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Two Penn State Law in University Park Professors win AALS awards

Penn State Law in University Park professors David Kaye and Mark Storslee were selected as winners of the Association of American Law Schools (AALS) awards. The AALS recognized Kaye and Storslee, along with the other award winners from law schools across the country, at the 2020 AALS Annual Meeting, January 2-5 in Washington, D.C.
Professors Mark Storslee and David Kaye

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – Penn State Law in University Park professors David Kaye, Distinguished Professor of Law Emeritus, and Mark Storslee, assistant professor of law, were selected as winners of the Association of American Law Schools (AALS) awards. Professor Kaye was awarded the Wigmore Lifetime Achievement Award by the AALS Section on Evidence, and Professor Storslee was selected for the Harold Berman Award for Excellence in Scholarship by the AALS Section on Law and Religion.

The AALS recognized Kaye and Storslee, along with the other award winners from law schools across the country, at the 2020 AALS Annual Meeting, January 2-5 in Washington, D.C.

Penn State Law is one of only three schools—along with Georgetown University Law Center and Brooklyn Law School—with two award winners this year. It is also noteworthy that Storslee’s and Kaye’s awards celebrate the accomplishments of a junior and senior law scholar, respectively.

“I am thrilled to see Professors Mark Storslee and David Kaye recognized for their important scholarly contributions,” said Hari M. Osofsky, dean of Penn State Law and the School of International Affairs. “Professor Storslee is already making a major impact on thinking about important law and religion issues at an early stage in his career, and Professor Kaye has played a critical role in developing the way in which evidence law incorporates emerging science and technology. We are so lucky to have them both as part of our community at Penn State Law in University Park.”

Professor David Kaye

The Wigmore Lifetime Achievement Award in the AALS Section on Evidence honors a senior scholar in the field of evidence law who has made leading contributions to the understanding of the proof process, or to the administration and reform of the rules of evidence and the process of proof, or both.

“I have been privileged to teach, think, and write about intriguing and difficult issues in legal proof and scientific evidence,” Kaye said. “That my colleagues in academia have found some of this work to be a contribution to legal thought and practice is immensely gratifying.”

Kaye's research and teaching focuses on the law of evidence and applications of forensic science, genetics, probability, and statistics in civil and criminal litigation. His publications include 12 books and nearly 200 articles and letters in journals of law, philosophy, psychology, medicine, genetics, and statistics. He has served as editor of the American Bar Association publication, Jurimetrics: The Journal of Law, Science, and Technology, and on committees of the American Statistical Association, the National Academy of Sciences, the National Commission on Forensic Science, the National Commission on the Future of DNA Evidence, the National Institutes of Health, the National Institute of Justice, and the National Institute of Standards and Technology. He received a Distinguished Service Award from the federally chartered Organization of Scientific Area Committees for Forensic Science and is a member of the Forensic Science Standards Board and chair of its Legal Task Group.

Kaye has taught evidence, criminal law and procedure, constitutional law, torts, law and science, forensic genetics, forensic economics, statistics, legal philosophy, and international human rights law at universities in the United States, England, and China. Before teaching, he was an associate in a private law firm in Portland, Oregon, an assistant special prosecutor on the Watergate Special Prosecution Force, and a law clerk to Hon. Alfred T. Goodwin, formerly Chief Judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

The Harold Berman Award for Excellence in Scholarship in the AALS Section on Law and Religion recognizes a scholar who is within their first ten years of teaching at an AALS member school for an article written on the subject of law and religion. Storslee was selected for his article, “Religious Accommodation, the Establishment Clause, and Third-Party Harm,” published in the University of Chicago Law Review.

"I am extremely honored to have been selected for the Harold Berman Award,” Storslee said. “As a junior scholar it is humbling to be recognized in this way, especially since so many great papers are published every year. I am also grateful to the awards committee and many senior scholars—both at Penn State Law and elsewhere—who offered encouragement along the way."

Professor Mark Storslee

Storslee’s scholarship focuses on the First Amendment freedoms of religion and speech, and topics in constitutional law generally. His work has been published or is forthcoming in the University of Chicago Law Review, The Review of Politics, Political Theology and other journals. He is also a co-editor of the multi-volume series Comparative Religious Ethics (Routledge 2014).

Prior to joining Penn State Law in University Park in summer 2019, Storslee was the executive director of the Stanford Constitutional Law Center and a law clerk to Hon. Diarmuid O’Scannlain of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

In a press release announcing the 2020 section award winners, Vicki Jackson, AALS President and Thurgood Marshall Professor of Constitutional Law at Harvard Law School, said, “These honorees are recognized by their sections for their great dedication and achievement in legal education and scholarship across the different areas of the law.”

AALS, founded in 1900, is a nonprofit association of 179 member and 19 fee-paid law schools. Its members enroll most of the nation’s law students and produce the majority of the country’s lawyers and judges, as well as many of its lawmakers. The mission of AALS is to uphold and advance excellence in legal education. In support of this mission, AALS promotes the core values of excellence in teaching and scholarship, academic freedom, and diversity, including diversity of backgrounds and viewpoints, while seeking to improve the legal profession, to foster justice, and to serve its many communities—local, national and international.

Located on Penn State’s University Park campus, Penn State Law offers all the resources of a world-class, public research institution while also featuring a student-centered academic environment. With a curriculum taught by renowned legal experts, interdisciplinary study opportunities across Penn State’s largest campus, ample clinical and experiential learning opportunities, exposure to emerging technology, and an individualized approach to career services that includes comprehensive mentoring, the Penn State Law J.D. Program is designed to give students the capacity to accomplish their professional goals.

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