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Public Interest Speaker Series


On the first Thursday of the month, a Public Interest Law panel discussion is held at the Law School, in the Moot Courtroom.  Each panel covers a specific area of public interest law to expose the campus community to the various fields that exist.  In addition to these Public Interest Law panel discussions, the Leduc Center for Civic Engagement also hosts a Speakers Program where a guest speaker, who is an accomplished leader in the area of law, civic engagement, and/or leadership, is invited to address the campus community regarding his/her experience.  This Program runs at least once an academic semester with the purpose of exposing the campus community to leading practitioners in these fields.

Previous Speakers

November, 2011 (David Simas Part 1/Part 2/Part 3)

David Simas

David Simas is currently serving as the Director of Opinion Research for President Barack Obama’s 2012 re-election campaign.  Born in Taunton, Simas graduated from Coyle and Cassidy High School and Stonehill College. In 1995, Simas graduated from Boston College Law School. 

Since 1989, Simas has been involved in government and politics, beginning as an intern in Senator Edward M. Kennedy’s Boston office. He was elected to Taunton’s school board in 1993 and Taunton’s City Council in 1997 and 1999, where he also served as President of the City Council. In 2006, Simas worked on the campaign of Governor Deval Patrick, who was elected as Massachusetts' first Democratic governor in 16 years and the state’s first-ever African-American governor. During the campaign, Simas had dual roles as a debate partner in both the primary and general elections and as a field coordinator in one of the state’s Senate districts. After being elected as governor, Patrick named Simas his deputy chief of staff in 2007, with oversight of policy development and legislative affairs. Simas held that position until he joined the Obama administration in 2009, where he worked as President Obama's deputy assistant and aide to White House senior advisors, David Axelrod and David Plouffe.

Previous Panels

September 2011 (Topic: Judges)

          Hon. Bettina Borders, Bristol County Juvenile Court

          Hon. Kevan J. Cunningham, Taunton District Court

          Hon. Renee Dupuis, Associate Justice of the Superior Court

October 2011 (Topic: Municipal Law)

          Jordan Fiore, Esq., Law Office of Jordan Fiore

          John Markey, Esq., Moses Smith & Markey, LLC

          Patrick Markey, Esq., O'Shea Getz

          Jane Medeiros Friedman, Esq., City Solicitor's Office, City of New Bedford

          Steven Torres, Esq., corporation counsel, City of Fall River

November 2011 (Topic: Governmental Law/General Counsel)

          Monica Conyngham, Esq., General Counsel, Department of Transportation

          Gary Davis, Esq., General Counsel, Executive Office of Environmental Affairs

          Maureen Flynn, Esq., General Counsel, Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development

          David Martin, Esq., Director of Health Care Policy, Executive Office of Health and Human Services

          Teresa Patten, Esq., Counsel/Secretary of the Board of Directors, Mass Development

December 2011 (Topic: Legislative Law)

          Mary Ann Clancy, Esq., Senior Vice President, Massachusetts Credit Union League

          Joseph Driscoll, Esq., Senior Vice President, O'Neill and Associates

          Mark Paige, Esq., Assistant Professor, Department of Public Policy, UMass Dartmouth

          Edward Phelan, Esq., Counsel, Commissioner of Insurance


February 2012 (Topic: Clerk Magistrates)

         John C. O'Neil, Clerk Magistrate, Fall River District Court

         Jennifer Rose, Assistant Clerk, Fall River Juvenile Court

         Marc J. Santos, Clerk Magistrate, Bristol County Superior Court

         Peter J. Thomas, Clerk Magistrate, New Bedford District Court

April 2012 (Topic: Elected Officials)

Mayor Jonathan Mitchell, City of New Bedford

David Andrews, Office of Attorney General

Chris Markey, Massachusetts State Representative

September 2012 (Topic: Criminal Defense)

Tim Walsh, Esq., Moses Smith & Markey

Thomas Mello, Esq., Committee for Public Counsel Services

Pamela Gauvin, Esq., Law Offices of Pamela S. Gauvin

October 2012 (Topic: Environmental Law)

Chad McGuire, Esq., Assistant Professor, Department of Public Policy, UMass Dartmouth

James Marsh, Esq., Shepard S. Johnson, Jr. & Associates, PC

Shaun Walsh, Esq., Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection

Jennifer Harrington, Esq., Narrangansett Bay Commission

November 2012 (Topic: Military Law)

LT Justin Pasay, U.S. Navy

LCDR Alfred Thompson, U.S. Coast Guard

MAJ Soren Seale, Massachusetts Army National Guard

1LT Ted Massey, U.S. Marine Corps

February 2013 (Topic: Legislative Internship Experience)

Hugh Dunn

Andrew Sibley

Kristen Parent

Louis D'Amarino

Danielle Allard




Contact Us

If you are interested in joining our Public Interest Speaker Series as a panelist or a speaker, attending the Series, or for more information contact:

          John Quinn
          School of Law
          Phone: 508.910.6602


Outreach > Leduc Center for Civic Engagement > Programs > Public Interest Speaker Series