Press Release

Anderson & Denis Rise to the Top in
30th Annual Prize Moot Court Competition

March 23, 2012

DeKalb, Ill.--Second-year NIU Law students Nicole Anderson and Arielle Denis were crowned champions of the 30th Annual Prize Moot Court Competition held at the NIU College of Law on March 3, 2012. Anderson and Denis advanced through three rounds of competition over the previous three weeks to reach the finals where they emerged victorious. The team was also awarded the Best Respondent’s Brief of the competition.

The 30th anniversary celebration of Moot Court featured a distinguished panel of judges throughout the competition. In the semifinals, the competitors were judged by Justice Thomas M. Lytton, Illinois Appellate Court, Third District; Justice Susan Fayette Hutchinson, Illinois Appellate Court, Second District; Justice William E. Holdridge, Illinois Appellate Court, Third District; Justice Mary K. O’Brien, Illinois Appellate Court, Third District; Justice Michael J. Burke, Illinois Appellate Court, Second District; and Justice Joseph E. Birkett, Illinois Appellate Court, Second District.

The final arguments were presided over by Chief Justice Thomas L. Kilbride of the Illinois Supreme Court and Judges Sharon Johnson Coleman and Robert M. Dow, Jr., both of the United States District Court, Northern District of Illinois.

The 30th Annual Moot Court Competition champions and final bench.

Standing (from left): Dean Jennifer Rosato; finalists Karen Levin and Carolyn Nevin; and Moot Court champions Nicole Anderson and Arielle Denis. Seated (from left): Hon. Robert M. Dow, Jr., United States District Court, Northern District of Illinois; Chief Justice Thomas L. Kilbride, Illinois Supreme Court; Hon. Sharon Johnson Coleman, United States District Court, Northern District of Illinois; and Moot Court advisor Associate Dean Lenny Mandell.

The simulated case argued during the final round centered on immigration law. The issues included the legality of reopening an immigrant removal case based on precedent, and the potential violation of the Fifth Amendment because of gender-based differences in rules for transmitting citizenship to immigrant children.

Following the competition, awards were presented to the Moot Court championship team of Anderson and Denis; the runner-up team of Karen Levin and Carolyn Nevin also received the Best Petitioner’s Brief award, and Levin received the Best Oralist award in the final round during the Moot Court banquet.

Moot Court XXX Champions Nicole Anderson and Arielle Denis.



2012 Moot Court Champions
Nicole Anderson and Arielle Denis

 

 

 

The NIU College of Law’s Prize Moot Court Competition was established as a student organization in 1983 by Associate Dean Leonard Mandell, who serves as its faculty advisor. Dean Mandell has been the driving force behind the Prize Moot Court competition since its inception in 1982, and has seen a wealth of competitors advance to great success in national moot court competitions.

“For thirty years, the Moot Court program has helped to enrich the legal education of our students in the best sense, who, as they gain experience, become positive contributors to the profession and to our law school as moot court alumni,” said Mandell. “It’s been gratifying to witness these students beginning their legal careers -- learning how to advocate, thinking on their feet, getting accustomed to appearing in court, and having fun while doing so.”

The Moot Court Society organizes and runs the competition to further the advancement of appellate advocacy. The Prize Moot Court Competition is open to second-year students and gives them an opportunity to draft briefs and argue cases in a simulated appellate court before panels of moot court judges.

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For more information, contact:
Melody Mitchell
Alumni Events & Public Relations
(815) 753-9655 or mmitchell@niu.edu