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Global Outreach Committee


The International Committee has three core missions:

1)      Develop and Sustain Strong International Partnerships

SEALS is historically and still primarily focused on law schools in the Southeastern United States. However, we recognize that building good relationships with colleagues around the world is a worthy and important goal. We seek to encourage and facilitate participation in SEALS by law faculty who live and work beyond the U.S. borders.

2)     Encourage global & comparative perspectives on the law and legal education

While international and comparative law are core pillars of legal practice and legal education in most of the world, they has not attained such prominence in the United States.  The A.B.A. has recognized this as an area for improvement and this committee agrees.   We will propose programs, panels and events that prioritize a more global focus and/or comparative analysis.

3)     Provide international opportunities for SEALS members

This committee is very proud of the professors at our member schools and wants to showcase them to the world.  Our goal is to seek out international publication, speaking and teaching opportunities and publish these to the member schools.

Committee Members

  • Patrick Hugg (Loyola New Orleans) (Co-Chair),
  • Greg Bowman (Roger Williams) (Co-Chair)
  • Nadia Ahmad (Barry)
  • Lisa Avalos (Louisiana State)
  • Jennifer Bard (Florida)
  • Todd Berger (Syracuse)
  • William Araiza (Brooklyn)
  • Robert Blitt (Tennessee)
  • Fernando Colon-Navarro (Thurgood Marshall)
  • Kevin Govern (Ave Maria)
  • Vaughn James (Texas Tech)
  • Christopher Kelley (Arkansas)
  • Richard Meyer (Mississippi College) (GLEAC Committee Liaison)
  • Jorge Ramirez (Texas Tech University School of Law)
  • Melanie Reid (Lincoln Memorial)
  • Marc Roark (Southern)
  • Matthew Steffey (Mississippi College)
  • Constance Wagner (St. Louis)
  • Del Wright (University of Missouri, Kansas City)

2021 Annual Report

A year of Covid restrictions continued, yet expanding international relationships.

Time to re-load.

Submitted by Committee co-chairs Greg Bowman, Dean, Roger Williams University Law School, and Patrick Hugg, Professor Emeritus, Loyola University New Orleans College of Law. Special thanks to SEALS Executive Director, Professor Russ Weaver, for active support of this committee and his recruiting of many of the international speakers.

The past year was marked by Covid shutdowns, massive retreats to Zoom, and a dynamic virtual SEALS international representation at the Annual Conference.  We have witnessed growing collaboration with international colleagues in many dimensions, and especially with our colleagues in the ELPIS and ELFA groups, as evidenced by their contributions to the 2020 Annual Conference.

Even more international collaboration is scheduled for the coming 2021 Annual Conference this July/August at Avery Island.  Most of us will be together happily live and in-person, though due to the strict global restrictions, most international participants will be with us virtually, though no less enthusiastically.

At this year’s conference, twenty-two international scholars will participate online, from law faculties in ten countries, Brazil, Bulgaria, France, Germany; Hungary, Italy, Poland, Russia, Spain, and the UK.

They will be joined in the multiple panels listed below by twenty-six colleagues from U.S. law schools.  We are pleased at this outpouring of interest and participation.

Especially noteworthy this year are the ELPIS and ELFA panels on Covid era law teaching and scholarship, as well as broad based discussions on academic freedom in today’s political/social environment and the emerging use of team-based learning in teaching law today.

Other panels and workshops, not specifically organized by the Global Outreach Committee, will also contribute to the international, global outreach dimension at the 2021 SEALS Conference. See Exhibit 1 at the end of this Appendix A.

2020 Annual Report

Special thanks to SEALS Executive Director, Professor Russ Weaver, for active support of this committee and his recruiting of many of the international speakers.

It has been a year of exciting expanding relationships. The past 12 months have been marked by dynamic expansion of the committee’s global outreach, yet frustrated by the Covid 19 cancellation of our physical meeting in Fort Lauderdale. To have so many international scholars join SEALS colleagues at our conference would have been special. Nonetheless, the virtual collaboration remains richly valuable.

At this year’s conference, twenty-one international scholars will participate online, from law faculties in Peking and Hong Kong, China; Lisbon, Portugal; Paris, France; Hannover, Mainz, and Bruehl, Germany; Katowice and Poznań, Poland, Budapest, Hungary; Doha, Qatar; Ankara, Turkey; and Bucharest Romania.

They will be joined in the multiple panels listed below by twenty-eight colleagues from U.S. law schools. We are pleased at this outpouring of interest and participation.

Especially noteworthy this year is the collaboration between SEALS and the European Legal Practice Integrated Studies (ELPIS) Network. The group was to be represented in Fort Lauderdale by many members, and several are participating in the workshop on Internationalization-ELPIS (see description below). Other panels include similar Workshops on International Collaborative Learning, a Workshop on the Law of Hong Kong, a Workshop on Collaborative Learning, as well as a Discussion Group on International Cooperation and Faculty Exchanges, a Discussion Group on the EU’s General Data Protection, and a Workshop on Free Speech (involving multiple international participants).

2018 Annual Report

2017/2018 was an exciting year for the Global Outreach (Previously International) Committee. It all started with a decision to change the Committee’s name. Global Outreach links to the Committee’s focus to expand our contacts with peers across the planet. Consistent with this focus, we decided on having panels that went beyond the traditional subjects of International Law and Comparative Law and instead, the Committee will be sponsoring events on cooperative agreements for teaching overseas. The new Visiting Professor database debuted at the European Law Faculties Association (ELFA) Conference in Barcelona on April 25, 2018. This database will allow our ELFA colleagues to easily post visit opportunities and our SEALS professor to post their availability. Current Chair Rich Meyer and Incoming Chair Jennifer Bard represented SEALS at the ELFA conference.

This past year the Global Outreach Committee carried the SEALS brand across the globe, including:

  1. Rob Blitt presented “Amendments to the International Religious Freedom Act: Entities of Particular Concern” during a conference on “War and Peace and Religion: Religious Freedom during Russian-Ukrainian Conflict”, at Yaroslav the Wise National Law University, Kharkiv, Ukraine (April 2018).
  1. Greg Bowman created a new Brazil Study Abroad Program in Brazil, hosted Professor Daniel Anorve, a McDougall Visiting Scholar from the University of Guanajuato, Mexico, and the WVU Jessup International Moot Court Team made the regional quarterfinals in the DC regional.
  1. Vaughn James worked on two cases of an international flavor, an immigration case (sad case—the petitioner died before his petition for re-entry could be approved) and a probate case (the decedent was a United States citizen formerly resident in New York City). He also worked directly with one bank on a FATCA/CRS-related issue where the expanse of the paperwork was enough “…to kill a forest!”
  1. Melanie Reid spent five months teaching criminal law & procedure in Riga, Latvia as a Fulbright Scholar.
  1. Rich Meyer led study abroad programs in China, Mexico and South Korea and revised two more in France and Germany. He also presented in Brno, Czech; ChengDu, China; Beijing, China; and Seoul, South Korea and developed partnerships with eight law schools on four continents.

We are excited to be hosting four events for the upcoming SEALS conference. We hope you can join us!

2016 Annual Report

The International Committee continued to strengthen its relationship with the European Law Faculties Association.  After hosting the ELFA President Laurence Gromley at the 2015 SEALS Conference, Committee members Pat Hugg, Greg Bowman, Jennifer Bard & Rich Meyer attended the annual ELFA conference at the University of Groningen, The Netherlands.  Pat, Greg & Rich constituted a special SEALS panel at the Conference and presented on US Cuba Rapprochement.  The Committee & ELFA have an informal agreement that ELFA leadership have a standing invitation to the SEALS Conference, and that the ELFA Conference will continue to host a panel of SEALS speakers.  Laurence and new ELFA President Vera Kalvodova will be attending the International Committee meeting at the 2016 conference, where we hope to continue to expand our cooperation.  MC Law continues to host videos of past Committee presentations through its web page.