Congratulations–First-Year Appellate Advocacy Competition participants

Congratulations to the participants in, and the winners of, the Fall 2015 Phelps Dunbar First-Year Appellate Advocacy Competition.  The first-year appellate advocacy competition is the capstone event at the end of Stetson’s R&W II courses.  All R&W II students had completed an appellate brief and presented an oral argument, and the top six students were selected to participate in the competition.  The competition was Tuesday evening in the Wm. Reece Smith Jr. Courtroom, in the Tampa Law Center.

Please join me in congratulating ALL of these students for their hard work and extraordinary performances.  The students were arguing about the balance of First Amendment rights with student safety in a high school.

The judges were very impressed with the students’ preparation, poise, and ability to answer questions.  In fact, in the students’ ten-minute arguments, the judges were averaging between 15 and 20 questions per oralist.  During feedback, the judges explained that they were a “hot” bench because they knew the oralists were ready, and the oralists were told that they were ready to argue in front of real judges.


Best Oralist:                        Kris Galloway
Runner-up Best Oralist:   Diego Pestana

Participants and Round Winners:

Round 1:              Jami Worley (winner) v. Miles Archabal
Round 2:             Diego Pestana (winner) v. Kevin Reali
Round 3:             Trisha Cram v. Kris Galloway (winner)

We would like to thank Phelps Dunbar for sponsoring the competition again this year!  We are extremely grateful for Phelps Dunbar’s continual support of the competition.  The firm has been sponsoring the competition for over ten years.  A very special thank you goes out to the attorneys from Phelps Dunbar who served as judges:  Jade Craig (who also served as the Chief Judge), Jason Stearns, and Robert Stines.

Congratulations to the participants and thank you to Phelps Dunbar and our judges.

Happy Thanksgiving!
Professor Bowman