Please join the University of Pennsylvania Black Law Students Association for our 33rd Annual Dr. Sadie T.M. Alexander Commemorative Conference, which celebrates the life of Dr. Alexander, the first Black woman to graduate from Penn Law in 1927. Since 1988, Penn BLSA has held an annual conference to honor Dr. Alexander’s legacy by delving into legal issues that are pertinent to the Black community and committing to progressive legal advocacy.
This year’s Conference is entitled Hidden Truths: Addressing a 13th Amendment Ambiguity that Created America’s Carceral State. will explore the prison abolition movement. Despite the emancipation of the 13th Amendment, Black Americans remain oppressed at the hands of the law. The criminal punishment system today can be traced back to slavery, where prisons are used to maintain and reinforce the disenfranchized state of Black Americans in society. Although the carceral system aims to rehabilitate criminal offenders on its face, in practice, it further reinstates the subjugated status of black people and preserves a racial capitalist power structure. This year’s conference will explore the prison abolition movement, including discussions regarding its historical analysis, the school-to-prison pipeline, and practical policy making and reform. We look forward to a robust conversation about fostering a society that focuses on freedom and justice instead of profit and punishment.
This program has been approved for 3.0 total CLE credits (1.0 substantive credit and 2.0 ethics credit) for Pennsylvania lawyers. CLE credit may be available in other jurisdictions as well. Attendees seeking CLE credit must register for CLE credit and make a payment via the online CLE registration link in the amount of $120.00 ($60.00 public interest/non-profit attorneys). In order to receive the appropriate amount of credit, passcodes provided throughout the program must be noted in your evaluation form.
Penn Law Alumni receive CLE credits free through The W.P. Carey Foundation’s generous commitment to Lifelong Learning.
Virtual Conference Itinerary
10:45-11:00AM: Welcome & Introduction
11:00AM-12:15PM: History of the 13th Amendment: From Slavery to Mass Incarceration
1:00-2:15PM: The Road to Freedom: Abolishing America’s Prison System
3:00-4:45PM: Career Fair*
3:30-4:30PM: Networking Reception**
5:00-6:00PM: Keynote Address and Closing Remarks
*Participating law firms and Penn BLSA members only.
**Penn BLSA members and alumni only.
Thank You Penn BLSA Sponsors!
Penn BLSA is honored to have the support of several esteemed law firms. Without the generous contributions of our sponsors, the Dr. Sadie T.M. Alexander Commemorative Conference—and other missions critical to Penn BLSA initiatives such as our service trip, mentoring program, and professionalism events—would not be possible. Thank you to all of our sponsors for your continued support and allyship.
Advocates of Dr. Alexander: Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP; Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP; Latham & Watkins LLP; Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP; and Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP.
Allies of Dr. Alexander: Clifford Chance US LLP; Fenwick & West LLP; Foley & Lardner LLP; Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP; Hogan Lovells; Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy LLP; Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP; Shearman & Sterling LLP; Simpson Thatcher & Bartlett LLP; Sullivan & Cromwell LLP; and Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz
Friends of Dr. Alexander: Debevoise & Plimpton LLP; and Ropes & Gray LLP