AALS Annual Meeting – Transformative Law – New Orleans

The Association of American Law Schools’ annual meeting will be in New Orleans Jan. 6-10, 2010.

In 2010, we will be meeting in New Orleans for the first time since Hurricane Katrina forced the relocation of our 2006 Annual Meeting.  During my Presidential year, I am adopting the theme of “Transformative Law,” mindful of the symbolic significance of our return there as well as of the successes and failures of the legal profession in addressing this perilous past decade.  Our meeting this year takes place at a time of crisis in our economy, our ecology, and our international standing as the leader of the free world.  Many lawyers (including our President, Vice-President, and many Cabinet officials and congressional leaders) must tackle these challenges.  Media coverage of their efforts, however, portrays these public servants as people who happen to be lawyers, not as lawyers whose leadership grows out of their mastery of law and whose accomplishments represent the pinnacle of their professional pursuits.   To a significant degree, the news accounts reflect the fact that these leaders have not pursued a traditional law firm practice but instead have devoted themselves to government and public service.  The image of the citizen-lawyer, whose training can be used to advance the common good, has so thoroughly disappeared from the popular imagination that those who pursue this path are no longer centrally defined as lawyers. . . .

Rachel Moran, AALS President