Alumni Newsletter | May 2020
Congratulations Class of 2020!
"The Class of 2020 makes me so optimistic for the future of the legal profession. This is a group of enormously talented people." —Dean Erwin Chemerinsky
Although the in-person Class of 2020 graduation scheduled for May 15 was postponed, Berkeley Law's faculty, staff, and students and the graduates' family and friends came together to virtually toast this important milestone. See addresses from students, faculty, and keynote speaker Hon. Edward Chen '79, United States District Court for the Northern District of California, and more content celebrating the Class of 2020 graduates at commencement.law.berkeley.edu .
Pro Bono Power

The 2020 graduates contributed approximately 22,600 hours of pro bono work (the norm among Berkeley Law graduating classes is a still-impressive 19,000). Some of their impactful work included assisting emergency responders with wills, drafting and filing amicus briefs in the Supreme Court on Black Lung Benefits for miners in rural Kentucky, assisting with DACA applications for Berkeley students and members of the Bay Area community, representing refugees and visa applicants around the world seeking resettlement and safety in the U.S., and so much more. View a video celebrating the public interest work of the Class of 2020 here .
Exceptional Clinical Advocacy

Savannah Reid '20, winner of the law school’s annual  Sax Prize for Clinical Advocacy , distinguished herself through her tenacity, teamwork, and extraordinary results in four semesters with the  Policy Advocacy Clinic  and two with the  Death Penalty Clinic . Bill Nguyen ’20 received the Sax Prize Honorable Mention award, and Camila Gonzalez ’20 the Clinical Legal Education Association’s Outstanding Clinical Student Award. Read more about their accomplishments during their time at Berkeley Law.
Commencement Cartoon Caption Contest
Submit your caption, we'll choose three finalists, you vote for your favorite! Finalists will appear on Berkeley Law’s social media channels on May 25 and the winner will be published in the next edition of  Transcript   magazine.

How to Enter:
To enter,  use this form to submit your caption  of 240 characters or less by May 21. To enter using social media, comment on the cartoon posted on Berkeley Law’s Twitter ( here ) or Instagram ( here ) accounts using the hashtag #BerkeleyLawCartoon. One entry per person, please.

Cartoon by Paul Noth .
What's New

Two Berkeley Law clinics—the Policy Advocacy Clinic and the East Bay Community Law Center's Clean Slate Clinic—played key roles in persuading California to stop intercepting tax refunds, garnishing wages, and levying bank accounts to pay fees owed to state and local governments during the COVID-19 pandemic. State Controller Betty Yee suspended the debt collection on March 27 and the policy went into effect immediately, making California the first state to take such a step.
How Will COVID-19 Impact the 2020 Election?

Will in-person voting be drastically deterred by the health risks involved? Will there even be an election in November? Dean Chemerinsky and Professor Bertrall Ross were among five university faculty members who tackled such topics during a recent  Berkeley Conversations: COVID-19 discussion  about how the crisis may impact the election.  Read more and watch the video .
In the News

Berkeley Law faculty frequently publish op-eds and are regularly sought by leading media outlets to provide insight on the pressing legal issues of the day.

Visit the new Media Highlights page to view more recent headlines. Read more recent news from the law school on the News page. And check out the exciting new issue of Berkeley Law's  Transcript  magazine .
Our Community
Legal Issues in Dealing with COVID-19

A weekly faculty lecture series showcases Berkeley Law experts sharing crucial legal expertise related to the coronavirus. Lectures including Dean Chemerinsky, Professor Andrea Roth, and Professors Catherine Fisk '86 and Catherine Albiston '93 are available now on the law school's YouTube page . See upcoming lectures via the events calendar .
EVENTS
All in-person events have been cancelled. But robust digital programming continues. Learn more via the Berkeley Law events calendar .
Members of the classes ending in 0s and 5s, please look for an email with a survey regarding Reunion 2020 . We very much appreciate your feedback.
Save the Date  
JUNE 11, 12-1pm PT: Virtual Town Hall with Dean Chemerinsky
Please join us for a virtual talk with Dean Chemerinsky on civil liberties during a pandemic and the state of the Law School. Invitation and details forthcoming.
Advanced Degree Opportunities for Alumni

This unsettled time may prove to be an ideal moment to build upon your legal expertise or expand into new practice areas by studying for an advanced degree. The Berkeley Law LL.M. program focuses in the areas where the Law School has great strengths, such as intellectual property, environmental law, and business law. All Berkeley Law alumni who are admitted to the 2020-2021 LL.M. program will receive a $5,000 scholarship. If you are interested in applying or have additional questions, email Assistant Dean Susan Whitman at  swhitman@law.berkeley.edu .
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