IAALS Report - A Publication of IAALS, the Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System
Message from Our Executive Director

IAALS continues to be charged with the energy of summer, which has brought with it several exciting developments and opportunities. We have new leadership of our Communications and of Educating Tomorrow's Lawyers. And, speaking of ETL, we will be hosting a timely conference in October about the future of legal education—based on many of the recommendations of the ABA Panel's recent report. We are excited to play a role in this important dialogue and hope that you will be a part of it as well.

Rebecca Love Kourlis, IAALS Executive Director
August 2013

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Justice Sandra Day O’Connor to Deliver 3rd Annual John Paul Stevens Lecture

On September 17, 2013, IAALS and the Byron R. White Center are bringing United States Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor (ret.) to Colorado to deliver the 3rd Annual John Paul Stevens Lecture. The Stevens Lecture brings a well-known jurist to the University of Colorado Law School each year. Registration for this public event is now open.

We are excited to welcome Justice O’Connor back to Colorado, where she will also be spending time with IAALS in her role as Honorary Chair of the O’Connor Advisory Committee for the Quality Judges Initiative.

The ABA Task Force Working Paper on the Future of Legal Education and Our 2nd Annual Conference

The ABA Task Force on the Future of Legal Education released its Working Paper late last week, and from the academy to the profession, people seem to think the Task Force has done a pretty good job.

This is exciting, because the Working Paper cites our Consortium of law schools as a promising example of an initiative that can facilitate change in legal education. And our 2nd Annual Conference focuses on three key highlights from the Working Paper. Click here to find out more about our upcoming conference, Connecting the Academy & the Profession.

New and Familiar Faces to Lead IAALS Communications and Educating Tomorrow’s Lawyers

IAALS is pleased to announce that it is welcoming a new Director of Communications and Marketing and a new Director of its national legal education initiative.

Alli Gerkman took the helm as the first full-time director of Educating Tomorrow’s Lawyers in May. She joined IAALS in 2011 and has served as its Director of Communications since August 2012. Taking her place as Director of Communications and Marketing is Robert Thompson, who comes to IAALS after many years of nonprofit service.

Colorado Civil Access Pilot Project Extended by One Year


The Colorado Civil Access Pilot Project (CAPP) has been extended by one year, now applying to relevant cases filed through December 31, 2014. In an effort to make civil litigation more accessible, CAPP sets forth new rules for pleading, disclosure, discovery, and case management. These rules are being tested in business cases in five Denver metro-area courts.

The project’s extension will provide “more data and a detailed evaluation” and “give the court time to determine whether the rules as piloted achieved the stated goals.” IAALS is conducting the CAPP evaluation at the request of the Colorado Supreme Court, and will issue a public report upon its completion.

How Are Judges Trained in Domestic Relations Matters in Your Jurisdiction?


Adequate training is vital in preparing judicial officers for the challenges of being on the bench, and is especially important for domestic relations matters, given the complicated intersection of law, psychology, social work, and dispute resolution, found in many of these cases. The Honoring Families Initiative is undertaking research on how domestic relations training for judicial officers is provided in states across the country, and we would love to hear from you. If you are interested in sharing how such training is provided in your jurisdiction, please contact

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