The Legal Advocate

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All posts by Alli Keefe

LEAP/NITA Public Service Program

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NITA once again joined forces with LEAP, a non-profit organization in New York, to provide a public service program. NITA and LEAP worked together in 2015 on a Teacher Training and a Trial Skills program but this year the topic was Trial Evidence. The training took place October 2-3 in New York and was generously hosted by the law firm, Kirkland & Ellis LLP.  Senior Vice President of CAMBA, Inc., Janet Miller, was instrumental in working with NITA to put the training together.

NITA Program Director Barbara Barron, who has been a NITA Faculty member on over 100 programs, brought her knowledge and advocacy skills to lead this program. Some of the skills taught included: direct examinations, evidentiary foundations, direct examination with exhibits, and more. As is true NITA fashion, the participants were able to practice these skills and received direct feedback.

One participant stated, “I really liked the course and am glad I was able to attend… The faculty was excellent at demonstrating and pushing us to perform.” Likewise, others agreed they gained many skills from this training

Kansas Public Service Advocacy Skills/NITA Program

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On October 26-28 NITA headed to Kansas in order to conduct a public service training which was funded by a grant from the Kansas Bar Foundation. This training has been conducted for many years and was once again led by NITA Program Director, Judge C. William Ossmann who worked alongside longtime NITA Faculty Mark Caldwell and Judge Robert McGahey from Colorado, as well Public Defender Jessica Glendening, Assistant United States Attorney Dustin Slinkard, and Criminal Defense Attorney Paul Oller. Together – this team trained a diverse group – 6 legal aid attorneys, 3 public defenders, 4 prosecutors, and 4 attorneys from the Attorney General’s office.

The faculty came from a variety of backgrounds which brought immense knowledge on trial skills to the training. Of the diverse faculty, one participant stated, “The faculty worked well together and I appreciated that their feedback and remarks had consistency.”

The trial skills training was held at the Sternberg Museum in Hays, Kanas. This three-day training included skills such as: direct and cross examination, analyzing exhibits, and opening and closing arguments – following the tried and true NITA Method.  One participant stated, “This course was fantastic and I was able to use the tips and tricks I learned that weekend as soon as I was back in the office on Monday. I already feel more confident going into court because I am following the steps NITA laid out for me.”

Furthermore, Program Director C. William Ossmann stated, “It was rewarding to see everyone using their time together to improve their trial skills to benefit their clients, no matter where they might be seated in the courtroom.”

The Kansas program shifts year to year from eastern Kansas to western Kansas and will return to Topeka in 2018.

Federal Rules of Evidence

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The handy guide for U.S. Courts and Magistrates, Federal Rules of Evidence has been amended through December 1, 2017. The small-format packaging is designed so you can easily tuck the book into a pocket or briefcase. The spiral binding allows you to place the book flat on a desk or table, so you can quickly reference pages without damaging the spine.

Retail Price: $25

Order here in: Print, Epub, or Mobi

Robert VanderLaan Scholarship Memorial – Saturday, November 11, 2017

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On Saturday, November 11th, many gathered to honor and celebrate the late Robert Vanderlaan who dedicated 35 years of his life as a NITA faculty member. NITA Program Director Dan Rabinovitz and faculty member Jon Barnard helped to create a NITA program scholarship in Bob’s name. Jon, Dan and faculty member Mike Kelly (pictured from left to right) were all integral in organizing the event which was held at Mike Ditka’s restaurant in Chicago, one of Bob’s favorite places.

“The evening was a smashing success. People came from across the country to honor Bob’s memory. Many stories were told – people laughed and cried. The evening concluded with live music being played that Bob always loved.”

Many attendees gave memorable toasts as well – sharing stories and memories of Bob. Pictured to the right is NITA Faculty Thomas Geraghty giving his toast.

The Robert Vanderlaan Memorial Scholarship is still receiving donations. For information please click here to read NITA’s full article on how to donate.

 

 

 

 

Evidence in Context

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Written by Authors Robert Burns, Steven Lubet, and Richard E. Moberly, Evidence in Context is designed to create a fully contextual understanding of the law of evidence. It contains two relatively detailed case files, quite similar to the material a trial lawyer may have as he or she approaches trial. The second file is a civil action for defamation brought on by a former employee against her very wealthy employer. The cases raise realistic and challenging issues in the law of evidence and allow for a critical assessment of that law. They are followed by over 300 problems for class analysis and discussion.

Retail Price: $75

Order Here: Print, Epub, Mobi

NITA’s team of practicing lawyers, professors and judges from around the nation dedicates its efforts to the training and development of skilled and ethical legal advocates to improve the adversarial justice system.

NITA’s Goals are to:

  • Promote justice through effective and ethical advocacy.
  • Train and mentor lawyers to be competent and ethical advocates in pursuit of justice.
  • Develop and teach trial advocacy skills to support and promote the effective and fair administration of justice.
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