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Law Library News

Law Library News Archive

Jan. 31, 2005.
Kristy Moon, editor.


Judge William L. Dwyer: A Distinguished Alumnus

--Camilla Tubbs

The Honorable William L. Dwyer is perhaps one of the most beloved alumni of the University of Washington. In June 2001, the UW School of Law established the William L. Dwyer Endowed Chair in Law. This chair serves as a grateful acknowledgment of Judge Dwyer’s legal career which spanned more than forty years. And when Judge Dwyer died in 2002, the Federal Bar Association of the Western District of Washington and the UW established the William L. Dwyer Jury Project Award, an annual writing competition on the American jury system, for the UW law students.

Judge Dwyer, who grew up on Queen Anne Hill in Seattle, received his bachelor's degree from the UW, and attended the UW School of Law before earning his law degree from New York University. Before being appointed a U.S. District Court judge in 1987, Dwyer was a vigorous trial lawyer. In 1963, at the height of the "Red Scares" during the Cold War, Dwyer represented Democratic state legislator John Goldmark in a libel suit against political opponents who had falsely accused him of communist sympathies. For both Goldmark and Dwyer, the case was a tremendous victory. Not only did Goldmark receive a $40,000 defamation verdict in his favor, the case marked the first successful libel challenge by a plaintiff accused of communist affiliations. Dwyer wrote a book about his experience working on the case in The Goldmark Case: An American Libel Trial(KF228.G65 D85 1984 at Classified Stacks).

Dwyer also represented the City of Seattle and King County in their antitrust suit against major league baseball's American League, when that League moved the one-year-old Seattle Pilots franchise to Milwaukee, Wisconsin. So relentless was Dwyer, the case settled mid-trial and the Mariners baseball team was established in Seattle.

But perhaps Dwyer will be most remembered for his work as a U.S. District Court judge. In 1991, he rendered a controversial decision that ordered the U.S. Forest Service to adopt a conservation plan to ensure the survival of the spotted owl, much to the chagrin of the Northwest timber loggers.

If you would like to learn more about Judge Dwyer, take a look at his two books, The Goldmark Case: An American Libel Trial (KF228.G65 D85 1984 at Classified Stacks), and In the Hands of the People: The Trial Jury's Origins, Triumphs, Troubles, and Future in American Democracy (KF9680 .D89 2002  at Classified Stacks). Furthermore, a video recording, Upholding the Promise: Profiles in Judicial Courage, which documents Judge Dwyer’s controversial "spotted owl decision," is available (KF8775.U64 1996  at Classified Stacks). And if you are really curious, Pegeen Mulhern, a law librarianship student and an intern at the Gallagher Law Library, clerked for Judge Dwyer during the 1990’s and is more than happy to share her experience with this distinguished legal figure.

Copy Center – New Hours

The Copy Center on L2 has permanently reduced its hours. It is now open Mon-Fri, 8:30am-12:30pm. Their phone number is 685-2623.

Do You Know About JURIST?

How do you keep up with the latest legal news? How do you hear the newest buzz on what’s happening in law schools?

JURIST, http://jurist.law.pitt.edu/, is a legal news web site and a law school news weblog run by a team of law students and law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. It is ad-free, non-commercial, and the only site maintained entirely by a legally-trained staff reporting in real-time. As a public service site, it focuses on substantive legal issues with significant social and jurisprudential implications, rather than sensational legal news about crimes, trials, and celebrities that have mass-market appeal. JURIST also attempts to provide a more even balance of U.S. and international legal news than is common in traditional media. Originally launched in 1996, JURIST has been featured in stories in the Wall Street Journal, Law.com, the National Law Journal, the Chronicle of High Education, and won "the wonderful legal education mega-site" recognition from the New York Times in 2000.

To access the law school news weblog, click on the Legal Education tab or go to http://jurist.law.pitt.edu/lawschoolnews/.

Book of the Week: Winning Every Time

-- Kristy Moon

Lis Wiehl, Winning Every Time: How to Use the Skills of a Lawyer in the Trials of Your Life (New York: Ballantine Books, 2004) (KF5481.W54 2004  at Classified Stacks).

We all go through life negotiating and advocating for ourselves in our workplace, personal relationships, and everyday activities. And although we may be trained in tackling legal problems, many of us can use some help in tackling life’s other trials. Lis Wiehl, a member of our faculty, takes the lessons learned from trial advocacy and translates them into tools that ordinary people can use to deal with challenges in their lives such as buying a car, getting a raise, or standing up to an unhelpful salesclerk. This book is not about turning everyone into argumentative lawyers, but about teaching people how to advocate for themselves on things that are too important to let slide. The book is light, fun, and filled with useful advice that is illustrated with many personal anecdotes.

Part I explains in detail the eight steps to effectively making your case in all types of situations:

  • Know What You Want: The Theory of the Case – articulate a central thesis and establish your final objective.
  • Choose and Cultivate Your Audience: Voir Dire – bring your case to the person who "calls the shots" and know the best time and the place to do so.
  • Marshal Your Evidence: Discovery – systematically gather all the information that supports your case as well as challenges what you’re trying to achieve.
  • Advocate with Confidence: Making the Case – with confidence and not emotion, know what you’re going to say, how you’re going to say it, and what you’ll say to your opponent’s challenges.
  • Counter the Claims: Cross-examination – challenge your opponent’s allegations gently but consistently.
  • Stay True to Your Case: Avoid the Seven Deadly Spins – keep your argument authentic and avoid reacting with inappropriate emotion.
  • Advocate with Heart: Let Me Tell You a Story – humanize your case by shaping it into a personal story.
  • Sum It Up: The Closing Argument – close the deal by restating your theory of the case, referring to the key supporting evidence, reminding the decision maker of the story you’ve told, and asking for the outcome you’re seeking.

Part II is dedicated to special topics such as Wining at Work, Winning in Business and Consumer Negotiations, A Woman’s Voice, Advocacy with Loved Ones, and Eight Steps to Effective Parenting.

Lis Wiehl is an associate professor at the UW School of law, "of counsel" at Perkins Coie, a legal analyst on Fox News channel, a co-host of daily radio show, The Radio Factor, and a legal commentator on National Public Radio’s All Things Considered.