Yale, Georgetown, and Pace Law students win PLF competition

March 15, 2017 | By MARK MILLER

Pacific Legal Foundation announced the winners of its 2016-17 Annual Law Student Writing Competition today. Awards totaling $9,000 in cash will be given to three top law students whose publishable essays address key constitutional issues before our nation’s courts. PLF saw submissions from law schools across the country and we proudly recognize the three winners as the best of the best. Check out the winners after the jump.

First Place

Joel S. Nolette, a member of the Class of 2017 of Georgetown University Law Center, won the First Place award of $5,000 for his article, End the Failed Auer Experiment Now:  The Flaws of Deferring to Agency Interpretations of their Own Ambiguous Regulations.

Joel graduated summa cum laude from Gordon College in Massachusetts. At Georgetown Law, he is Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Law and Public Policy, and Executive Vice President of the Federalist Society.  He has served as a Law Clerk to U.S. Senator Mike Lee, Senate Judiciary Committee, since 2015.

After graduation, Joel will join the litigation department at Mintz Levin in Boston.

Second Place

Michael J. McConnell, a second year law student at Elisabeth Haub School of Law at Pace University, won the Second Place award of $3,000 for his article, Ending Deference to Agency Interpretations of Their Own Ambiguous Regulations by Enforcing the Constitution’s Separation of Powers and Section 706 of the Administrative Procedure Act.

Michael is a graduate of Nyack College. This summer he will intern with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Connecticut.

Third Place

John Ehrett, a member of the Class of 2017 at Yale Law School, won the Third Place award of $1,000 for his article, On Beyond Lochner:  A Harm-Dependent Standard for Professional Speech Regulation.  John is a graduate of Patrick Henry College, where he majored in Government: International Politics and Policy.  He is the Features and Book Reviews Editor of Yale Law Journal, Symposium Editor of the Harvard Journal of Law and Public Policy, and Features Editor of Yale Journal of International Law.

After graduation, John will clerk with Judge Alex Kozinski of the Ninth Circuit.

The student writing competition demands rigorous reasoning and writing on important legal issues that are engaging the courts and the academy. PLF proudly salutes this year’s winners and encourages law students to watch this space for when we announce the 2017-18 competition topics and deadline.