Law Student

Past Winners

Congratulations to the winners of the Schwab Essay Contest! To read winning essays, just click on the title links (if provided).


First Place
Rachel Schwartzman
Cardozo Law School
New York City, NY
"Utilizing Final-Offer Arbitration to Settle Divorces: An Analysis"

Second Place
Caitlyn Garcia
Brooklyn Law School
Brooklyn, NY
“Replacing Foster care with Family Care: The Family First Prevention Services Act of 2018” 

Third Place
George Emmons
Golden Gate University Law School
San Francisco, CA
“Domestic Violence Laws & the INA: How Domestic Violence Perpetrators Attain Immigration Benefits"


First Place
Stephanie Tabashneck
Northeastern University School of Law
Boston, MA
"Family Drug Courts: Combatting the Opioid Epidemic"

Second Place
Stephanie O'Loughlin
University of Connecticut School of Law
Hartford, CT
"Lessons from My Sister’s Keeper: A Minor’s Right to Refuse Life-Saving Treatment"

Third Place
Carolyn Lipp
Yale Law School
New Haven, CT
"Fostering Uncertainty?:A Critique of Concurrent Planning in the Child Welfare System"


First Place
Joseph A. Carroll
Dickinson School of Law, The Pennsylvania State University
Sommerset, PA
”Family Law Is Not “Civil”: The Faulty Foundation Of The Domestic Relations Exception To Federal Jurisdiction”

Second Place

Michelle Gros
Southern University Law Center
Prairieville, LA
“In The Case Of Biology V. Psychology: Where Did My "Parent" Go?”

Third Place
Morgan Chandler
University of Montana
Missoula, MT
“The "De-Chattelization" Of Companion Animals Through Family Law Legislation: How Alaska's H.R. 147 Has Dismantled The Traditional Property Law View Of Pets”


First Place
Lisa Havilland
The George Washington University School of Law
Dickerson, MD
“One Year Isn’t Enough: How the Hague Abduction Convention’s One-Year Limitation Encourages Abductors to Conceal Their Child’s Whereabouts”

Second Place
Rachel Shute
Suffolk University Law School
Boston, MA
“Family and Medical Leave: Examining Recovery and Bonding Time to Promote Healthy Families Who Utilize Surrogacy”

Third Place
Anna Clark
University of Baltimore School of Law
Forest Hill, MD
“Where’s My Sister? Siblings Should Have a Statutory Right to be Placed Together in Foster Care”


First Place
Jamie Bryant
University of Maine School of Law
Portland, ME
"My Two Dads (and Three Moms): Balancing a Child's Interest and a Parent's Fundamental Right When Granting De Facto Parent Status"

Second Place
Zoe Garvin
Gold Gate University School of Law
San Francisco, CA
“The Unintended Consequences of Using Rebuttable Presumptions to Determine Child Custody in Domestic Violence Cases”

Third Place 
Maleaha Brown
Howard University School of Law
Washington, DC
“When Pros Become Cons: Ending the NFL’s History of Domestic Violence Leniency”


First Place
Moriah Silver
Northeastern Law School
Boston, MA   
"The Second Rape”: Legal Options for Rape Survivors to Terminate Parental Rights"

Second Place
Aaron Young
Georgetown University Law Center
Washington, DC
" All in the Constitutional Family: Revisiting Definitions of Family Relationships in Immigration Law "

Third Place 
Lindsee A. Acton
Washburn University School of Law 
Topeka, KS
" Overturning In re Gardiner:  Ending Transgender Discrimination in Kansas"


First Place
Kate Duncan Butler
Washburn University School of Law
Topeka, KS
"Dramatic Leaps in the Right Direction: Protecting Physically Disabled Parents in Child Welfare Law"

Second Place
Jacqueline Clarke
Michigan State University School of Law
East Lansing, MI
"Do I Have A Voice? An Empirical Analysis of Children's Voices in Michigan Custody Litigation"

Third Place 
Allison Adams
Chicago-Kent College of Law 
Chicago, IL
"War of the Wiretaps: Serving the Best Interests of the Children?"



First Place
Jessica Hoffman
Florida Coastal School of Law
Jacksonville, FL 
"You Say Adoption, I Say Objection: Why the Word War over Embryo Disposition Is More Than Just Semantics"

Second Place
Georgia Gebhardt
University of San Diego School of Law
San Diego, CA
"Hello Mommy and Daddy. How in the World Did They Let You Become My Parents?"

Third Place 
Michelle Boykin 
University of South Carolina School of Law 
Columbia, SC 
"A Comparison of Japanese and Moroccan Approaches in Adopting the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction"



First Place
Natalie Amato
University of Maryland School of Law
Baltimore, MD 
"Black v. Simms: A Lost to Benefit Children By Preserving Sibling Relationships When Same-Sex Families Dissolve"

Second Place
Kaitlyn McKenna 
Hofstra University School of Law
Hempstead, NY 
"A Global Perspective of Children’s Rights: Advocating for U.S. Citizen Minors after Parental Deportation Through Federal Sub Agency Creation"

Third Place 
Andrea Potter 
Loyola University New Orleans College of Law 
New Orleans, LA 
Sexting and Louisiana's Punishment for Children the Law Intends to Protect from Prosecution Under Pornography Statutes


First Place
Vanessa Lu
Loyola University Chicago School of Law
Chicago, IL
"The Plan B Age Restriction Violates a Minor's Right to Access Contraceptives"

Second Place
Katherine Herrmann
Ave Maria School of Law
Naples, FL
"Reestablishing the Humanitarian Approach to Adoption: The Legal and Social Change Necessary to End the Commodification of Children"

Third Place
Nellie Herchenbach
Saint Louis University School of Law
St. Louis, MO
"Giving Back the Other Mommy: Addressing White v. White's failure to recognize legal parent status following Same-Sex Relationship Dissolution"


First Place
Andrea "Drew" Lehman
USC Gould School of Law
Los Angeles, CA
"Inappropriate Injury: The CAse for Barring Consideration of a Parent's Homosexuality in Custody Actions"

Second Place
Kathleen L. Lee
Indiana University Maurer School of Law
Bloomington, IN
"In Support of a Gender-Neutral Framework for Resolving Selective Reduction Disputes"

Third Place
Sean Masson
Hofstra University School of Law
Hempstead, NY
"Cracking Open the Golden Door: A Proposed Amendment to Extend Refugee Status to Spouses Who Have Been Persecuted by China's One-Child Policy"


First Place
Christine Olson
UC Davis School of Law
Davis, CA
"Second Class Families: Interstate Recognition of Queer Adoption"

Second Place

Sally Adams
Vermont Law School
South Royalton, VT
"Avoiding Round Two: The Inadequacy of Current Relocation Laws and a Proposed Solution"

Third Place

Lauren Douglass
Washburn University School of Law
Topeka, KS
"Avoiding Conflict at Home When There is Conflict Abroad: Military Child Custody and Visitation"


First Place
Lila Slovak
Temple University Beasley School of Law
Philadelphia, PA
"Smoke Screens: Why State Laws Making It a Crime to Smoke in Cars Containing Children Are a Bad Idea"

Second Place
Jessica Hawkins
Washington University School of Law
St. Louis, MO
"My Two Dads: Challenging Gender Stereotypes in Applying California's Recent Supreme Court Cases to Gay Couples"

Third Place
Tracie Rogalin Siddiqui
Georgetown University Law Center
Washington, D.C.
"Interpretation of Islamic Marriage Contracts"


First Place
Katherine M. Krause
University of Pennsylvania Law School
Philadelphia, PA
"Issues of State Use of Social Security Insurance Beneficiary Funds for Reimbursement of Foster-Care Costs"

Second Place

Deborah P. Cromer
Whittier Law School
Costa Mesa, CA
"Through No Fault of Their Own: Reasserting a Child's Right to Family Connectedness in the Child Welfare System"

Third Place

Annie Y. Wang
Santa Clara University School of Law
Santa Clara, CA
"Unmarried Cohabitation: What Can We Learn From a Comparison Between the United States and China?"


First Place
Karly Grossman
Temple University School of Law
Philadelphia, PA
"Transsexuals and the Legal Determination for Sex"

Second Place

Melissa Kucinski
Pace University Law School
White Plains, NY
"New York's Recognition of Same-Sex Marriage"

Third Place

Matthew Pakula
Michigan State University College of Law
East Lansing, MI
"A Federal Filial Responsibility Statute: A Uniform Tool to Help Combat the Wave of Indigent Elderly"


First Place
Marcia Yablon
Yale Law School
New Haven, CT
"Statement of Originality for Paper on the Indian Child Welfare Act Amendments of 2003"

Second Place

Alyssa Rower
Duke University School of Law
Durham, NY
"The Legality of Polygamy: A Discussion of Whether Polygamy Should be Legalized under the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment following Lawrence v. Texas"

Third Place

Matthew Astle
Harvard Law School
Cambridge, MA
"An Ounce of Prevention: Marital Counseling Laws as an Anti-Divorce Measure"

Note: More examples of winning essays that have been published in the Family Law Quarterly may be found in Vol. 37, No. 3, (Fall 2003) and Vol. 38, No. 3 (Fall 2004).