The U.S. Supreme Court represents a key branch of the country's democratic system, holding immense power and responsibility to interpret the Constitution, and protect liberty and civil rights for all Americans. In recent years, Supreme Court decisions have stirred public discourse about its role and influence. Is it wielding its authority in line with its original purpose, and how can it best serve the American people? Legal experts discuss the structure of the Supreme Court, how it has evolved since its formation, and what role it should play in the lives of Americans.
The Civil Discourse Series presents multiple sides of a thought-provoking topic through respectful discussion. For each event, the Museum convenes a panel of subject-matter experts to represent their perspectives on an issue related to human and civil rights.
Presented by The Meadows Foundation.
About the Panelists
Joanna L. Grossman is the inaugural Ellen K. Solender Endowed Chair in Women and the Law at Southern Methodist University’s (SMU) Dedman School of Law. Prior to coming to SMU, she taught at Hofstra University, worked as staff counsel at the National Women’s Law Center, practiced with the Washington D.C. firm of Williams & Connolly LLP, and served as a clerk for Ninth Circuit Judge William A. Norris. Grossman writes extensively on sex discrimination and workplace equality and is an expert in family law. Her books include Nine to Five: How Gender, Sex and Sexuality Continue to Define the American Workplace and Inside the Castle: Law and the Family in 20th Century America, and she is the coeditor of Gender Equality: Dimensions of Women's Equal Citizenship and Family Law in New York.
Frederick M. Lawrence is the 10th Secretary and CEO of the Phi Beta Kappa Society, the nation’s first and most prestigious honor society, and a Distinguished Lecturer at the Georgetown Law Center. He has previously served as president of Brandeis University, Dean of the George Washington University Law School, and Visiting Professor and Senior Research Scholar at Yale Law School, and was a Senior Visiting Fellow at Sciences Po Ecole de Droit. An accomplished scholar, teacher, and attorney, Lawrence is one of the nation’s leading experts on civil rights, free expression, bias crimes, and higher education law. He is the author of Punishing Hate: Bias Crimes Under American Law and frequently contributes op-eds to various news sources.
Roman Martinez is the Deputy Managing Partner of the Washington, D.C. office of Latham & Watkins LLP. A member of the firm’s Supreme Court & Appellate Practice, he focuses primarily on appeals in the Supreme Court and federal and state courts of appeals. He has argued 13 cases in the Supreme Court, involving a wide range of legal issues including the First Amendment, copyright, arbitration, civil rights, and criminal law. Martinez previously served as an Assistant to the Solicitor General at the U.S. Department of Justice, as a law clerk to Chief Justice Roberts and then-Judge Brett Kavanaugh, and in various foreign policy roles at the White House, Coalition Provisional Authority, an U.S. Department of Defense.
About the Moderator
Loren Jacobson is an Associate Professor of Law at the University of North Texas at Dallas College of Law where she teaches courses in health care law, constitutional law, and civil rights law, among others. After graduation, Jacobson clerked for the Honorable Alvin K. Hellerstein and the Honorable Wilfred Feinberg. In 2004, she joined the law firm of Waters & Kraus LLP in Dallas, where she practiced for 12 years. Jacobson has moderated or served on panels for a number of professional organizations and as a speaker at the American Constitution Society’s Dallas-Ft. Worth Lawyers’ Chapter events and the Texas Bar CLE Bill of Rights course. Her scholarly writing has focused on the First Amendment’s commercial speech protections, reproductive rights, and the non-delegation doctrine.
Beth El Binah
Hope Supply Co
League of Women Voters of Dallas
Legacy Senior Communities
SMU Dedman School of Law
SMU Human Rights Program
Southwest Jewish Congress