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Events & CLE

View the Standing Committee's upcoming and past events — including photos and live recordings from our breakfast programs.

A Discussion with Jonathan Meyer, DHS General Counsel - Wednesday, May 29 – Noon – 1:30 p.m.

Jonathan Meyer was confirmed as the sixth General Counsel of the Department of Homeland Security in 2021. He leads a team of approximately 4,000 lawyers who serve across DHS. In addition to providing legal counsel to the Secretary and senior leadership, he and his team are responsible for providing legal support to the agency’s wide variety of missions and activities, including those regarding incident response, cybersecurity, counterterrorism, immigration, maritime operations, election security and international trade. During his talk, Mr. Meyer will highlight key agency priorities for the current year and beyond.

Recordings Available

33rd Annual Review of the Field of National Security Law CLE Conference

Conference audio recordings are now available. Please note: CLE Credit is only available for live attendance, not recorded viewings.

Conference - Details

Women in National Security Law Webinar Program: National Security and Emerging Technologies

June 28, 2023

Listen to a discussion with Lala Qadir, ABA Standing Committee on Law and National Security Law (SCOLANS) Advisory Committee, Chair and Principal Assistant Director and Chief of Staff of the National Security Division at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP). The discussion was moderated by Margaret Hu, SCOLANS Advisory Committee member and Professor of Law, William & Mary Law School and opening remarks were given Jennifer O’Connor, Chair, Women in National Security Law. They discussed the role of emerging technologies in national security and the development of long-term science and technology strategies to strengthen our national security and competitiveness.

Lost Trust: Politics and Intelligence

June 23, 2023

Recent political developments have damaged the reputation of the intelligence community and have deeply divided the country. The recent performance of the intelligence community, and particularly the FBI, has battered its reputation for avoiding partisanship. Reports by Robert Mueller, John Durham, and multiple inspectors general have fostered Republican suspicions that the Trump-Russia investigation was driven more by politics than by evidence. More recent episodes have added to claims of bias in the intelligence community, from the 51 intelligence professionals who claimed that the Hunter Biden laptop had all the earmarks of Russian disinformation to FBI whistleblower complaints and the disclosure that the FBI improperly queried section 702 data to investigate both BLM and January 6. This loss of faith in national security agencies raises questions with profound consequences for American democracy. Did our federal law enforcement and intelligence communities allow themselves to become politicized? Did they fail to take seriously enough the risk of giving the appearance of partisanship? And, most importantly, what can be done today to restore trust and avoid another seven years as disastrous for public confidence as the last seven?

Meet the - Panel

An NPEC and ABA-sponsored Hill Event: “Over-classification: How Bad Is It, What’s the Fix?”

National Security Law Today Podcast Logo

May 11, 2023

The Nonproliferation Policy Education Center (NPEC) and the Standing Committee on Law and National Security cohosted an event on Capitol Hill featuring Senator Mark Warner, chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, and Senator Mike Rounds who also is a member of the committee and sits on the Senate Armed Services Committee. The event also featured Ben Powell of the Congressionally mandated Public Interest Declassification Board. Opening Remarks were given by Harvey Rishikof, Counselor, American Bar Association Standing Committee on Law and National Security, and Henry Sokolski, Executive Director, Nonproliferation Policy Education Center. The Senators and Mr. Powell explained how over-classification is undermining our national security and laid out their proposals to fix the problem. Many of their comments focused on NPEC’s study, “Over-classification: How Bad Is It, What’s the Fix?” Because there is a good chance that the proposals discussed are fixes the White House and Congress may soon adopt, the videos are must-listening.

Event - Recording

FISA Section 702 Symposium

National Security Law Today Podcast Logo

April 26,2023

The Georgetown Law Center on National Security and The American Bar Association Standing Committee on Law and National Security co-sponsored an event at Georgetown University Law Center. The symposium covered the current operations and challenges brought by and reforms for reauthorization of FISA Section 702. Speakers included the National Security Advisors to Rep. Hakeem Jeffries and Rep. Kevin McCarthy; lawyers from the National Security Division, Department of Justice and the FBI; General Counsel of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence; and representatives from the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence and the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Event - Details & Recording

Recent Events

Luncheon Program: CFIUS and Investment Screening: A Discussion with the Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Investment Security on Policies, Priorities and Enforcement

December 1, 2022 | A discussion with Paul Rosen, Assistant Secretary for Investment Security at the U.S. Department of the Treasury, and the lead for all operations and activities of the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS). Mr. Rosen addressed emerging issues and priorities for the Committee, including CFIUS’s new enforcement guidelines and President Biden’s Executive Order on CFIUS, among other developments.

An NPEC and ABA-sponsored Workshop: "What Is America’s Obligation to Avert Targeting Power Reactors?"

Held on August 23rd, 2023|After Russia's military assaults against Ukraine’s power reactors, many fear the precedent has been set for future military attacks against power reactors, not only in Europe, but in the Middle and Far East as well as South Asia. Over 170 nations have ratified Protocol 1 of 1977 to the 1949 Geneva Convention, which specifically discourages military assaults against nuclear power plants. However, the U.S. has only signed Protocol 1, but not yet ratified it. Meanwhile, the Pentagon's Law of War Manual further states that under customary international law, “no legal presumption of civilian status exists” for objects. It also notes that electrical power stations are generally recognized to “be of sufficient importance... to qualify as military objectives in armed conflicts.” In light of these facts, should the Pentagon’s current understanding of America’s obligations under Protocol 1 be controlling? What, if anything, might be the case for a stricter interpretation of our obligations? What are the relative risks, if any, of either position? This workshop discussion held on August 23rd at 5:00pm EDT covered these questions. Gary Corn, who served 26 years as a national security lawyer in the Army including as General Counsel to Cyber Command, led with a brief presentation followed by NPEC’s executive director, Henry Sokolski, and moderated by Harvey Rishikof

View - Here

Reforming the Classification System: Challenges, Approaches, and Priorities

Cosponsored with the Federalist Society and the American Bar Association’s Standing Committee on Law and National Security

(Hudson Institute | December 06, 2022) Our national security relies on the careful and deliberate creation, dissemination, and protection of classified information. But some contend that the current system for classifying and declassifying US government records is outdated and imposes significant economic and public policy costs, directly and indirectly harming national security. Storage and maintenance costs increase as classification levels rise, and these costs will increase with newly classified electronic records growing exponentially, and with numerous records approaching mandatory declassification review. In addition, the problems with decreased efficiency, coordination, and trust and confidence in our national security agencies undermine our nation’s security and public confidence in the intelligence community.

Learn More - Hudson.org

Audio Recording

Breakfast Program: "In Ukraine, there are No Quick Fixes" with John Erath

Aired May 10, 2022 | Following Russia’s illegal and ruthless attack on Ukraine, John Erath discussed how an early end to the violence may be elusive. How can this war end and are there good options going forward? John Erath is the Senior Policy Director for the Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation, following 30 years of government service. He recently completed a two-year assignment on the U.S. National Security Council, where he was responsible for European issues.

ABA’s Women in National Security Law (WINSL) Webinar Program

Practicing National Security Law in Law Firms

Aired September 28, 2022, | The webinar brought together a panel of women who have established themselves as leaders in national security law both inside their firms and within the larger national security community. Jennifer O'Connor, Chair, WINSL, gave welcome remarks and Mary DeRosa, Chair, SCOLANDS, Advisory Committee, moderated the program. The speakers included Susan Cassidy, Partner, Covington & Burling LLP, Beth George, Partner, Strategic Risk, Crisis Management, Wilson Sonsini, Amy Jeffress, Partner, White Collar Defense & Investigations Practice, Arnold & Porter, and Jeannie Rhee, Partner, Paul Weiss.

Women in National Security Law Webinar Recording

A Conversation with Avril Haines Director of National Intelligence

We were honored to host Avril Haines, Director of National Intelligence. As the first woman to serve as DNI, Avril Haines has an extraordinary perspective and the experience to match. Among many things she discusses - China, investments in cyber and intelligence infrastructure, creating a more diverse workforce, the shifting threat landscape, and opportunities for women in the intelligence community.

Lessons for the Next Twenty Years: What We’ve Learned in the Two Decades Since 9/11

Webinar Recording

Aired Thursday, September 9, 2021. Featuring opening remarks by ABA President Reginald Turner and moderated by Judge James Baker (Director, Institute for Security Policy and Law). Ambassador Anne W. Patterson (Kissinger Senior Fellow Yale Jackson Institute for Global Affairs) Michael G. Vickers (Former Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence) And Sahar Aziz (Professor of Law and Chancellor's Social Justice Scholar, Rutgers Law School)

Whistleblowing in the Intelligence Community Legal and Practical Challenges

Webinar Program

Aired May 12, 2021 - Featuring Moderator Dawn Eilenberger (Former Deputy Director of National Intelligence, Former Assistant DNI for Policy & Strategy, Office of the DNI); Michael Atkinson (Partner, Crowell & Moring LLP; co-lead of the National Security practice and former ODNI Inspector General); Joel Brenner (Senior Research Fellow, MIT Center for International Studies and former NSA Inspector General); Jason Klitenic (Partner, Holland & Knight, Head of National Security, Defense and Intelligence Team and former General Counsel, ODNI); and Mark Zaid (Managing Partner, Mark S. Zaid, PC; Founder, James Madison Project and Co-Founder, Whistleblower Aid). Registrants receive 50% off our publication, Whistleblowers, Leaks, and the Media.

Civics as a National Security Imperative: A Conversation with U.S. Supreme Court Justices Sonia Sotomayor and Neil M. Gorsuch

Webinar Program

Aired March 25, 2021. Join SCOLNS members Suzanne Spaulding (CSIS) and Jamil Jaffer (NSI) in a conversation with Justice Sonia Sotomayor and Justice Neil Gorsuch on the importance of civic education as a national security imperative. In a global environment where liberal democracies are facing a crisis of confidence and where authoritarian regimes work to threaten the foundational premise of the rule of law, it is essential that our country grows societal resilience against these threats via a strong foundation in civic education. This program will include a moderated discussion between Justice Sotomayor, Justice Gorsuch, Suzanne Spaulding (Director of the Defending Democratic Institutions Project, CSIS), and Jamil Jaffer (Founder and Executive Director, NSI).

View - Video

An Update on Supply Chain Security and Cyber - Post SolarWinds

Webinar Program

Aired April 16. With Harvey Rishikof (Moderator), Stewart Baker, Joyce Corell, Rob Morgus, Douglas Hassebrock, and Charlie Tupitza. Sponsored by the Standing Committee on Law and National Security and the Cybersecurity Legal Task Force.

CSIS | ‘Civics at Work’ Launch Event

Webinar Program

On May 4, the CSIS Defending Democratic Institutions (DDI) Project will launch its new initiative, 'Civics at Work.' For the past few years the DDI team has worked on an initiative to reinvigorate civic education as a national security imperative. However, while it is important to make long-term investments in K-12 civics, the lack of civic literacy among adults presents a current threat to democracy that demands an urgent response. All Americans need to understand the fundamentals of our democratic republic and their role in sustaining it.

Click to - View Event

National Security Webinars CLE Material

View the CLE materials from our CLE Webinar series.

Foreign Agents Registration Act: What Lawyers Need to Know in A Heightened Enforcement Era

View Recording

David Laufman, partner at Wiggin & Dana LLP and former Chief of Counterintelligence & Export Control in the DOJ National Security Division (responsible for FARA enforcement) explains FARA for lawyers and law firms in this program.

Watch - Here

CLE Reading Materials for "Hacking Elections"

Click through for the linked list of supplemental reading material for the Hacking Democracy: Elections and Beyond CLE Showcase program

ABA’s Women in National Security Law (WINSL) Webinar Program

Practicing National Security Law in Law Firms

Aired September 28, 2022, | The webinar brought together a panel of women who have established themselves as leaders in national security law both inside their firms and within the larger national security community. Jennifer O'Connor, Chair, WINSL, gave welcome remarks and Mary DeRosa, Chair, SCOLANDS, Advisory Committee, moderated the program. The speakers included Susan Cassidy, Partner, Covington & Burling LLP, Beth George, Partner, Strategic Risk, Crisis Management, Wilson Sonsini, Amy Jeffress, Partner, White Collar Defense & Investigations Practice, Arnold & Porter, and Jeannie Rhee, Partner, Paul Weiss.

Watch Women in National Security Law Panels

Women in Intelligence Law - August 12, 2020

Senior women in the intelligence community discuss national security legal issues, provide career advice, and answer audience questions. Watch the full panel with Cynthia Ryan, Past Chair, Standing Committee on Law and National Security; Amb. Bonnie Jenkins, Women of Color Advancing Peace and Security; Donna MacEwen, NRO; Teisha Anthony, NSA; Allison Stevens, NGA; Carol Coll, CIA; and Kristin St. Peter, DIA

View - Speaker Bios

Women in National Security Law Webinar Recording

A Conversation with Avril Haines Director of National Intelligence

This week we are honored to host Avril Haines, Director of National Intelligence. As the first woman to serve as DNI, Avril Haines has an extraordinary perspective and the experience to match. Among many things she discusses - China, investments in cyber and intelligence infrastructure, creating a more diverse workforce, the shifting threat landscape, and opportunities for women in the intelligence community.

Private Sector Cybersecurity: The Changing Landscape

Women in National Security Law Webinar Recording

Aired August 3, 2021, from the Standing Committee on Law and National Security Women in National Security Law. Featuring opening remarks by Jennifer O'Connor (Chair, Women in National Security Law) and moderated by Cybersecurity Legal Task Force Co-Chair Maureen Kelly. Featuring Mieke Eoyang (Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Cyber Policy), Hilary Hageman (Cubic Corporation), Kim Peretti (Alston & Bird), and Kemba Walden (Microsoft). Co-sponsored by the ABA Cybersecurity Legal Task Force.

WINSL Virtual Launch Event - June 4, 2020

The mission of WINSL is to support, promote, and develop women engaged in the practice of national security law. Watch the panel with Cynthia Ryan, Chair Standing Committee on Law and National Security; Amb. Bonnie Jenkins, Founder and Chair, Women of Color Advancing Peace and Security; Mieke Eoyang, Vice President, National Security Program, Third Way; Dawn Browning, Deputy General Counsel, National Security and Cyber Law Branch, FBI

View - Speaker Bios

Dig Deeper on our Recent Conferences

ABA Annual Meeting 2018 - Attacks on Our Institutions of Democracy

A panel at the 2018 ABA Annual Meeting, August 4, 2018 with moderator Harvey Rishikof and panelists Elizabeth Rindskopf Parker, Suzanne Spaulding and Judge Margaret Sweeney

Learn More - Read About the Panel

Thinking about Extremism in the 21st Century

A Keynote Panel from the ABA Rule of Law Initiative Annual Conference on Contemporary Rule of Law Issues: Rule of Law Approaches to Countering Violent Extremism.

Video

ABA Annual Meeting 2016 - Emerging Issues in National Security and Law Enforcement

The Standing Committee sponsored a keynote address at the 2016 ABA Annual meeting with former FBI Director James Comey. The Committee also held a moderated discussion at the 2016 Annual meeting with Marc Rotenberg, the president and executive director of the Electronic Privacy Information Center, Gilman Louie, founder and former CEO of In-Q-Tel and Harvey Rishikof, chair of the ABA Standing Committee on Law and National Security’s Advisory Committee

Video

Watch - Keynote Address