Newsroom - July 2013

Twenty-nine summer law associates at eleven Atlanta law firms welcomed the opportunity to critically engage and deeply explore relevant civil rights legal issues on the Anti-Defamation League’s agenda as part of the 12th annual Charles F. Wittenstein Summer Associate Research Program. Representing Parker Hudson: Associates Adam Marlowe and Scott Zweigel with Summer Clerks Nirouz Elhammali, Jordan Seal, Anne Horn and Leah Murphy.

Now in its 12th year, the program is named for Charles F. Wittenstein, who retired as ADL Southern Counsel and Southern Civil Rights Director after working for the ADL for 21 years. His career spanned over three decades of service to the Jewish community. In tribute to their father, his children, David & Lee Wittenstein, Robert & Susan Wittenstein, and Gary & Ruth Musicante, established this program in their father’s name.

The law firms of Alston & Bird; Arnall Golden Gregory; Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz; Bryan Cave; Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton; King & Spalding; McKenna, Long & Aldridge; Parker, Hudson, Rainer & Dobbs; Paul Hastings; Sutherland; and Troutman Sanders participated in the program this year.

Summer associates from each law firm produced a significant research brief on an assigned current civil rights topic that tackles questions concerning both the local and national community. “The pro bono research contributed by these firms and their summer associates is a tremendous help to The Anti-Defamation League Southeast Regional Office. They provide the leg-work to help us do our jobs better,” noted Shelley Rose, Associate Director, who coordinates the program.

The topics were engaging and timely and led to active and lively discussions. Some of the issues the law students were asked to research include: whether public high school cheerleaders can display religious messages at school sporting events; whether zero tolerance policies regarding violence in schools are constitutional; the constitutional challenges to “TRAP” (Targeted Regulation of Abortion Provider”) laws; the constitutional challenges to a current New Jersey law which requires that adoptive parents share the religious faith of the child’s birth parents; whether a store owner can refuse service to a homosexual customer based on religious beliefs; whether school libraries can remove books which discuss homosexuality; whether a jail employee can confiscate an anti-contraception pill from a prisoner because of religious beliefs; and whether yoga programs at public schools should be considered religious programs.

The program concluded with a closing reception at Alston & Bird, where a summer associate from each firm gave a brief presentation on their findings, followed by an open discussion on the issues and questions raised by the topic. ADL Board Member and local attorney Dale Schwartz gave an insightful and motivating keynote address. His words spoke to the life and legacy of his dear friend and colleague, Charles Wittenstein, who passed away earlier this year. He spoke of Mr. Wittenstein’s dedication to the pursuit of justice, which was exemplified by his tireless efforts to secure a posthumous pardon for Leo Frank and his work to sustain the constitutionality of the Georgia anti-mask law.

After Mr. Schwartz’s inspiring speech, Representatives Tom Taylor and Michelle Henson presented the Wittenstein family with a Georgia House Resolution honoring Charles’ extraordinary life. Family members Robert & Susan Wittenstein, Ruth Musicant, Elinor Wittenstein, Adam Wittenstein and Arthur Heyman attended the reception to accept the award.

The Anti-Defamation League, founded in 1913, is the world’s leading organization fighting anti-Semitism through programs and services that counteract hatred, prejudice and bigotry.

Left to Right: Associate, Scott Zweigel with summer clerks, Nirouz Elhammali, Jordan Seal, Anne Horn and Leah Murphy.

Newsroom Photo

Upcoming Events

2/28/2019 - Tracy Field, a healthcare partner in our Atlanta office, will be presenting "Legal and Practical Considerations in Analyzing Potential Overpayments" at the Long Term Care and the Law program for the American Health Lawyers Association in Phoenix, Arizona, on February 28 and March 1.

3/29/2019 - Tracy Field, a healthcare partner in our Atlanta office, will be presenting "Anatomy of an Overpayment Analysis for Providers" at the North Carolina Healthcare Financial Management Association's 2019 Annual Conference in Pine Hurst, North Carolina, on March 29.

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