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Special Interest Doug Robertson Birmingham Lawyers, Judges Instruct Restoration Academy Students in Legal Awareness Workshop This spring, the Birmingham Bar Asso- District of Alabama where the students cluded the course in preparation for the ciation’s Public Service Committee (PSC) met Judges Abdul K. Kallon and John E. mock trial. teamed with local lawyers and judges to Ott. Law clerks Tempe Smith, Richard On their final week, the students had bring the courtroom to the classroom for Vann, and Anna Belle Norton also visited the opportunity to conduct the mock trial select students in Fairfield’s Restoration with the students, while Marshal Chester in Judge Annetta Verin’s courtroom be- Academy by coaching them through a Martin Keely and Deputy Marshal Wade fore the Honorable Judge Verin herself. six-week trial advocacy course that culmi- Thomas guided the students in a tour After the trial, Judge Verin gave point- nated in a mock trial before the Honor- that ended with an observation of actual ers to the students and fielded questions. able Annetta Verin. The PSC developed closing arguments. Georgia Haggerty, Judge Verin also encouraged the students the program to create an opportunity law clerk to Judge Virginia E. Hopkins, by sharing the story of how she decided to for students who have had little-to-no helped coordinate the visit along with pursue a career in law. exposure to the practice of law to evaluate clerk Allison Case. The Restoration Academy students their skills, abilities, interests, and goals On each of the following weeks, the admitted to being a bit nervous at the within the field of law. The PSC’s vision students traveled to a different law firm thought of arguing their case before an for its Legal Awareness Workshop, or for a lecture and tour. The participat- actual judge in an actual courtroom, but “LAW” program fit hand-in-glove with ing firms took responsibility for hosting were more at ease once the trial began. the vision of Restoration Academy, which the students over lunch and presenting “I thought it would be intense and I seeks to equip students that week’s materi- was nervous,” said Restoration Academy coming from difficult fam- als. Honora Gath- freshman, Leslie Thompson. “But with studentOne with the tools they need to insightfully noted Law introduced the lots of preparation, I built confidence.” Gathings withings circumstances social andily break generational cycles students to the gen- Restoration Academy history teacher not is therethat began the program having one type of person covery and led dis- Director of Development Ty Williams the of conceptseral students Academy Restoration and CvachoClint Many poverty.of only seen lawyers as they are who makes a students in an inter- were also instrumental in helping theportrayed movies. By the conclusion good lawyer. Audrey Channell for trial. Cvacho guided the studentsexercise.rogatories in prepare and materials the learnstudents or television on of the program, the students “You can be your with Wallace, Jordan, liams coordinated with the hosting law Wil- while week each case thethrough precon-Brandt&Ratliff, having toadmitted ceived notions of lawyers set own person, gave an introduction firms and made sure everyone was where aside and to having gained bring your own to depositions and they needed to be. to practice law. personality to the examination. Adam initiated and developed the six-week cur- Gray David John and McKennaDon trial forpreparation means it what into insight Nine students from profession.” Colvin and Francis riculum with support from PSC members eighth to eleventh grade Quick of Maynard Adam Colvin, Pooja Chawla, and Lorrie completed the program, act- Cooper & Gale in- Parker. Throughout the process, the stu- ing as witnesses, attorneys, and alternates structed the students on opening and dents were coached by Hare Wynn attor- for the mock trial. The program began closing arguments. Restoration Academy ney Ashley Reitz Peinhardt, who has been with an introductory visit to the United board member and Hare Wynn Newell recognized for her success in trial compe- States District Court for the Northern & Newton partner Don McKenna con- titions and coaches trial advocacy teams. 38 Birmingham Bar Association


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