Section News

Spirit of Excellence Award Recognizes RPPT’s Manny Halper

Congratulations to RPPT’s Emanuel B. Halper for being awarded a 2005 Spirit of Excellence Award presented by the ABA Commission on Racial and Ethnic Diversity in the Profession. The Spirit of Excellence Award celebrates the achievements of diverse lawyers and others who contribute to the legal profession and society. Awards are presented to lawyers who excel in their professional settings, who personify excellence on the national, state, or local level, and who have demonstrated a commitment to racial and ethnic diversity in the legal profession.

Manny Halper’s experience as a young law graduate unable to find a job in a large New York City law firm because of his Jewish faith was the catalyst that impelled him in 1999 to establish the Section’s Community Outreach Program. The program is rooted in the premise that achieving diversity and equal opportunity within the ABA depends in large part on achieving diversity and equal opportunity within the profession itself.

The first program, in New York City, was co-sponsored by the Asian American Bar Association of New York, the Puerto-Rican Bar Association, the Metropolitan Black Bar Association, and the Alumni Association of CUNY Law School and was taught by volunteer Section members. The program has been expanded to Chicago and Washington, D.C., and plans are in the works to expand the program to Tampa and Atlanta.

Each participant in one of Manny’s programs receives the equivalent of several thousand dollars’ worth of education for no cost whatsoever. Even the meeting rooms and refreshments have been donated, thanks to Manny’s tireless efforts on behalf of the minority community.

In addition to providing the practical and in-depth training necessary to allow diverse attorneys to practice with greater confidence in the fields of real property, probate, and trust law, the program has forged strong ties between the Section and numerous minority bar associations. Manny Halper recognized early in his career that the most open attitudes and the most welcoming policies by a specialized professional association cannot attract minority group members unless a significant pool of minority group members have the opportunity to practice in the professional niche in which the association’s members specialize.

16th Annual Real Property and Estate Planning Symposia

April 27–30, 2005 • Park Hyatt & The Fairmont • Washington, D.C.
The 16th Annual Real Property and Estate Planning Symposia are your chance to earn CLE credit while you learn about cutting edge topics from leading experts in real estate, probate, and estate planning. In addition, they are a time to network with colleagues, find out more about the Section’s committee activities, and enjoy the great city of Washington, D.C.
ADVANCE REGISTRATION: Register by March 18, 2005, and receive the early bird discounted rate of $485 for Section members. The registration deadline is April 15, 2005; after this date, registration will be taken on-site at the Fairmont Hotel.
If you have never been to one of our meetings before, be one of the 100 first-time attendees to register and receive a significant discounted rate of $350.
Please visit our web page at to view the complete brochure and register.


2004 Jacques T. Schlenger Student Writing Contest Winners

First place winner is Kelly Culpin, Emory University, for her submission, “The Validity of Post-Petition Transfers of Real Property: Who Does the Bankruptcy Code’s Section 549(c) Protect?” Second place winner is Malia Schreck, University of Hawaii, for her essay, “Narrowing the Public Use Doctrine: State Courts Take Back the Takings Clause.” In third place is Ruth Cramer, Valparaiso University, for her essay, “Federal Estate Tax Reform: Breaking the Death Tax Cycle and Returning Control to the States.”

The competition is named in the memory of Jacques T. Schlenger, a nationally renowned estate planning lawyer, founder of the Venable Foundation, and a member of the Section for 45 years. The award is co-sponsored by the Venable Foundation, which was established in 1981. The foundation promotes the health and well-being of the communities where Venable clients and lawyers work and live and supports a wide range of civic, cultural, and charitable endeavors as well as public interest law and legal education.

The award is designed to foster interest, encourage legal scholarship, and reward law student writing on real property, probate, and trust law subjects of general and current national interest. The competition is open to all full-time law students in ABA-approved law schools in the United States and its possessions.

For more information about the writing competition, contact Anne Steib, ABA Section of Real Property, Probate and Trust Law, at (312) 988–5590, or visit the Section web site at