Cooley Team Finishes Second in the National Trial Advocacy Competition

Cooley's 2nd place National Trial Advocacy Competition Team. From left: Professor Tonya Krause-Phelan, Jacob Levine, Jessica Yarch, 'Best Closing Arugment' Award Winner Lou Danner, and Desiree Shiffler.

Cooley's Second Place National Trial Advocacy Competition Team. From left: Professor Tonya Krause-Phelan, Jacob Levine, Jessica Yarch, 'Best Closing Arugment' Award Winner Lou Danner, and Desiree Shiffler.

November 28, 2012 - Cooley's National Trial Advocacy Competition team wrapped up a great season by finishing second in the nation in this prestigious competition held October 25-28 at Michigan State University. Competing against 25 other teams from law schools around the U.S., Cooley students Lou Danner, Jacob Levine, Desiree Shiffler, and Jessica Yarch faced off in the national finals against a team from Georgia State College of Law.

The finals were hard fought. After deliberating for 40 minutes, the judges announced what they said was a narrow final decision in favor of Georgia State. The judges added that they were impressed with the maturity and sophistication with which the Cooley team members displayed their skills.

Cooley's coach, Professor Tanya Krause-Phelan, announced that Lou Danner received the Best Closing Argument award for the competition. "Although I am slightly biased," Krause-Phelan said, "I must say that Lou's closing argument was something to behold."

The field for the National Trial Advocacy Competition consists of law schools with powerhouse trial advocacy and national team programs.

Cooley first defeated Northern Kentucky University Chase College of Law, Barry University College of Law, and University of Houston Law Center in its three preliminary rounds.

In the quarter-final round of eight teams, Cooley fought through a tough match against Emory University College of Law to move to the semi-finals. There, Cooley faced and defeated Faulkner University School of Law, after which the judges commented on the incredible skill level the Cooley students displayed and remarked how bright their future careers will be.

Coach Krause-Phelan added, "Coaching Lou, Jake, Desiree and Jessica has been an honor and a privilege. The judges were right: These students are gifted, driven and hard-working advocates."

Cooley is well known for its strong outside competition teams. The recent second-place finish comes on the heels of Cooley's 2011 national championship in the ABA Client Counseling Competition, in which Cooley bested 95 other teams from the U.S. and Canada, ultimately finishing fifth in the world in the International Client Counseling Competition. The school was also national champion in the 1996 F. Lee Bailey National Moot Court Competition.

About Cooley Law School: Founded in 1972, the Thomas M. Cooley Law School is a private, nonprofit, independent law school accredited by the American Bar Association and the Higher Learning Commission. Cooley has provided its more than 16,000 graduates with the practical skills necessary for a seamless transition from academia to the real world. Cooley offers its Juris Doctor program, Joint Degree programs, and Master of Laws programs three times a year with enrollment in January, May and September. Cooley Law School has campuses across Michigan in Lansing, Auburn Hills, Grand Rapids and Ann Arbor, and its new campus in Tampa Bay, Florida.



Cooley Team 2nd in nation in annual competition.

Twenty-six law school teams featured in the prestigious event.

Cooley Student Lou Danner wins Best Closing Argument Award.

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