I. Goodman Cohen lectures in trial advocacy planned for Oct. 18, 19 at local law school


Employment discrimination litigation and public interest litigation will be the topics of two free presentations featuring four attorneys for this year’s I. Goodman Cohen Lecture in Trial Advocacy at Wayne State University Law School.

The first lecture, “Planning Employment Discrimination Litigation,” will be from 12:15 to 1:15 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 18. Presenters will be Deborah Gordon, an attorney with Deborah Gordon Law, and Alice Jennings, Wayne Law class of 1978, a partner with Edwards and Jennings. Both are employment discrimination trial lawyers.

Gordon and Jennings will explain the phases of accepting a case, working it up for trial, completing discovery and trial preparation.

The second lecture, “Planning Public Interest Litigation,” will be from 12:15 to 1:15 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 19. Presenters will be John Philo, executive director and legal director of the Sugar Law Center for Economic & Social Justice, and Michael Steinberg, Wayne Law class of 1989, legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan.

Philo and Steinberg will discuss strategies in the development and planning of public interest lawsuits that seek to contribute to systemic change.

Both lectures will be in the Spencer M. Partrich Auditorium at the law school, 471 W. Palmer St. Lunch will be provided. Alice JenningsParking is available for $7.50 (credit and debit cards only) in Structure One across West Palmer Street from the law school.

Both lectures are free and open to the public, but registration is required.  To register for the Oct. 18 lecture, visit law.wayne.edu/cohenpart1.  To register for the Oct. 19 lecture, visit law.wayne.edu/cohenpart2.

Gordon has specialized in employment and civil rights for more than 30 years. Before starting her own law practice, she served as assistant attorney general for the State of Michigan, Civil Rights/Civil Liberties Division, and a senior trial attorney for the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. She earned her law degree from University of Detroit Mercy School of Law and her bachelor’s degree from the University of Michigan.

Jennings has been involved in numerous civil rights and employment cases including the landmark case of NAACP v. John Engler, Governor, et al. She is the lead attorney of a national team representing Detroit residents who have had their water shut off. Jennings earned her bachelor’s degree in social work from Michigan State University.

Philo has litigated public interest cases throughout Michigan, representing low-income communities and working people on matters of constitutional rights, civil rights and employment law. He earned his master of laws degree from McGill University’s Faculty of Law, his law degree from St. Louis University School of Law, and his bachelor’s degree from the University of Dayton.

Steinberg, who has served as legal director of the ACLU since 1997, has litigated dozens of high-impact cases on a wide range of civil liberties issues, including freedom of speech and expression, racial justice, LGBT rights, voting rights and women’s rights. Five cases on which he has worked have reached the U.S. Supreme Court, including a disability rights case that will be argued Oct. 31. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Wesleyan University.

The I. Goodman Cohen Lecture Series was established by the family of the late I. Goodman Cohen, a prominent trial lawyer in Michigan who was active in the Michigan Trial Lawyers Association, known today as the Michigan Association for Justice.

For additional information about this event, contact Distinguished Professor Robert Sedler at rsedler@wayne.edu.


  1. No comments
Sign in to post a comment »