- 1957: Bruce Buell.
Howard Rosenberg and Legal Aid as practiced by students at D. U. Law were drawing cards for some students deciding on a law school and their legal education long before the Clinical Education Program/Student Law Office were formally organized. In the early '50's I was a Colorado native who had drifted off to Princeton for my A.B., then a mixture of active duty Navy, Harvard Law School and George Washington Law School (night division while serving at the Pentagon), before my final push to get my LLB in Colorado. I had one year of law school still remaining and had decided it would be either at C.U. Law or D. U. Law. I wanted a crack at experiencing serving the underprivileged before graduating. D. U. was located then at Court Place in downtown Denver, and it claimed to have connections and a good relatiionship with Denver Legal Aid. Where better to finish my legal education and fulfill my call to try serving the underprivileged? So I chose D. U. Law School over C. U. Law School. The neat thing about this was that the program was not even an official part of the curriculum, as I recall. It was just two organizations in proximity, working together for the common good. During the school year 1957-58, after serving for some period with Howard Rosenberg, assistant Director of the Legal Aid Office as my mentor, I was convinced that a number of other D. U. Law students were there for the same reasons. We had a wonderful experience, counseling clients and occasionally taking misdemeanors and traffic cases to court. Howard was always there encouraging us and, in his usual understated manner, showing us the importance of "pro bono". It has stuck with me for these last 55 years of law practice. I just hope that those law students who have engaged in the Clinical Education Program over the past several decades have had the meaningful experience of serving the underserved and sitting at the feet of Howard Rosenberg that I had.
- 1973: Stanley Lipkin.
Great memories; great experience. I got called out of class one day by the Dean's office because a judge in Adams County wanted to speak to me. He had found that I was set for a jury trial in his division on a 3 point traffic violation of my client through the student practice program. He wanted me to know that they do not allow jury trials for students on such minor violations. All I could tell the judge was that he had already signed the order granting the jury trial that I had submitted. My client could not take a single point on his license. I went to trial before a jury for a full day which ended in acquittal for my client even though he had surely violated the law. Trouble was that the jury members all knew the intersection and all believed the law was impossible to follow at that location. The judge was duly aggravated but very gracious to me. What a confidence builder to start a career in litigation now in its 40th year. Thanks, D.U.
- 1975: Carol Johnson.
Participating in the clinical education program at DU Law school in the spring quarter of 1975 changed my life. Literally. The program was established between then Dean Yegge and Alaska attorney Robert Goldberg to provide law students to Alaska Native Corporations to help them implement the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act, under which these corporations were formed. The Act was passed by Congress in 1971. Until I went to Alaska, I had planned to stay in Denver and work for a Denver firm where I had been clerking while attending the night division of the Law School. Getting off the plane in Alaska on St. Patrick's Day, 1975, it was love at first sight: mountains, ocean, within minutes. I also received a job offer from the firm I was clerking with in Alaska, which represented one of the ANCSA corporations within two weeks of my arrival. I spent my first month traveling by bush plane out to villages in the corporation's region, landing on rivers and in white out, getting picked up and taken in to the villages by snow machine or dog sled, sitting through village corporation meetings which were conducted in Yupik language. I had my own translator. My nickname was the Kuskokwim Queen, which is the name of the main river in the corporation's region. I returned to Denver to attend graduation and pack my Volkswagen Beetle with my belongings, drove non stop to Seattle and put my car on a barge to Alaska. I have been in Alaska ever since. I spent 12 years with that law firm, and then 21 years as general counsel for Alaska's largest electric utility, before I retired in 2008. My relationships with Alaska natives from that semester continue. I am forever grateful for the opportunity the Clinical Education Program at DU Law School provided me. Prof. Rosenburg is a rock star, and I thank him and congratulate him for his long tenure at DU and what he has created with his program.
- 1977: William (Bill) Brady.
My introduction to the way law should properly be approached came about when taking Professor Rosenburg's "Legal Representation of the Poor" class in my second year in 1975. Howard combined several disciplines into the marvelous casebook and materials authored by the late Professor Eli Jarmel. Rather than a compartmentalized approach, administrative law, constitutional law, creditor-debtor relations, criminal law, several UCC articles, contracts, equity, torts, real property and remedies were incorporated into fascinating fact patterns and case studies requiring a multi-level analytical approach. Howard's passion and enthusiasm, using practical examples and drawing on his experience as a procedural tactician, helped me to "think like a lawyer." Thereafter, I took two other substantive courses from him, continuing to benefit from this same multi-disciplined approach to learning. He also taught me to look for non-legal, non-judicial remedies. Howard served as a supervising mentor in the defender program and student law office, literally touching my shoulder in a sign of support when a misguided judge made an uncalled for, callous remark out of hand at my client's expense. He and I were fighting together for our client in the trenches. For the past 14 years I have taught at DU Law in the Enviro and Natural Resources Law program, where I have tried to emulate Howard's teaching style, never forgetting that my obligation to each student is to keep them engaged, to ignite their passion for learning, and to teach them to argue and advocate by sharing my experience and practical application of the law. Howard, thanks again for everything you have done for me, my family and our students, who will hopefully pass the torch to future generations of learners here and elsewhere.
- 1980: Alan Hendrix.
I was a 3rd year transfer from the University of Dayton when I met Professor Rosenberg at the Law Clinic. He was very supportive, approachable and humble. Sort of the opposite of Kingsfield in The Paper Chase. I had a court appointment in Adams County that I was queasy about, so Professor Rosenberg went along with me. I can’t recall anything about that case, but the ride up was a hoot (in retrospect). I drove. My car was a 1969 Toyota Corolla that leaked coolant into the engine oil and needed a water infusion into its radiator every 40 miles but incredibly still ran. It needed a drink of water on that trip. The door liners had been stapled into place but the sharp ends of the staples stuck through the liners and scratched marks in the sides of your shoes. Don’t lean against it-the gray paint rubs off on you. And the passenger seat was tricky. Professor Rosenberg, in the passenger seat, could not sit back without the seat latch losing its catch and the seat falling flat. Just when he thought he was secure in his seat another bump in the road would send him back flat. This happened well over 20 times as there was no way to avoid it. He let out a little whoop with each surprise. If his early retirement is brought on by back pain, I am to blame. Howard Rosenberg-many great things but more than anything a great guy.
- 1981: Joel Varnell.
I had my first jury trial through the SLO, a traffic infraction case. Professor Bright attended with me. When we got to the courtroom, the bailiff had a handful of accused men waiting to be arraigned before our trial started, in orange jumpsuits and handcuffs, in the jury box. In my naivete, I remarked to Professor Bright that it looked like a pretty tough jury. He laughed hard. Anyway, I won the trial so now I can talk about it and laugh along. The SLO was a first valuable glimpse of the real world of law. It was a very worthwile experience, and helpful to the indigent clients as well.
- 1990: Rich Harris.
The SLO was, without question, my singularly the important and most critical experience that I had at DU. It literally helped launch me into my legal career, and I am eternally grateful to Howard, Peggy, Wadine, and all of the other great teachers I had there. In fact, as I am now in the fortunate position of interviewing DU law students interested in family law, I always tell them to take advantage of this great program that the Law School has to offer.
- 1993: Chris Hardaway.
So, Prof. Wadine Gehrke was sentenced to supervise me for consecutive civil and cirminal law clinics and she taught me more than the rest of law school put together. A masterful mentor and coach, she gave me enough rope to learn how to practice but skillfully prevented me from hanging myself. With Peggy and Howard filling in when she had enough, my year at SLO was priceless. To the poor schlub who had to deal with my 49 page Answer/Counterclaim/Brief to his simple repossession complaint...too bad since you gave me the eye roll. And to the police officer who wrote down "smell of alcohol on his breath" on the arrest report when my client later blew a 0.0: Thanks. (You're responsbile Wadine). The experience was only matched when I came back to supervise a year of domestic violence clinic with six incredibly smart and dedicated students in 2002, from whom I learned more than they did; although I can sympathize with flight instructors' periods of terror and must say there were a couple of shoestring catches that made things interesting. Professor Rosenberg's experience and humor was a constant support for all of us. Thanks for everything Wadine, Peggy and Howard; you changed lives for so many students and clients.
- 2000: Tom Hall.
Professor Rosenberg allowed me to try a bench trial and a jury trial (both criminal cases) while in the SLO. He was always willing to listen to my questions and provide his valuable expertise. When it came time for the trials, he was there, but he sat in the back and allowed me to try the case. He would offer a suggestion if necessary, but he let me be the one to try the case. His encouragement helped me to gain confidence in the courtroom which led to an internship with the City of Wheat Ridge's Prosecutor's Office. There, I tried another jury trial and many bench trials, always falling back on what Professor Rosenberg taught me. I will forever be indebted to him and the SLO for the building blocks to my litigation career.
- 2006: Dan Schoen.
I am a second career lawyer(JD 06), or rather I am a second career public policy advocate who happens to run an organization filled with lawyers. As Executive Director of the Colorado Criminal Defense Bar I have encountered hundreds of lawyers Howard helped shape. As an alum I am proud of the clinical program Howard built, especially at a time when clinical education was held in low regard. The future has proven Howard correct and law schools are rushing to develop something Howard knew more than 50 years ago. Fortunately Howard has built his own enduring monument: The lawyers he trained and the program that trained them.
- 2006: Philip Rosmarin.
I was incredibly fortunate to have Howard as my crim defense clinic supervisor. He was always a steadying force to guide a very unsteady student through the morass. He never stood with me at the podium, but he was always just a few rows behind, whispering advice and encouragement: "Waive factual; don't forget to get the judge to drop DV; get that bond down; where'd you pick up that tie?" He was already way past an ordinary mortal's retirement age, and I wasn't always sure he could hear the judge, but his vast experience and real-world counsel were bottomless gifts to his mentees. I have called him for advice many times since I graduated, and I don't care if he is retiring, I still have his private number and will continue to squeeze the man for his invaluable knowledge. I'm just that kind of sleazebag lawyer.
- 2008: Lucia Lamprey.
I found law school rootless until my semester in the Civil Litigation Clinic. The SLO was a place of calm in the shuffle of lecture classes. Working with clients taught me practical lessons I use to this day. Working with the other student-attorneys in the Office, which held an array of personality types, was a valuable experience, and as luck would have it I was partnered with a thoughtful and skilled student lawyer who shared my sense of humor. When the semester ended, I was sorry to leave the "firm".
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