Widener Law Journal Administrative Board, Volume 24 (2014-2015)

February 24th, 2014 No comments

The Widener Law Journal is proud to announce the Administrative Board for the 2014-2015 academic year.

Editor-in-Chief: Richard Rinaldi

Executive Managing Editor: Johelys Cecala

Internal Managing Editor: Ryan Gonder

Business/External Managing Editor: Olivia Unger

Pennsylvania Law & Symposium Editor: Melissa Toaltoan

Internal Supervising Editors: Elizabeth Decastro & Molly Zarefoss

The Journal is excited to have such a talented and dedicated group to lead the Journal in its 24th year of publishing!

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Widener Law Journal Hosts Annual Spring Symposium

January 27th, 2014 No comments

Monday, April 14, 2014; 8:00 am to 4:00 pm Harrisburg Campus

Bankruptcy and Beyond: Solving the Problem of Municipal Financial Distress


Municipal financial distress is a problem of enormous importance both nationally and in Pennsylvania. Detroit recently filed the largest municipal bankruptcy case in history, 21 cities in Pennsylvania are in Act 47, the Municipalities Financial Recovery Act program, and Harrisburg is on its way to recovery after operating in receivership for over two years. This Symposium, presented by the Widener Law Journal of Widener University School of Law’s Harrisburg Campus, will explore the causes of municipal distress and approaches to alleviating the problem. Reducing existing debt is not enough; policymakers must think creatively about municipal structure, finance, and expenditures. The invited speakers include experts in state and local government law, municipal finance and tax issues, public pensions, and Chapter 9 bankruptcy.  The Symposium will provide a unique opportunity for nationally recognized scholars in a variety of areas related to municipal financial distress to exchange ideas with professionals involved in Harrisburg’s recovery. Six CLE credits will be available for Pennsylvania and Delaware lawyers.


Keynote Speaker: General William Lynch, Receiver for the City of Harrisburg




•Michelle Wilde Anderson, University of California, Berkeley School of Law

•Hon. Thomas Bennett, U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Northern District of Alabama

•Christine Sgarlata Chung, Albany Law School

•Hon. Mary D. France, U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Middle District of Pennsylvania

•Mark Kaufman, McKenna Long & Aldridge LLP

•Juliet M. Moringiello, Widener University School of Law

•Matthew Parlow, Marquette University School of Law

•Randle Pollard, Indiana University Kelley School of Business

•Scott Pryor, Regent University School of Law

•Frank H. Shafroth, George Mason University

•David A. Skeel, University of Pennsylvania School of Law

•David Thornburgh, University of Pennsylvania Fels Institute of Government

•David Unkovic, McNees Wallace & Nurick LLC





Contact: Sandy Graeff ∙ 717 541-3965 ∙ slgraeff@widener.edu

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Widener Law Journal Volume 23 2013-2014 Members

August 6th, 2013 No comments


Widener Law Journal

Volume 23

Administrative Board
Katherine Riggleman-Thomas


Camille Howlett

Executive Managing Editor

Lara Antonuk
Internal Managing Editor

Meredith DeMark
Business/External Managing Editor

Jennifer Robinson
Pennsylvania Law Editor

Mitchell Jones
Symposium Editor

Jerika Cummiskey

Thomas Gallagher

Kate Nixon
Internal Supervising Editors

Senior Staff
Matthew Androsky

Timothy Bishop

Patrick Erne

Philip McCarthy

Nicholas Peters

Andrew Race

Langdon Ramsburg

Survey Staff

Talia Danon

Shane Heberling

Associate Staff

 Kacy Catalano

Johelys Cecala

Martha Decastro

Ryan Gonder

Nikki Harrison

Anthony Holbert

Jordan Marzzacco

Travis Petty

Richard Rinaldi

Melissa Toaltoan

Olivia Unger

Molly Zarefoss

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Widener Law Journal Administrative Board, Volume 23 (2013-2014)

The Widener Law Journal is proud to announce the Administrative Board for the 2013-2014 academic year.

Editor-in-Chief: Katherine Riggleman-Thomas

Executive Managing Editor: Camille Howlett

Internal Managing Editor: Lara Antonuk

Business/External Managing Editor: Meredith DeMark

Symposium Editor: Mitchell Jones

Pennsylvania Law Editor: Jennifer Robinson

Internal Supervising Editors: Thomas Gallagher and Jerika Cummiskey

The Journal is excited to have such a talented and dedicated group to lead the Journal in its 23rd year of publishing!

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Symposium: Perspectives on Mass Tort Litigation

February 21st, 2013 No comments

A Symposium sponsored by Widener Law Journal. April 16, 2013

Pharmaceuticals. Asbestos. BP oil spill. “September 11th.” How does the civil justice system respond when a large number of claims derive from a product or event?

This symposium approaches mass tort litigation from a variety of perspectives. First, a group of nationally renowned legal academics describes and discusses the theories underlying mass tort litigation. Then a panel of practitioners introduces several emerging issues in the practice of mass torts. Next, Pennsylvania-specific civil justice issues, including joint and several liability and venue, are debated. These reforms affect not only mass tort, but more traditional tort litigation as well. One of the original mass tort issues—asbestos—created the widespread problem of bankrupt defendants, and resolving the problem is the subject of the fourth panel. Finally, traditional rules of ethics are applied in the mass torts context.

United States District Judge Eduardo Robreno of the Eastern District of Pennsylvania will deliver the Distinguished Address, “Federal Asbestos Litigation: Black Hole or New Paradigm?” Judge Robreno is the presiding judge of the federal asbestos multidistrict litigation docket, MDL 875, the largest and longest-lasting MDL of all. Judge Robreno’s 2008 appointment as presiding judge led to a significant change in the management of MDL 875.

“Perspectives on Mass Tort Litigation” features a distinguished group of legal academics, practitioners, and judges addressing an increasingly important area of litigation.

Please plan to join us.


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Widener Law Journal Executive Board, Volume 22 (2012-2013)

July 9th, 2012 No comments

The Widener Law Journal is proud to announce the Administrative Board for the 2012-2013 academic year.

Editor-in-Chief: Rachel Hadrick

Executive Managing Editor: Ryan Molitoris

Internal Managing Editor: Meghan McNaughton

Business/External Managing Editor: Kristie Falbo

Symposium Editor: Caitlin Glenn

Pennsylvania Law Editor: Gabor Ovari

Internal Editors: Courtney Hair, Julie Slabinski, Josh Light

The Journal is excited to have such a talented and dedicated group to lead the Journal in its 22nd year of publishing!

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Widener Law Journal 2011-2012 Staff

October 12th, 2011 No comments

The Widener Law Journal is proud to announce the Administrative Board for the 2010-2011 academic year.

Editor-in-Chief: Maria Allegretto

Executive Managing Editor: Kathryn Peters

Internal Managing Editor: Steven Jones

Business/External Managing Editor: Wallace Rejrat

Symposium Editor: Nicole Radziewicz

Pennsylvania Law Editor: Jordan Spahr

Internal Editors: Joel Patch, Jesika Pufnock, Maeve Scanlon

The Journal is excited to have such a talented and dedicated group to lead the Journal in its 21st year of publishing!

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February Symposium

October 12th, 2011 No comments

“[N]or shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation,” states the Fifth Amendment’s Just Compensation Clause. This Clause constitutes an important limitation on government power. Its exact scope, however, remains a topic of great debate. For example, the meaning of the phrase “public use” was at the heart of Kelo v. City of New London, 545 U.S. 469 (2005), where the Supreme Court of the United States controversially allowed the transfer of property from one person to another in the pursuit of “economic development.”
Another deeply contentious issue is deciding what kind of government actions fall under the scope of the Just Compensation Clause. Exercises of the power of eminent domain such as those involved in Kelo have always been understood to be canvassed within the Clause. In contrast, courts have long struggled with the issues of whether and when an exercise of a state’s regulatory police power might violate the Fifth Amendment’s takings protections.
Stop the Beach Renourishment v. Florida Department of Environmental Protection, 130 S. Ct. 2592 (2010), another recent Supreme Court decision, added a new layer of controversy Stop the Beach presented an issue that had previously been an obscure academic one: when, if ever, can an action by the state’s judiciary be an unconstitutional taking of private property? Recent Supreme Court precedent has established that some changes in property law made by the executive or legislature could be unconstitutional takings. Would the result be the same if the judiciary made the change instead?
By simply considering the issue, the Supreme Court made judicial takings a constitutional law hot topic. The way the Justices delivered fragmented opinions in Stop the Beach made the issue even more interesting. While the Justices agreed that no taking had occurred, they were deeply divided in their reasoning. No opinion commanded a majority of the Supreme Court on any of the open issues. The Supreme Court therefore dramatically raised the profile of judicial takings while leaving all of the important constitutional issues unresolved.
Due to its importance and status as a hot legal topic, the issue of judicial takings will be the focus of this year’s Widener Law Journal Symposium. The symposium will be organized by Professor Barros, a recognized expert in takings law, and Nicole Radziewicz, the Journal’s Symposium Editor, along with other members of the Journal’s Administrative Board. The Journal anticipates hosting the event, which will include presentations by many distinguished authorities on the topic of takings law, in February.

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Symposium: The Contribution of the Commonwealth Court to Pennsylvania Jurisprudence Since 1970

February 25th, 2011 No comments

On Thursday, February 17th, the Widener Law Journal, in connection with the Widener Law and Government Institute, hosted a symposium entitled “The Contribution of the Commonwealth Court to Pennsylvania Jurisprudence Since 1970.”

Following a short welcome, the program opened with a look at the Origins and Jurisdiction of the Court by C. Grainger Bowman, esq., the nephew of the Commonwealth Court’s first President Judge, James S. Bowman. C. Grainger Bowman also served as a law clerk for Judge Bowman from 1973 to 1974, and he currently serves as the Treasurer of the Commonwealth Court Historical Society. Kristen Brown, the Commonwealth Court’s Prothonotary, also spoke about her personal experiences with the court over her years of service. Throughout the day, the speakers looked at specific areas of Pennsylvania law where the Commonwealth Court’s decisions have had a significant impact, ranging from procedural due process to labor law, prisoner litigation, environmental law, and public utility law. Speakers included local attorneys, elected officials, and current and former Commonwealth Court judges. Several speakers also wrote articles for the Widener Law Journal’s symposium issue. Read more about the symposium here.

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Legislative Reapportionment

February 25th, 2011 No comments

On January 26, 2011, the Legislative Reapportionment Committee, chaired by John Gedid, Esq., conducted hearings at Widener’s Harrisburg campus pertaining to addressing issues with past redistricting and considering the possibility of an amendment to the Pennsylvania Constitution. After the invited speakers gave presentations, audience members were offered a chance to briefly address the Committee. The first person to speak was Joseph Holaska, a 3RD student and an Internal Editor for the Widener Law Journal. Joseph recently completed a Directed Research paper with Widener Law Journal Faculty Advisor Michael Dimino recommending potential changes to the Pennsylvania Constitution to address redistricting issues. He summarized his paper’s conclusions to the committee, suggesting that they look at certain other states’ practices for guidance. After he spoke, Gedid requested that he make his paper available to the Committee for their review.