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Dean's Column: Boyd and Bankruptcy Law

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Nevada Lawyer Magazine
“Great students produce great alumni, and I am proud to say that our alumni are leading lawyers at leading bankruptcy firms across the city and state.”
Dean’s Column
The William S. Boyd School of Law has established itself as a national leader in the study of bankruptcy law. This success is primarily due to the work of Professor Nancy Rapoport, the Gordon Silver Professor of Law, who is one of the top bankruptcy scholars in the country and a leader in innovation and reform. Courts and scholars alike regularly cite her many books and articles on bankruptcy. Her writings often focus on the ethical obligations of lawyers, both inside and outside of bankruptcy contexts. Students taking one of the many courses taught by Nancy (e.g., bankruptcy, contracts, professional responsibility) benefit from her experience as a practitioner and her research as a scholar. Nancy is also a leader in working with the bankruptcy bar; she serves as the Vice President for Research and Grants of the American Bankruptcy Institute and was just last year the coreporter on the Final Report of the ABI National Ethics Task Force. The bench benefits from her expertise as well; she has been asked to serve as fee examiner for the courts in several high-profile cases. Nancy’s commitment to the profession and to setting the highest standard for the study of bankruptcy law is a model for our students. Some of Nancy’s most recent scholarship has focused on legal education and its reform. Her blog ( reflects the range of her interests and has been recognized as one of the top business law blogs. Our law school’s longtime partnership with Gordon Silver enables us to attract faculty like Professor Rapoport. She has done so much to make the law school a leader in bankruptcy and an innovator in education. Bankruptcy law is an especially interesting field for our students to explore; a bankruptcy practice allows the attorney to be a generalist in a specialty area of the law. In conversations with Nancy and others, I see how a good bankruptcy lawyer has expertise not only in his own area, but also draws upon tax, family and property law, and a range of other disciplines. The bankruptcy lawyer’s practice transcends traditional boundaries
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between litigation and transactions. This kind of intellectual diversity draws students who are eager to put their skills to the test across fields. Great students produce great alumni, and I am proud to say that our alumni are leading lawyers at leading bankruptcy firms across the city and state. We are always looking for ways to expand our offerings and strengthen our already close connections to the bench and bar. I am delighted that U.S. Bankruptcy Court Judges Mike Nakagawa and Gregg Zive are teaching courses and seminars at Boyd on basic bankruptcy and bankruptcy litigation. Our students have served these and other bankruptcy judges as clerks and externs and, we are told, continually do us proud. Finally, this spring the Boyd School of Law will host the Honorable Lloyd George Bankruptcy Moot Court Competition, a regional competition that prepares teams for the annual Duberstein Bankruptcy Moot Court Competition, one of the largest national appellate competitive forums. We are grateful to the many judges who will take part in this competition, and, in particular, to the Honorable Judge Lloyd D. George, the American Bankruptcy Institute, the Federal Bar Association Bankruptcy Section, the State Bar of Nevada Bankruptcy Section, Armstrong Teasdale and the Carolyn Law Group for supporting this exciting competition at the law school. We look forward to building on these partnerships and forming new ones.
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March 2014 Nevada Lawyer 37

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