The 35th Annual Dr. Sadie T.M. Alexander Commemorative Conference

By University of Pennsylvania Black Law Students Association (other events)

Saturday, February 25 2023 9:00 AM 5:00 PM EDT

Zoom Registration:   

Please join the University of Pennsylvania Black Law Students Association for our 35th 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. 

The title of this year's Conference is The End of Affirmative Action: Diversity in Education in a Post-Brown World. The conference will explore the historical developments which led to the creation of affirmative action policies and the ways in which they have perpetually come under attack. An important objective of this conference is to discuss the pending affirmative action litigation at the Supreme Court and to address how the diversity of the American educational landscape may be impacted by it. Another critical objective of ours is to center conversations around segregation and inequity in K-12 classrooms.  

The conference will feature five highly distinguished and expert advocate speakers consisting of Professor Cara McClellan, Jin Hee Lee, Rakim Brooks, Deborah Klehr, and Professor Dennis Parker, who will offer his concluding remarks as our keynote speaker. 


Below please find a rough outline of our schedule:

Registration & Breakfast: 9:00 - 9:50 AM

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Opening Remarks: 10:00 - 10:15 AM 


Part I: The Attack on Affirmative Action

Cara McClellan: 10:20 - 10:50 AM

Jin Hee Lee: 10:55 - 11:25 AM


Lunch: 11:30 -12:20 PM


Part II: The Politics of the Courthouse

Rakim Brooks: 12:30 - 1:00 PM


Part III:  Inequity in K-12

Deborah Klehr: 1:10 - 1:40 PM


Keynote Speaker Dennis Parker: 1:45 - 2:30

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Career Fair: 2:45 - 4:30 PM (limited to Penn Law 1Ls)

Delegates Cafe

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Reception & Dinner: 6:30 - 9:00

Grand Hall Overlook


We are grateful to our sponsors.

Associates of Dr. Alexander:

  • Sidley Austin LLP


Advocates of Dr. Alexander:

  • Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP
  • Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP
  • Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP
  • Latham & Watkins LLP
  • McGuireWoods LLP
  • Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP
  • Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP
  • Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP
  • Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP
  • Troutman Pepper Hamilton Sanders LLP
  • Venable LLP
  • Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP
  • Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati
  • Winston & Strawn LLP


Allies of Dr. Alexander:

  • Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP
  • Ballard Spahr LLP
  • Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP
  • Clifford Chance LLP
  • Covington & Burling LLP
  • Debevoise & Plimpton LLP
  • Dechert LLP
  • Duane Morris LLP
  • Foley Hoag LLP
  • Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP
  • Hogan Lovells LLP
  • Kirkland & Ellis LLP
  • Linklaters LLP
  • McDermott Will & Emery LLP
  • Milbank LLP
  • Morrison & Foerster LLP
  • Shearman & Sterling LLP
  • Williams & Connolly LLP
  • Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr LLP


Friends of Dr. Alexander:

  • Alston & Bird LLP
  • Norton Rose Fulbright LLP
  • Ropes & Gray LLP


University of Pennsylvania Black Law Students Association