WASHINGTON, D.C., July 16, 2018 — Protecting our courts and electoral process from cyberattacks, the repercussions of the #MeToo movement and the implications of President Trump’s immigration policies are chief among the issues that will be explored at the 2018 American Bar Association Annual Meeting Aug. 2-7 in Chicago.
High-profile speakers at the meeting include Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein of the U.S. Department of Justice (Aug. 2, 4:30 p.m.); Tina Tchen, founder of the Time’s Up Legal Defense Fund (Aug. 2, 2:30 p.m.); former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder Jr. and President Sherrilyn Ifill of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund (Aug. 4, 8 p.m.); and Executive Director Bryan Stevenson of the Equal Justice Initiative and author of “Just Mercy” (Aug. 4, 5 p.m.).
In addition to the more than 1,000 events at this premier gathering of legal professionals, the ABA House of Delegates — the association’s policymaking body — will meet at 9 a.m. on Aug. 6-7 at the Hyatt Regency Chicago Grand Ballroom (East Tower). For details on the proposals for debate and vote during the two-day session, click here.
Online registration is available for news reporters. Credential guidelines are here.
Newsworthy programs include:
Thursday, Aug. 2
“CLE in the City: Our Path to Lawyer Well-Being: Initiatives to Promote Healthy Practices and Lives” — A panel will discuss the new recommendations of the National Task Force on Lawyer Well-Being, which was created in 2016 to address the unusually high incidence of substance use and mental health disorders among those in the law.
10:30 a.m.-noon, American Bar Association, 321 N Clark Street, Board Rooms
“CLE in the City: Brave New World – Current Developments in Online, Social and Global Gaming” — A panel will address the increasingly complex world of regulation as new forms of gaming – e-game tournaments, ‘freemium” pay-to-play games, online social games, fantasy sports and games that utilize virtual currencies, among them – grow in popularity. Panelists will review U.S. regulation as well as international trends and developments, including the progress in Asian markets to legalize such gaming and how Brexit might affect gaming regulatory matters. 1:15-2:45 p.m., Greenberg Traurig LLP, 77 W. Wacker Drive, Suite 3100
“CLE in the City: Model Rule 8.4 – Update, Discussion and Best Practices in a #MeToo World” — As national awareness on workplace sexual harassment grows, a panel will examine the implications of the strengthening in 2016 of Model Rule of Professional Conduct 8.4 on attorney misconduct. Speakers will update on state-by-state adoption of the rule, enforcement, conflicts with implementation and its application to harassing attorneys.
1:15-2:45 p.m., American Bar Association, 321 N. Clark St., 21st Floor, Board Rooms
“#MeToo, Time’s Up – Sexual Harassment in the Workplace” — A panel – including Tina Tchen, founder of the Time’s Up Legal Defense Fund, and ABA President Hilarie Bass – will examine the implications of the “Me Too” and “Time’s Up” movements on the entertainment industry, legal profession and corporate America. Topics will include how sexual harassment claims against high-profile executives are being handled, workplace measures that can protect victims and the reaction of the legal community to the new awareness of the problem, such as increased pro bono support, emerging law practice areas that address employer response to harassment and the federal judiciary’s evaluation of its code of conduct and procedures for investigating inappropriate behavior.
2:30 -4 p.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, East Tower, Ballroom Level, Grand Ballroom A/B/C/D
“14th Amendment at 150” — With the 14th Amendment turning 150, two of its preeminent historians, Eric Fomer and Michael Vorenberg, along with Baltimore City Solicitor Andre Davis, will discuss the amendment’s origin and its continuing relevance, as both equal-protection and due-process concerns loom large in the United States.
3:30-5 p.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, East Tower, Ballroom Level, Columbus Hall GH
“Cyberattacks and the Courts – What Attorneys Should Know to Protect Sensitive Client Information” — The underfunded computer networks of state and federal courts are under daily cyber-attack. A panel will discuss the necessary overdue upgrades to these networks and the implications of regular breaches, answering questions such as: Why are the courts under attack? What damage has been sustained? How can we protect the data? Who is liable? And, can we mitigate risk in an affordable way?
3:30-5 p.m., Swissotel Chicago, Ballroom Level, Lucerne Ballroom 1
“The Deputy Attorney General of the United States Rod Rosenstein” — Subject of address not yet released by the Department of Justice.
4:30-5 p.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, East Tower, Ballroom Level, Grand Ballroom A/B/C/D
“Investigations and Prosecutions Galore: The New Normal in Today’s Communities” — Law enforcement experts will lead a town hall discussion on the increasing nationwide prevalence of criminal investigations, which implicate all manner of public and private behavior – including police misconduct, sexual harassment and corporate misdeeds – and often result in criminal prosecution, civil enforcement actions and employee discipline. The panel will provide insight on the ethics, challenges and best practices of conducting investigations in today’s divisive, heated environment.
5:30-6:30 p.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, East Tower, Ballroom Level, Columbus Hall EF
Friday, Aug. 3
“Opioids in America: A Multi-Disciplinary Discussion on Cause, Effect & Solutions” — The abuse of opioids in America has reached epidemic proportions in the past few years. Leaders of the medical, dental and legal professions will explain the multi-disciplinary approach necessary to tackle the opioid epidemic in our country.
9-10:30 a.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, West Tower, Concourse Level, Comiskey
“Can’t Touch This – or Can They? Government Searches, Privacy and Security in a Digital Age” — As the Department of Homeland Security increases warrantless searches of electronic devices at international borders, what should companies be doing to protect their confidential information? Paul Rosen, former Department of Homeland Security chief of staff; Jon Gannon, former DOJ National Security Division deputy unit chief; Stephanie Christensen, chief, Cyber and Intellectual Property Crimes Section, National Security Division, United States Attorney’s Office for the Central District of California; Uma Amuluru, former White House lawyer; and Raj De, former general counsel, National Security Agency, will highlight the legal, privacy and constitutional concerns associated with the collection and movement of massive amounts of data now generated by smart-phone usage, the internet of things and other technological developments.
10-11:30 a.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, East Tower, Ballroom Level, Columbus Hall K/L
“The Right (or Not) to Take a Knee: Social Activism and Freedom of Speech in Sports” — Panelists will examine the organized protests of professional and collegiate athletes. From taking a knee during the playing of the national anthem, to wearing apparel in support of Black Lives Matter, to going on strike from competition, speakers will discuss the conflict between players' rights and the restrictions upon their freedom of speech and their organizations' rights to manage sporting conduct and events.
10-11:30 a.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, East Tower, Ballroom Level, Columbus Hall I/J
“State Attorneys General and Federalism in the Obama/Trump Eras” — Using examples of major cases brought by state attorneys general – including those involving President Trump’s travel “ban,” the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals policy, U.S. Census and the Affordable Care Act – legal experts will debate these cases in the context of federalism versus states’ rights. 10-11:30 a.m., American Bar Association, 321 N. Clark St., 21st Floor, Board Rooms South/Center
“If the Shoe Fits: What Footwear Cases Teach Us about IP Protection & Enforcement” — A panel will explore recent cases involving the protection and enforcement of intellectual property rights in footwear, reviewing aspects of protectable trade dress, limitations on the scope of trademark and design rights and considerations in enforcement.
10:15-11:15 a.m., Chicago Marriott Downtown, 5th Floor, Chicago Ballroom F/G
“Protecting Intellectual Property in the Legal Cannabis Industry” — As more states recognize legal cannabis for medicinal and recreational use, businesses in the marijuana industry need guidance to protect their ideas and their brands. A panel composed of in-house counsel, business owners and outside lawyers who have firsthand experience with this problem will lay the groundwork for understanding the ins and outs of intellectual property protection where, on the one hand, state laws legalize cannabis sale and use and, on the other hand, federal laws still categorize cannabis as a Schedule 1 controlled substance.
10:30-noon, Swissotel Chicago, Ballroom Level, Lucerne Ballroom 1
“Blockbuster Supreme Court Decisions in a Partisan Era: Maintaining Public Trust and Institutional Legitimacy” — Legal scholars including former Solicitor General Donald B. Verrilli Jr. will reflect on recent Supreme Court decisions that implicate deep partisan divisions in the United States (e.g., President Trump’s “travel ban,” and Wisconsin’s gerrymandering practices). The panel will examine whether accepting and deciding these types of cases politicizes the High Court, undermines its credibility and affects decisions in lower courts.
10:30-noon, Hyatt Regency Chicago, West Tower, Concourse Level, Water Tower
“The Future of Problem-Solving Courts: Where Do We Go from Here” — As public policy shifts from “smart on crime” to a more traditional “tough on crime” prosecution and sentencing philosophy, experts led by Deputy Federal Public Defender Raul Ayala will address the challenges facing problem-solving courts in the state and federal criminal justice system that have successfully addressed substance-use and mental-health issues.
11 a.m.-12:30 p.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, West Tower, Concourse Level, Comiskey
“Flyers’ Rights: What Every Traveler Should Know” — A panel will provide an overview of the laws and regulations surrounding consumer rights in air travel and explore whether there is too much regulation, too little or just enough.
2-3:30 p.m., Chicago Marriott Downtown, 5th Floor, Chicago Ballroom F/G
“The Trump Administration and Diverse Communities: A Kaleidoscope of Controversies” — Many are divided over whether the Trump administration has eroded or protected the fundamental ideals of life, liberty, equality and justice embodied in the Declaration of Independence. Panelists on both sides of the debate will critically analyze the impact the administration is having on the country, most notably in the areas of criminal justice and human rights.
2-3:30 p.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, East Tower, Ballroom Level, Columbus Hall IJ
“Hurdles and Hope – The Quest for Transparent Government in the US and Abroad” — Although the nation strengthened its open-records laws in the wake of the Vietnam War and Watergate, challenges to those seeking access to public records still exist. A panel will discuss the current state of affairs in the United States and abroad, as Freedom of Information Act requests decline and Justice Department subpeonas against reporters rise.
2-3:30 p.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, East Tower, Ballroom Level, Columbus Hall KL
“Long-Term Careers for Women in Law: What’s Pushing Women Out and What Can We Do to Keep Them in the Profession?” — Why do women leave the legal profession at the height of their careers? With President Hilarie Bass among the speakers, the ABA will reveal the findings from a yearlong study on the disproportionately high rate of attrition among senior women lawyers, and the actions to help stem the tide.
2:30-3:45 p.m., Fairmont Millennium Park, 3rd Level, Crystal Room
“Social Media, Security and Election Law” — How can we protect our electoral process from global cybersecurity threats? Experts will share best practices developed by the U.S. Election Commission, National Institute on Standards & Technology and other global organizations to secure the integrity of elections in America and abroad. Topics include the threat landscape, cybersecurity election infrastructure and cyber-risk management across national borders.
2:30-4 p.m., American Bar Association, 321 N Clark St., 21st Floor, Board Rooms South/Center
“ABA Concert for the Legal Services Corporation – It Is Only Fair 2” — Noted Chicago-based performers from Broadway, cabaret and local companies will perform to raise awareness for the need for legal aid from the Legal Services Corporation, which helps provide access to justice to millions of low-income Americans. Defense attorney Joey Jackson will serve as master of ceremonies.
4-5:30 p.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, East Tower, Ballroom Level, Grand Ballroom A/B/C/D
Saturday, Aug. 4
“Justice Hack” — A hackathon will bring together multidisciplinary teams of community, legal, law enforcement, criminal justice and technology stakeholders in a collaborative environment to develop technology-based solutions to address tension points between law enforcement and the communities they serve.
8:30 a.m.-6 p.m., John Marshall Law School, 315 S Plymouth Court, Lobby check-in
“Families on the Precipice: Navigating the Separation, Detention and Reunification of Families at the U.S. Border” — Despite President Trump’s June 20 executive order to end the separation of families at the U.S. border, the prospect of prolonged family detention and the lack of an effective system to reunite those families already divided remain. Panelists –including those from the University of Chicago’s Young Center for Immigrant Rights, Tahirih Justice Center, ProBAR and Bluhm Legal Clinic at Northwestern Pritzker School of Law – will discuss what lawyers can do to help, the rights of parents and their children, the immigration court system and the ongoing failure of the government to return separated children to their parents unless they submit to deportation.
9-10 a.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, West Tower, Concourse Level, Comiskey
“Sexual Harassment in the Workplace” — How should lawyers for employees and employers change their response to sexual harassment in light of growing national awareness of the issue? Panelists – including New York Times reporter Megan Twohey, who broke the Harvey Weinstein scandal, as well as representatives from the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, Ya Basta and the Duane Morris Institute for Human Resources Professionals – will answer the question and explore related topics.
10-11:30 a.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, East Tower, Ballroom Level, Columbus Hall IJ
“Cybersecurity Wake-Up Call: The Business You Save May Be Your Own” — Cybersecurity experts, including Rajesh De, former general counsel, National Security Agency and former Undersecretary Suzanne Spaulding, Department of Homeland Security, will discuss the growing problem of cyberattacks, where the cost to American businesses have reached the trillions. Speakers will share the legal requirements to protect data and disclose breaches, as well as the vital steps to take now to lessen risks.
10-11:30 a.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, East Tower, Ballroom Level, Columbus Hall IJ
“Attacks on our Institutions of Democracy: The Role of the Judicial System” — As the United States confirms Russian interference in its recent election, national security experts, including Elizabeth Rindskopf, former general counsel for the CIA and NSA, and Suzanne Spaulding, former undersecretary for the National Protection and Programs Directorate at the Department of Homeland Security, will share techniques Russia has used in Eastern and Central Europe and more recent cyber-enabled methods, the framework that could counter this threat, as well as needed legislation to address foreign adversary interference.
10-11:30 a.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, East Tower, Ballroom Level, Columbus Hall KL
“The Trump Immigration Agenda: Redefining a Nation of Immigrants” — Panelists whose organizations stand on the frontline of managing the effects of the Trump administration’s hardline stance on immigrants – including those from the National Immigrant Justice Center, Refugee Council USA and Alianzas Americas – will analyze of the impact of the administration’s attempts to restructure immigration law and policy, exploring the impact of these policies on the future of legal migration, refugee resettlement and the creation of a new class of undocumented individuals.
10:30 a.m.-Noon, Hyatt Regency Chicago, West Tower, Concourse Level, Comiskey
“International Human Rights: Law and Policy in the Trump Administration” — Panelists – including President Elisa Massimino of Human Rights First, Executive Director Joel Simon of the Committee to Protect Journalists, former Department of State Legal Advisor John Bellinger and former Legal Director Victoria Neilson of Immigration Justice Corps. – will discuss the legal issues relating to international human rights posed by the Trump administration, including those related to immigration, press freedoms, privacy, gender violence, torture, minority rights, refugees, travel bans, detainees and military affairs.
1:30-3 p.m., Swissotel Chicago, Event Centre, 2nd Floor, Vevey 3 & 4
“The Miranda Warnings Project: You Have the Right to Innovate” — Representatives from the Chicago-based ABA, Illinois Institute of Technology’s Institute of Design and New Orleans police department, will share their mobile tool prototype that provides pre-recorded Miranda Warning translations in Spanish and potentially other languages for police usage. Speakers, including IIT’s Jeremy Alexis, will share how this court-certified, plain-language tool can be implemented nationwide to better ensure that criminal suspects understand their rights.
2-4 p.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, East Tower, Ballroom Level, Columbus Hall IJ
“General Assembly” — Executive Director Bryan A. Stevenson of the Equal Justice Initiative and author of “Just Mercy” will receive the ABA Medal, the association’s highest honor.
4:30-6:30 p.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, East Tower, Ballroom Level, Grand Ballroom
Award Honoring Former U.S. Attorney General & NAACP Legal Defense Fund President’s Address — The Thurgood Marshall Award honors the late U.S. Supreme Court justice, who epitomized individual commitment, in word and action, to the cause of civil rights in this country. This year’s honoree is former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder Jr. Sherrilyn Ifill, president and director-counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, will deliver the keynote remarks.
8-10:30 p.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, West Tower, Lobby Level, Crystal Ballroom A/Foyer
Monday, Aug. 6
Address by Former United Nations Deputy High Commissioner for Refugees — Alex Aleinikoff, Zolberg Institute on Migration and Mobility, The New School and the former UN deputy high commissioner for refugees, will keynote an annual event honoring the rule of law efforts of the ABA and other organizations.
Noon-1:30 p.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago, East Tower, Ballroom Level, Columbus Hall GH/IJ/KL
Reporters may pick up their press badges at the meeting registration area Grand Registration North of the Hyatt Regency Chicago (Ballroom level, East Tower). During the Annual Meeting, a press room for accredited journalists will be open at Grand Ballroom C/D North of the Hyatt Regency Chicago (Ballroom level, East Tower), starting at 9 a.m. on Aug. 2. Thereafter the press room will be open daily from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. and will close one hour after the House of Delegates adjourns on Aug. 7.
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