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Former Ohio Supreme Court Justice donates papers to UT

Former Ohio Supreme Court Justice and Toledo native Judith Ann Lanzinger recently donated her personal papers to the Ward M. Canaday Center for Special Collections at The University of Toledo.

Lanzinger, who is the only person ever elected to all four levels of Ohio’s judiciary, retired from the state’s highest court in 2016.

Former Ohio Supreme Court Justice and UT law alumna Judith Ann Lanzinger, second from left, recently donated her personal papers to the Ward M. Canaday Center for Special Collections. She posed for a photo with, from left, Lauren White, manuscripts librarian and lecturer; D. Benjamin Barros, dean of the College of Law; and Barbara Floyd, director of the Canaday Center and interim director of University Libraries, who propped up a 2007 portrait of justices from the Supreme Court of Ohio.

During her long career, she also served on the 6th District Court of Appeals, the Lucas County Court of Common Pleas and the Toledo Municipal Court.

The Canaday Center, the special collections department of the UT Libraries, has long collected manuscript materials related to the history of women in northwest Ohio. Noteworthy collections include the papers of educators, politicians and activists such as Linda Furney, Betty Mauk, Betty Morais, Mary Boyle Burns, Ella P. Stewart and Olive Colton. The center recently has begun collaborating with the College of Law to preserve the history of Toledo’s women lawyers and judges.

“We are delighted to help ensure this important history is accessible to future scholars and citizens,” said D. Benjamin Barros, dean of the College of Law.

As part of this collaboration with the College of Law, the center also recently acquired a collection of scrapbooks documenting the career of Geraldine Macelwane, the first woman elected judge of the Toledo Municipal Court (appointed in 1952) and the first woman judge of the Lucas County Common Pleas Court (appointed in 1956). She died in 1974.

“Justice Lanzinger is one of our most distinguished alumni, having notably served at all levels of the Ohio judiciary. We are honored that the University is able to house her papers, which we hope will encourage and inspire others to civic engagement,” Barros said.

The Lanzinger collection contains photographs, awards and research files documenting her judicial career. Of particular note are the former justice’s case notes that provide insight into her thoughts and opinions as they developed during trials.

“This collection will provide a rich source of information on many aspects of Justice Lanzinger’s career,” said Barbara Floyd, director of the Canaday Center and interim director of University Libraries. “We hope to continue to collect and preserve the papers of other women lawyers and judges from this area to add to these collections.”

Lanzinger said, “I am honored that the Ward M. Canaday Center has accepted these documents that represent my 31 years of service at all levels of Ohio’s judiciary. I hope they may be of help in future academic projects at The University of Toledo, my alma mater.”

For more information on the collection, contact Floyd at 419.530.2170.

Ohio Sixth District Court of Appeals to hold oral arguments at UT College of Law March 22

On Wednesday, March 22, UT law students and members of the public will get to experience a morning of appellate court arguments when the Ohio Sixth District Court of Appeals holds oral arguments in the Law Center McQuade Law Auditorium.

Oral arguments at the free, public session will begin at 9 a.m., and the final case will be argued starting at 10:15 a.m.

Presiding over oral arguments will be a panel of three judges from the Ohio Sixth District Court of Appeals: The Hon. Arlene Singer, a 1976, UT law alumna; Thomas J. Osowick, a 1981 UT law alumnus; and Christine E. Mayle. The judges will hear four cases:

• Romstadt v. Garcia, et al. is a personal injury lawsuit in which the plaintiff was injured when hit by a vehicle owned and insured by defendant-appellee but driven by her son. The issue on summary judgment was limited to the question of whether the son had his mother’s permission to drive the vehicle at the time of the accident. Plaintiff now argues that summary judgment was inappropriate because of material inconsistencies in the mother’s deposition testimony and because the question turned on the credibility of the mother’s testimony.

• In State of Ohio v. Whites Landing Fisheries Inc., the defendant-appellee was charged by the state under the Ohio Revised Code and Ohio Administrative Code with three counts of illegally harvesting yellow perch from a part of Lake Erie for which the annual quota was zero. The defendant-appellee alleged in its motion to dismiss that the definition of “Lake Erie yellow perch management units” in the code provision was unconstitutionally void for vagueness. The appeal is from a grant of a motion to dismiss based on the unconstitutionality of a penal provision.

• State of Ohio v. Brandeberry involves a guilty plea and sentencing order for a juvenile prosecuted as an adult for charges of arson and murder. On appeal, the defendant challenges the constitutionality of the mandatory transfer and sentencing provisions that resulted in defendant being prosecuted and sentenced as an adult. The constitutional challenges allege violations of due process and equal protection, as well as ineffective assistance of counsel.

• In State of Ohio v. Greely, the appeal is from a sentencing order after a guilty plea to charges of aggravated burglary and rape. For purposes of sentencing, the court treated the aggravated burglary and rape counts as dissimilar offenses and ordered separate and consecutive sentences. The defendant argues that the court erred in treating the offenses as dissimilar and imposing consecutive sentences.

Experiencing appellate arguments firsthand will be especially helpful for first year UT law students. As part of their Lawyering Skills II course, each law student must research and write an appellate brief and then present an oral argument on behalf of a fictional client.

“The opportunity for students to observe judges and lawyers in a real court session is a valuable learning experience in our oral advocacy curriculum,” said Terrell Allen, UT legal writing professor and director of the College of Law’s legal research, writing and appellate advocacy program. “We appreciate the court’s willingness to provide this useful experience and instruction for our students.”

UT College of Law jumps 12 spots in U.S. News graduate school rankings

The University of Toledo College of Law improved its national ranking by 12 spots in one year.

U.S. News & World Report ranked UT’s law school No. 132 out of 196 schools as part of its 2018 Best Graduate Schools edition. That is up from No. 144 last year.

Indicators that helped this increase include higher selectivity of incoming students, higher employment rate at graduation, and higher employment rate 10 months after graduation.

“I am glad to see that the rankings reflect some of the fundamental improvements that we have made in the past year,” said D. Benjamin Barros, dean of the College of Law. “We significantly increased the entering credentials of our first-year class, and our job placement numbers also moved up. We will continue to work on improving our fundamentals, especially in areas of crucial student outcomes like job placement.”

The UT Judith Herb College of Education also ranked No. 172 out of 256. That is up 18 spots compared to last year’s ranking of No. 190. Contributing factors are higher research expenditure and higher selectivity.

“The Judith Herb College of Education continues to strive to improve the quality of all of our programs,” said Dr. Virginia Keil, interim dean of the college. “This recognition validates the quality of our faculty and the excellence of our students. Our increase in rank mirrors our upturn in graduate-level enrollment, both of which reflects the college’s rising reputation.”

The rankings are based on fall 2016 data.

Since her arrival in July 2015, UT President Sharon L. Gaber has made boosting the University’s national reputation one of her main goals.

“I am proud that the U.S. News rankings reflect the progress being made in the colleges of Law and Education,” Gaber said. “These are important measures that contribute to student success, and a double-digit climb in one year is a significant accomplishment.”

UT scholars to host forum March 16 titled ‘Immigration in the Time of Trump’

The University of Toledo’s fourth post-election forum since President Donald Trump was elected focuses on the topic “Immigration in the Time of Trump: The Executive Orders and Shifting Deportation Priorities.”

The free, public event will take place Thursday, March 16, at 6 p.m. at the West Toledo Public Library, 1320 W. Sylvania Ave.

“Toledo is known for providing a warm welcome to refugees and representing the best of the American values of diversity and inclusion,” said Shelley Cavalieri, UT associate professor of law. “This forum will provide community members a chance to learn from local experts about how the new executive order and the shifting deportation priorities of Trump’s administration will alter the important work we are doing here in our city, and give all citizens a chance to engage in an informed dialogue about how we can continue to make Toledo a place of welcome.”

Additional speakers will be Dr. Joel Voss, UT assistant professor of political science; Eugenio Mollo, managing attorney at Advocates for Basic Legal Equality; and Corine Dehabey, resettlement coordinator for US Together in Toledo.

The event is sponsored by the UT College of Law and the School for Interdisciplinary Studies in the UT College of Arts and Letters.

Bankruptcy for troubled cities, states topic of Stranahan National Issues Forum

In the past several years, many of the largest U.S. cities and states have faced financial crises that have caused them to consider declaring bankruptcy. The city of Detroit declared bankruptcy in 2013, while Puerto Rico, a U.S. territory with a current debt of $70 billion, has no access to this remedy.

David A. Skeel, the S. Samuel Arsht Professor of Corporate Law at the University of Pennsylvania Law School, will address municipal and state bankruptcy as well as its causes and solutions, as part of the UT College of Law’s Stranahan National Issues Forum. His lecture titled “When is Bankruptcy the Answer for Troubled Cities and States?” will be held Thursday, March 16, at noon in the Law Center McQuade Law Auditorium.

Skeel

Skeel will identify the extent of governmental indebtedness and its many causes. He then will explain current avenues — and obstacles — within the bankruptcy code for municipal and state bankruptcy, drawing upon his experience as one of five members of the federally appointed board overseeing Puerto Rico’s debt crisis.

“Professor Skeel is one of the nation’s leading experts on bankruptcy having written, among many other pieces of scholarship, the definitive history of bankruptcy law in the United States,” UT Law Professor Lee J. Strang said. “We’re delighted Professor Skeel is delivering this spring’s Stranahan Lecture because he will shed light on not just the Detroit bankruptcy, but also other potential municipal and state bankruptcies. Professor Skeel’s lecture is sure to spark debate and conversation.”

A scholar and prolific writer, Skeel’s expertise lies in the areas of corporate law, bankruptcy, and religion and the law. In addition to numerous articles, he has published four books: “True Paradox: How Christianity Makes Sense of Our Complex World” (InterVarsity, 2014); “The New Financial Deal: Understanding the Dodd-Frank Act and Its (Unintended) Consequences” (Wiley, 2011); “Icarus in the Boardroom” (Oxford, 2005); and “Debt’s Dominion: A History of Bankruptcy Law in America” (Princeton, 2001). He also has frequently appeared in the press with commentaries appearing in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and The Weekly Standard.

The free, public lecture is a part of the Stranahan National Issues Forum and is sponsored by the UT College of Law and its chapter of the Federalist Society for Law and Public Policy Studies.

UT scholars to host forum Feb. 13 titled ‘Our Bodies, Ourselves in the Time of Trump’

The University of Toledo’s third post-election forum since President Donald Trump was elected focuses on the topic “Our Bodies, Ourselves in the Time of Trump” and implications of repealing the Affordable Care Act.

The free, public event to discuss health care, reproductive rights and LGBTQA+ issues will be held Monday, Feb. 13, at 6 p.m. at the Kent Branch Library, 3101 Collingwood Blvd.

“Based on actions thus far and the 2016 presidential campaign, we know the Trump administration will be approaching all three of these areas of policy with a different perspective from the previous administration,” said Dr. Ally Day, assistant professor in the UT Disability Studies Program. “Our forum is designed to address changes and questions community members may have in relation to larger policy and their own health-care options.”

Featured speakers will include:

• Dr. Karen Hoblet, UT associate professor of nursing;

• Robert Salem, UT clinical professor of law and chair of the Equality Toledo Board of Directors;

• Anita Rios, Ohio NOW;

• Hillary Gyuras, community education manager for Planned Parenthood of Greater Ohio;

• Sarah Inskeep, regional field manager for Planned Parenthood Advocates of Ohio; and

• Katie Hunt Thomas, disability rights attorney for the Ability Center of Greater Toledo.

The event is sponsored by the UT College of Law and the School for Interdisciplinary Studies in the College of Arts and Letters.

UT scholars to host forum Jan. 31 titled ‘A Law and Order Presidency? Issues in Policing and Criminal Justice’

The University of Toledo’s second post-election forum since President Donald Trump became the country’s 45th president will feature a panel of scholars focusing on the topic of “A Law and Order Presidency? Issues in Policing and Criminal Justice.”

political-forumThe free, public event will be held Tuesday, Jan. 31, at 6 p.m. at the West Toledo Branch Library, 1320 West Sylvania Ave.

“We invite all concerned members of our community to join us for a public discussion about critical issues and questions pertaining to law enforcement, the terms on which we adjudicate crime and punishment, how we think about rights, and how we might aspire to justice,” Dr. Rene Heberle, professor of political science, said.

Heberle will discuss “Undoing Mass Incarceration in the Trump Era: What Is to Be Done?”

Additional speakers and topics will include:

• Jelani Jefferson Exum, UT professor of law, “What May Change? The Influence of the Attorney General on Criminal Justice Protections and Priorities.”

• Dr. Liat Ben-Moshe, UT assistant professor of disability studies, “Not in Our Name: Disability, Mental Health and Criminal Justice Reform.”

• Gregory Gilchrist, UT associate professor of law, “Federal Influences on Local Policing.”

“Criminal justice and policing reforms have been at the forefront of political and policy activity at the federal level, in statehouses, in communities and in the streets for the last several years,” Heberle said. “Faculty from various disciplines will offer perspectives on the kind of influence the federal government has had on reform efforts over the past several years. More importantly, we will discuss prospects for continuing reform given the fundamental shifts in ideological perspectives and priorities signaled by the new administration taking shape under President Donald Trump.”

The event is sponsored by the UT College of Law and the UT School for Interdisciplinary Studies in the College of Arts and Letters.

800-pound, interactive periodic table at UT inspires living science

It’s the first of its kind at a university or museum in Ohio and Michigan and possibly the only life-size periodic table in the world built and filled by a community.

The 800-pound, interactive periodic table bolted to the wall inside the main entrance to The University of Toledo’s Wolfe Hall features 118 LED-illuminated glass boxes.

“Living Science: The Ever-Changing Periodic Table” is located in the main entrance of Wolfe Hall.

“Living Science: The Ever-Changing Periodic Table” is located in the main entrance of Wolfe Hall.

Each box represents an element, and members of the community are invited to fill the boxes with examples of how each element relates to everyday life and current events.

The display features touch-screen technology that allows visitors to explore a variety of apps that share stories and videos about the elements, contents of the element boxes, and who donated the items for each element.

The display titled “Living Science: The Ever-Changing Periodic Table” was funded by a $31,465 grant from UT’s Women & Philanthropy, a collaborative effort of area women and the University’s Division of Advancement that supports institutional initiatives.

“You’ll be surprised how you can relate to the periodic table,” said Dr. Kristin Kirschbaum, director of the UT Instrumentation Center, who worked for five years to bring this project to life. “This unique display is so inspiring — both visually and educationally — for anyone who walks through the doors. We want the whole community — not only chemists — to participate in filling it in.”

Kirschbaum

Kirschbaum

As part of the grant for the project, Kirschbaum can reimburse donors up to $50 for an item.

“Through all of my research, this is the first and only community-built periodic table in the world,” Kirschbaum said. “We didn’t buy it pre-made with elements already inside. A local carpenter built this from scratch, and we are asking the public to help fill it up. We also will be able to regularly change the items in the boxes.”

Eight-year-old Destiny Zamora furnished the element box labeled “Au” with a gold-plated coin minted to celebrate the 100th year of Mexico’s independence, a gold medal, and a picture of Scrooge McDuck diving into his money vault.

“I chose gold because it’s my favorite color, and I want to be rich someday,” said the second-grader at Napoleon Elementary School whose father’s fiancee works in the College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics. “Did you know Olympic gold medals only contain 1.34 percent of gold?”

Alyson Lautar, a UT student studying pharmacy, donated a smoke detector to represent americium, which is made in nuclear reactors and was first produced in 1945 as part of the Manhattan Project. The symbol for the element on the periodic table is Am.

“Americium-241 is a vital ingredient in ionization-style smoke alarms, which are inside homes and help save lives in the event of a fire,” Lautar said. “A tiny piece of the radioactive americium can detect smoke. When americium-241 decays, it releases positively charged alpha particles. The alarm has two ionization chambers — one is closed to everything but the alpha particles, while the other is open to the air. Normally, these two ionization chambers would receive the same amount of positive charge, but if a small amount of smoke gets into the open chamber, the balance of charge between the chambers is thrown off and triggers the alarm.”

Destiny Zamora, 8, pointed to the gold element box, which she filled.

Destiny Zamora, 8, pointed to the gold element box, which she filled.

Dr. Steven Toth, a lecturer and lead expert at the University of Michigan in Flint who earned his bachelor’s degree and PhD in chemistry from UT, is donating a bottle of Flint water for the box representing lead to help teach about the city’s recent water crisis. The symbol for lead is Pb.

“Lead used to be thought of as a ‘wonder’ chemical. It doesn’t store heat for nearly as long as other metals and has fast-drying powers, so it was used in pipes, paint and makeup,” Toth said. “We now know that lead can be toxic, and pretty much all products are sold lead-free. However, people in Flint were drinking water with high levels of lead after the city changed the water source in 2014. The city treated the water with chlorine to kill bacteria, and the chlorine started leaching lead out of the older, lead-lined pipes.”

Joe Slater, labor and employment law expert and the Eugene N. Balk Professor of Law and Values in the UT College of Law, designed the radium display that contains an old alarm clock, paint brush, New Haven watch box, black-and-white factory photo, description of legal cases, and program from the play titled “Radium Girls.” Radium’s symbol is Ra on the periodic table.

The display in the radium box was created by Joe Slater, the UT Eugene N. Balk Professor of Law and Values.

The display in the radium box was created by Joe Slater, the UT Eugene N. Balk Professor of Law and Values.

“Women who worked at the factory in New Jersey in 1917 used self-illuminating paint that contained radium to make the dials on the watches, and they were told to lick the brushes to give them a fine point,” Slater said. “Some women got radiation poisoning and sued the company because they had been told the paint was harmless. That was the start of health and safety law in the workplace, a very important part of current American employment law.”

Matt Hafner, the local carpenter who built the massive periodic table in seven weeks, wants to do something for hafnium simply because it’s similar to his last name. Hafnium is Hf on the periodic table.

“While researching hafnium, I discovered it is used in tips of plasma torches,” said Hafner, owner of MDH Construction in Maumee. “I have one of those torches, so I’m considering making a video of how they are used on construction projects.”

Only a small handful of the element boxes contain items. A toy-sized Tin Man from “The Wizard of Oz” stands behind the glass labeled “Sn.”

A radiologist supplied a small bottle of gadodiamide, a gadolinium (Gd) that is used as a contrast agent in MRIs. Gadolinium’s box also contains a CD and the magnetic Pokémon called Magneton as it’s one of the few magnetic elements.

“We’re hoping the community will help us fill the empty element boxes,” Kirschbaum said. “Sparkplugs could be used for iridium (Ir), a tool set or dietary supplement for vanadium (V), dynamite for nitrogen (N). It can be anything from the pure element to something related to it. The possibilities are endless.”

To make a contribution to the periodic table, contact Kirschbaum at kristin.kirschbaum@utoledo.edu or 419.530.7847.

For more information, go to utoledo.edu/nsm/ic/periodictable.html.

UT to host post-election community forum Dec. 1

More than three weeks after Republican Donald Trump defeated Democrat Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential election, a panel of scholars at The University of Toledo will participate in a public forum to analyze the election cycle, its results and what happens next.

The event, which is open to the public and sponsored by the UT College of Law and the School for Interdisciplinary Studies in the College of Arts and Letters, will be held Thursday, Dec. 1, at 7 p.m. in the Law Center McQuade Law Auditorium.

web Post-Election Forum flyer“We want to bring our community together to engage in constructive discussion and debate about the changes underway with Trump’s victory,” Dr. Renee Heberle, professor of political science, said. “Topics will include appointments to the White House advisory staff and cabinet, historical comparisons to past presidential elections, constitutional issues, and feminist perspectives on the campaign and outcome.”

Panelists will include Dr. Jeff Broxmeyer, assistant professor of political science; Dr. Jetsabe Caceres, assistant professor of political science and director of the Global Studies Program; Dr. Sharon Barnes, associate professor of women’s and gender studies; Benjamin Davis, professor of law; and Rebecca Zietlow, the Charles W. Fornoff Professor of Law and Values.

After presentations from panelists, the audience will be invited to ask questions and offer input.

Conference to focus on drinking water challenges in Flint, Toledo and Waukesha

The University of Toledo, whose researchers are on the front lines of the effort to fight algal bloom toxins and pollution in the Great Lakes, will host the 16th annual Great Lakes Water Conference this week at the College of Law.

water conference 2016The public drinking water supply will be the focus of the event titled “Safe Drinking Water: A Tale of Three Cities” Friday, Nov. 4, from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Law Center McQuade Law Auditorium on Main Campus.

The conference will address the diverse drinking water challenges faced by Toledo and Flint, Mich., and Waukesha, Wis. The one-day conference is sponsored by the UT College of Law and its Legal Institute of the Great Lakes.

Flint’s lead-contamination water crisis will be explored by experts, including keynote speaker Todd Flood, special counsel for the Michigan Department of Attorney General and a UT College of Law alumnus, at 8:45 a.m.

At 11 a.m., panelists from the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency, UT College of Medicine and Life Sciences, and Toledo’s Collins Park Water Treatment Plant will discuss the efforts to prevent a recurrence of Toledo’s microcystin contamination that led to a “Do Not Drink” advisory for three days in August 2014.

The third panel at 1:30 p.m. will cover the approval earlier this year of Waukesha’s controversial request to divert Lake Michigan water out of the Great Lakes basin because its groundwater source for public drinking water is contaminated with radium. Panelists will include the mayor of Waukesha and the head of the Chicago-based Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Cities Initiative.

“Safe drinking water is a necessity, but not a given, even in this water-rich region,” said Ken Kilbert, UT professor of law and director of the Legal Institute of the Great Lakes. “This conference will shed light on both the problems and potential solutions.”

For more information on the free, public conference, go to utoledo.edu/law/academics/ligl/conferences.html.

Water quality is a major research focus at UT. With $12.5 million in active grants underway, UT is studying algal blooms, invasive species such as Asian carp and pollutants, and looking for pathways to restore our greatest natural resource for future generations to ensure communities continue to have access to safe drinking water. They’re also studying the public health impact of exposure to Lake Erie algal toxins, such as the impact on a person’s liver.

Researchers and students protect the public drinking water supply for the greater Toledo area throughout summer algal bloom season by conducting water sampling to alert water treatment plant operators of any toxins heading toward the water intake. UT’s 28-foot research vessel enables the University to partner with the city of Toledo and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to monitor the health of the lake and provide real-time data.

The UT Lake Erie Center is a research and educational facility focused on environmental conditions and aquatic resources in Maumee Bay and western Lake Erie as a model for the Great Lakes and aquatic ecosystems worldwide.