Flowers to Bloom in New/Old Advocacy Role
From director of the Center for Excellence in Elder Law to interim director of the Center for Excellence in Advocacy, where she had been in the past. That’s the path Roberta Kemp Flowers, J.D., has taken, as recently announced by Stetson University College of Law.
Flowers, a professor of law, began her new/old role June 1. In turn, Rebecca C. Morgan, J.D., Boston Asset Management chair in elder law, will fulfill the duties of the interim director for the Center for Excellence in Elder Law.
“I look forward to having Roberta’s guidance and experience at the helm again,” commented Stetson President Wendy B. Libby, Ph.D. “She set the stage for the Center for Excellence in Advocacy, creating a foundation of knowledge and curriculum and building a tradition of excellence that continues today.”
Flowers was the Center for Excellence in Advocacy’s director when the program began in the early 2000s, and she later became director of the Center for Excellence in Elder Law. Returning to her previous role will be a homecoming, allowing her to create a shared vision with others in the advocacy community at Stetson Law while also educating a new generation about effective advocacy.
Stetson Law is committed to the concept of the complete advocate — one who commands a superior understanding of the law, is able to persuasively present evidence and has the humanity to know when to do what is right and just.
Notably, Stetson Law is ranked the No.1 for trial advocacy by U.S. News & World Report— for the 21sttime in the past 25 years.
“My biggest goal this year is to bring all of the different pieces of advocacy at Stetson Law together,” Flowers said. “So many different members of the Stetson community are involved in advocacy. It will be a great opportunity for us to discuss how we can work together to improve a student’s education and our national influence in the advocacy arena.”
Advocacy on Stage
Stetson Law’s legacy of advocacy excellence was on full display during its Commencement ceremony May 18, as Dean Emeritus and Professor of Law Bruce Jacob ’59 served as the keynote graduation speaker.
Jacob was one of the first public defenders in the state of Florida. He represented the respondent in the landmark Gideon v. Wainwright decision in 1963, concerning the right to a fair trial. Jacob then spent the next 50 years handling cases for indigent clients.
While serving as a faculty member at Emory University School of Law, he established the Legal Assistance for Inmates Program. In 1969, he won the case for the petitioner in Kaufman v. United States. While studying at Harvard Law School, Jacob helped start the Harvard Prison Legal Assistance Project. Through the Community Legal Assistance Office in Cambridge, Massachusetts, he supervised law students defending criminal cases and representing indigent people.
In addition, Jacob fought for the rights of the indigent throughout his teaching career, where he has taught 20 different law school courses over more than 50 years. A member of Stetson Law’s Hall of Fame, he served for 13 years as dean and two decades as a professor at Stetson Law.