as prosecutor for Hennepin County and as executive director at the Legal Rights Center, a nonprofit, community-based organization that represents low-income people of color.
Chicago-Kent's Ilana Diamond Rovner Program in Appellate Advocacy, the umbrella program for many of the law school's moot court activities, was established in 1992. Since then, Chicago-Kent students have won numerous individual honors and regional and national competitions, including consecutive titles in the New York City Bar Association's National Moot Court Competition.