25 Washburn Law Alumni Admitted to the U.S. Supreme Court Bar

Photograph: Supreme Court Swearing In

This spring, Washburn Law presented alumni before open court for admittance to the United States Supreme Court Bar for the seventh time.

Twenty-five members of the Washburn Law family were escorted into the courtroom of the United States Supreme Court on April 3, 2017, and were seated near the front. All rose as the Justices entered and the nation's highest court was in session. After a pair of opinions were announced, attorneys and judges from across America were presented to the court for admittance to the Bar of the U.S. Supreme Court.

Washburn Law Dean Thomas J. Romig approached the podium and read the following statement: “Mr. Chief Justice and may it please the court, I move the admission of the following attorneys.” Romig read the names of the 25 who made the trip to Washington, D.C., and Chief Justice John Roberts granted the motion. They recited the oath of the Bar.

Nino Davila, ’91, recalled, “At the Supreme Court in a packed courtroom, when the Dean of Washburn Law in open court calls and offers your name to the Chief Judge and requests that you be admitted as member of the Supreme Court Bar, and you’re standing up beaming with pride, and remembering all the hard work and sacrifice you have endured to be there, what a glorious moment! Priceless!”

At a reception at the Supreme Court following the ceremony, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg presented Romig with a signed copy of the day's opinions and posed for a picture with the group. “It was an awe-inspiring event with Justice Ginsburg greeting our group with one of the written decisions that was read before we were sworn in,” said Elizabeth Oliver, ’09. “The experience of being sworn in at the United States Supreme Court will remain one of the highlights of my legal career. I would highly recommend that alumni take advantage of this program the next time it is available.”

The new admittees and their guests then spent the rest of the day touring D.C. and celebrating with area alumni. "Our Washburn Law alumni trip for the Supreme Court Swearing-in Ceremony was the trip of a lifetime,” said Susan Stanley, ’86. “All of the planned events exceeded my expectations! The only advice I'd have for anyone considering it, is take comfy shoes!"

"We were glad so many alumni, friends, and their family got to be a part of this humbling event that is such an important milestone in their career," Karli Davis, Washburn Law director of alumni relations, said.

Alumni who attended the events included: Lisa Agrimonti, ’96; Vo-Laria Brooks, ’10; Benjamin Burgess, ’72; Bruce Clark, ’79; Stephen Coover, ’80; Nino Davila, ’91; Stephen Fletcher, ’66; Christopher Fletcher, ’92; Randall Foster, ’99; Laura Graham, ’93; Amelia Holmes, ’01; Ken Hope, ’74; Michael Montero, ’96; Roy Mozingo, ’06; Elizabeth Oliver, ’09; Ashley Polston, ’05; Alix Ritter, ’04; John Shoemaker, ’04; Kent Smith, ’66; Susan Stanley, ’86; John Westerhaus, ’12; Matthew Williams, ’13; and Lauren Williams, ’07.

Two additional alumni applied for and received admittance through written motion: John Bird, ’74, and Benjamin Hart, ’06.

Washburn Law’s Director of Admissions Preston Nicholson, who received a JD from the University of Oklahoma in 2007, also attended the event and was sworn in.

Cynthia Heath, an Honorary Life Member of the School of Law Alumni Association Board of Governors, was also admitted. Heath graduated from Washburn University with a degree in History and earned a JD from Washington University School of Law in St. Louis.