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Alumni

Sarah Howard Jenkins (’82) serves as the Charles C. Baum Distinguished Professor of Law at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock William H. Bowen School of Law. In 2017, the University of Kentucky College of Law, now the UK J. David Rosenberg College of Law, inducted Jenkins into its Alumni Hall of Fame.

As an academic-legal professional, Jenkins has devoted her time and energy to challenging her students to develop a commitment to diligence and competence in the study and practice of the law. But Jenkins wasn’t always certain that she would become an attorney.

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Born and raised in inner-city North Philadelphia, John G. McNeill recalls a lawyer who visited his elementary school of predominately Black teachers.

“One of my teachers in fourth grade brought in this white lady who was a lawyer to talk to our class,” McNeill said. The lawyer didn’t talk about the courtroom dramas on TV. “She talked about the little things, like looking at documents, lease contracts, apartment contracts, and installment agreements.”

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In 1955, Ollen B. Hinnant II became the first African American graduate of the University of Kentucky College of Law, overcoming various forms of discrimination while in law school. Hinnant, who died in 2016 at age 85, went on to become the first African American lawyer for State Farm Insurance in Montclair, New Jersey.

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UK Rosenberg Law alumni Melissa Moore Murphy '01 and Daniel (Danny) Murphy Jr. '98 were featured in the Aug. 26 edition of Business Lexington. Melissa Moore Murphy, Fayette County district court judge, appeared on the cover. Judge Murphy and Danny Murphy, UK Rosenberg Law’s senior assistant dean of community engagement & operations/chief diversity officer, were featured in a story, titled “Pillars of Community,” inside the publication.

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Thomas “Tom” Kerrick has had a long and distinguished 40-year career as an attorney, culminating in his swearing in as president of the Kentucky Bar Association on July 1.

Kerrick, who earned a bachelor’s degree in accounting in 1977 and his law degree in 1980 from the University of Kentucky, considers the education and support he received at UK instrumental in any success he has had. This is why he has continued to support the university and the J. David Rosenberg College of Law.

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Herb Stapleton and his teams at the FBI have stayed busy as cyber criminals attempt to take advantage of the coronavirus pandemic.

Stapleton, a section chief in the FBI’s Cyber Division, oversees the Cyber Criminal Operations section, and he is often called to educate the public about cyber scams. He recently appeared on the Today show and has presented during webinars and virtual presentations for various groups, including a hospital association and the National Association of Attorneys General.

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La Tasha Buckner graduated from the University of Kentucky College of Law, now the UK J. David Rosenberg College of Law, in 2000. She currently serves as Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear’s chief of staff and general counsel and previously served as assistant deputy attorney general. Buckner is a native of Glasgow, Kentucky. She began her career as a state prosecutor in the office of longtime Fayette Commonwealth’s Attorney Ray Larson. Buckner is the first person to hold both the general counsel and chief of staff positions simultaneously in Kentucky.

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It is an exciting time to be part of the University of Kentucky J. David Rosenberg College of Law. In the fall, our law community experienced a once-in-a-lifetime semester with big changes and big wins. This newsletter is an opportunity to reflect on where we’ve been and celebrate our successes. It is also an opportunity to look toward the future.

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March 2020

Class Notes

John T. McGarvey (1973) was appointed as Uniform Commercial Code committee chair by the Uniform Law Commission for a two-year term. McGarvey has served as Kentucky’s legislative liaison for the ULC since 2006.

C. Edward Hastie (1974), an attorney with Morgan Pottinger McGarvey, was recognized for Trusts and Estates and Litigation-Trusts and Estates in the 2020 edition of The Best Lawyers in America.

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