Most Reverend Bishop Dewane Celebrating Red Mass on our campus. 

Hello Friends,
It was an honor to host our first Red Mass on campus celebrated by the Most Reverend Frank Dewane, Bishop of the Diocese of Venice. Thank you, Bishop Dewane, for leading us in this special service. Your homily was something special we will take with us to remember always.

The month of October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and we took the initiative on campus, led by our Student Bar Association, to share information and bring awareness to the forefront in our community by wearing pink each Wednesday of the month in solidarity. Every little bit counts towards preventing and fighting this disease.
It's that time of year again when our Admissions team is traveling across the country meeting with prospective law students. We're actively recruiting for the entering class of 2018. If you know anyone considering law school, please reach out to us.
I would like to say a special thank you to our Black Law Student Association who worked tirelessly to assist the Naples Boys and Girls Club replenish many books and learning aids that were lost due to the Hurricane Irma. 
God Bless you and your families. I'll see you next month as we begin to prepare for the holiday season.

Kevin Cieply
President and Dean
For more information on Ave Maria School of Law news and events, visit our website . 
Red Mass

On Tuesday, October 24, we celebrated our first-ever Red Mass on campus lead by Most Reverend Frank J. Dewane, Bishop of the Diocese of Venice. I would like to send a special thank you to Bishop Dewane for taking the time to share his wonderful sentiments with our student body and Ave Law community who were in attendance.

A Red Mass is a Mass celebrated in the Catholic Church for judges, lawyers, law school professors, law students, and government officials.

Thank you to the St. Thomas More Society for hosting this occasion, and to our Chaplain Monsignor McGrath, for always being our school leader in Christ. 

Professor Brian Scarnecchia with Bishop Dewane
Monsignor McGrath, Bishop Dewane, Richard Varadan '20, 
Tylan Ricketts '18

Ave Goes Pink

In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month,  the Ave Law community  continued the annual tradition of wearing pink every Wednesday as a reminder to all of us, keeping awareness at the forefront.

Thank you to our Student Bar Association, along with our other student organizations, for sharing pertinent facts each week, hosting raffles, bake sales and events.

Silent Angels
We are pleased to announce that the Black Law Student's Association was able to donate 460 books, and 26 other learning aids to Naples Boys and Girls Club. As always, I am extremely proud of our school community. Along with the direct donations collected at Ave Law, the students helped to expand the book drive by getting K for Kids, a Foundation in Naples, involved and a high school in Kansas City. Between our three organizations the Boys and Girls Club should be able to replenish much of their loss. 

On the Road

Our Admissions Team has been traveling the country this Fall season meeting with prospective law students.  They've had nothing but great things to say about their experiences, and will continue on the road leading up to the holiday season.

"On the Road with Ave Law Admissions" is a Facebook campaign where readers are following along to see the locations where our Admissions team is stationed each week.
#avelawontheroad  #avelawwashere

The Admissions team (front to back on the bus: Claire, Naomi, Juanita & Tabitha) are on the road this Fall traveling across the U.S.

Claire O'Keefe, Associate Dean of Admissions and Student Engagement
Naomi Hatton, Associate Director of Admissions and Student Engagement
Juanita Martinez, Admissions Counselor-Enrollment 
Tabitha Canalda, Associate Director of Admissions and Veteran Outreach

Food for Thought from our Dean of Admissions, Claire O'Keefe

Dean Cieply, Tabitha Canalda, Dean O'Keefe

"I think our ideal candidate is someone who is driven to pursue a legal career as a something more than a job, but instead a calling to help others and to make the world a better place. We are a good fit for someone who excels in a close-knit environment and appreciates the support and encouragement that a small school can offer."

"I am always impressed with applicants who have given of their time to help others, as I think it says a lot about them. Given our profession and our mission, I am always struck by those willing to give back."
If you know of any students considering law school, please reach out to Admissions: 239-687-5420 or You may also always contact me directly at

In the Spotlight: Staff Member Volunteers Her Time

Monica Rengifo is the Assistant Director of IT and Full Stack Developer (a fancy term meaning she handles front and back end web applications). Monica is liked by everyone at the law school and she was awarded the first-ever Dean's Excellence Award, an acknowledgement of her hard work and professionalism on a day-to-day basis. In Monica's spare time, which we can imagine is very limited, she volunteers on campus, most recently assisting the Human Trafficking Clinic. 

 Q: You have been volunteering your time with Professor Elizabeth Donovan and her Human Trafficking Clinic. How did you first get involved?
A:  If I remember correctly, I replied to an email that was sent out to staff asking if anyone spoke any languages other than English and if we were interested in volunteering in translation services to assist the students in communicating with the non-English speaking clients who come into the Clinic for legal services.

Q: What do your duties entail with the clinic? How would you describe a typical session?
A:  I have several duties; sometimes I am asked to interpret for a client over the phone or via Skype for an initial interview or a follow up call. Other times the clients come into the clinic to sign documents and I help translate the documents. I also assist with role play in the classroom. In the role play I am asked to follow a script that depicts a situation where the non-English speaking client is in an interview with the student. This helps the students prepare for real life interview.

Q: You have been on staff at Ave Maria School of Law for four years now. What do you like best about being a part of the Ave Law community?
A:  I really enjoy the people I come in contact with every day. Ave Maria School of Law is a wonderful work family with plenty of opportunities. 

Prepping for Life After Law School
Our Career Services team organized a mock interview session on campus for current students interested in practicing their skills prepping them for securing a job upon graduation from law school. I would like to thank our outside counsel for mentoring our students and for our Career Services team for organizing this type of service.

Faculty In the News

A Discussion of Labor Law
Professor John Raudabaugh, Reed Larson Professor of Labor Law, was a featured speaker at the 25th Annual Bernard Gottfried Memorial Labor Law Symposium in Detroit. He presented on " National Labor Resurrection Act, National Labor Repression Act, or National Work Relations Act...Is it time for a new deal?  Perspectives on Labor Law and Reform."
Professor Raudabaugh was also quoted recently in a Labor Law report, "Will GOP Labor Board Use Rules to Trump Obama-Era Policies?"


The Book that Keeps on Giving

Professor Jane Adolphe speaks on her passion project here.
The Persecution of Christians was recently launched in Australia at the Second Annual Religious Freedom Conference organized by the University of Notre Dame Australia's School of Law at Sydney. The Honorable Justice Francois Kunc gave rave reviews of the book in his speech during this conference. 

Congratulations to you for your fine work, Professor Adolphe. 

Tirelessly Supporting A Cause 

Professor Elizabeth Donovan, Director of the Ave Law Human Trafficking Law Clinic, held a Guardian Ad Litem training for approximately 30 attendees here on campus in our Veterans Memorial Law Library.

Guardian Ad Litem's are in a unique position to identify and help child victims of human trafficking. This training shares an overview of how to understand what human trafficking is, the risk factors and recruiting methods that make children especially vulnerable, and how to identify, support, and advocate for children who may be victims of this heinous crime.

In her Human Trafficking Law Clinic, Professor Donovan represents survivors of sex trafficking, labor trafficking, and other violent crimes. She regularly speaks on the topic of human trafficking with academics, lawyers, social service providers, law enforcement, health care providers, and other groups. Professor Donovan also engages in community outreach and training. Before joining the Law School in 2000, she practiced law at the Detroit office of Dykema Gossett.

The Florida Department of Children and Families counted nearly 1,900 reports of human trafficking statewide in 2016, a 54 percent increase from the previous year.

November 9, 11:30 am - 1:00pm: The law school's Clinical Program will host an Open House for students to learn about the Clinics. The event is titled: "Real Clients. Real Cases. Right Here at the Law School: Have You Thought About a Clinic?" 

November 16: Professor Donovan will provide a training to Immokalee and Naples staff of The Shelter for Abused Women and Children. (closed to the public)

November 18, 9:00 am - 11:00 am: Professor Donovan is hosting a volunteer Meet-and-Greet for the Southwest Florida Regional Trafficking Coalition here on our law school campus. She's expecting between 30 and 35 attendees.

'Tis the Season
The warmth of the holiday season is around the corner and our 5th Annual Thanksgiving Food Drive is underway.  This is an opportunity to be involved by exemplifying a key part of our school's mission - to serve the common good and build our community.
Ave Law's selfless Library Team will be collecting canned goods and other food items to donate to Catholic Charities, who will in turn distribute the items to those in need in our community.  If participating, we kindly ask that you drop off items at the library from now until November 16, 2017. Boxes will be placed in front of the Circulation Desk.
If you have any questions, please contact Ulysses Jaen (, Rebekah Miller (  ), or Alla Sullivant ( for more information.


A Welcome Return

This Friday, November 3, we will have the pleasure of hosting award-winning New York Times international investigative Edwin Black on our campus for a return engagement. Mr. Black will have a discussion on a special topic:  Israel and International Law--The Historical Underpinnings on the 100th Anniversary of the Balfour Declaration. A Balfour 100 proclamation will be signed on location.
With more than a million books in print, Mr. Black's work focuses on human rights, genocide and hate, corporate criminality and corruption, governmental misconduct, academic fraud, philanthropic abuse, oil addiction, alternative energy and historical investigation.
The discussion will take place on our campus, St. Thomas More Commons, at 12:15 pm. Lunch will be served. If you are interested in attending, please RSVP to Amber Richards, Coordinator of Special Events, at , 239.687.5341. Limited seating and RSVP is required. 

 2018 Signature Event Speaker: Newt Gingrich

We're thrilled to host The Honorable Newt Gingrich as our 2018 Signature Event speaker. We're looking forward to welcoming Speaker Gingrich to Naples to present to our Ave Law community on Saturday, February 17, 2018. Please visit the event website for more event details and online ticket sales are open!  

I would like to thank our generous sponsors: Ave Maria Mutual Funds   is our Presenting Sponsor. Gulfshore Life  and Naples Daily News  are our Media Spons ors. A special thank you to Cohen & Grigsby for representing Ave Law and being a supportive sponsor. 

For more information, please contact Donna Anthus (239) 687-5403 or

Honoring Our Vets
Please join us on December 7, 2017 for our Second Annual Veterans Memorial Celebration honoring our nation's veterans, on Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day.

Date: December 7, 2017
Start time: 5:00 pm
Location: Ave Maria School of Law Campus, 1025 Commons Circle, Naples,  FL 34119
Ceremony at the Veterans Memorial Law Library and Dinner Reception at St. Thomas More Commons 
Ave Law will be awarding the first Annual St. Martin of Tours, Patron Saint of Veterans & Soldiers, Hero Award.  
Master of Ceremonies: Major General J. T. (Mike) Coyne, United States Marine Corps (Retired) 
Guest Speaker: Lieutenant General Richard F. Natonski, United States Marine Corps (Retired)
Special guests: Ladies for Liberty Singing Troupe
RSVP required, Limited Seating---The event is for the Ave Law community, benefactors, friends, veterans and their families.
RSVP to Amber Richards, 687-5341

Last year, on December 7, 2016, National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day, the law school dedicated the school's law library to veterans, renaming it the "Ave Maria School of Law Veterans Memorial Law Library." Inside the library, Ave Law created a Veterans Wall of Honor, located immediately inside the library's front doors. As patrons enter the library, they are greeted by depictions of oversized service members in uniform, representing each of the five military branches. Benefactors, faculty, staff, students, and members of the community may purchase plaques to place on the wall with the name of a veteran. It enables family and friends to memorialize and honor their beloved veterans, keeping the memory of loved ones and their service and sacrifice to our nation alive for many years to come.   

"Can You Honor A Veteran?" You are invited to become one of the 100 founding members of the Veterans Memorial Law Library at Ave Maria School of Law by pledging your support of $50,000 in this lasting tribute to honor and remember our nation's veterans. Your donation helps us honor our veterans, provide full scholarships to veterans and ensure that those who fought for us and protected our freedoms are never forgotten. Pledges can be paid in gifts of $5,000 each year for 10 years, or in a few payments. Veterans Wall of Honor plaques to honor your loved one are available with a $2500 donation. 

For more information, please visit: or contact Sharon Sparrow, Leadership Gifts Officer, (239) 687-5344 or .

We've scheduled the next Blood Drive on campus for Monday, March 26, 2018 from 12 noon - 4 PM. This event is sponsored by the Knights of Columbus.

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Editor/Writer: Kristy Kryszczak, Director of Marketing and Communications/Editorial Director 
Dean's Introduction Video: Ed Neebling, Director of AV
Design: Gwen Fredrickson
Photography: Sarah Prosser , Tony Zollo, contributing  community members

Ave Maria School of Law was founded in Ann Arbor, Michigan, in 1999, and in 2009 relocated to Naples, Florida. It is licensed by the Florida Commission for Independent Education, License Number 4007, and is fully accredited by the American Bar Association. A copy of the official registration and financial information may be obtained from the division of consumer services by calling toll-free within the state. Registration does not imply endorsement, approval, or recommendation by the state. 1-800-435-7352.

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