Document Type

Conference Proceeding


The Second Driker Forum for Excellence in the Law, 42 Wayne L. Rev., 115 (1995)


DEAN ROBINSON: We want to welcome all of you to The Second Driker Forum for Excellence in the Law. I'm Jim Robinson, the Dean of Wayne State University Law School. This forum was established and made possible through the generosity of the law firm of Barris, Sott, Denn & Driker to advance the cause of excellence in the law and to honor one of our law school's most distinguished graduates, Eugene Driker. Gene is a 1961 graduate of the law school, was editor in chief of the law review, and we think it's quite appropriate that this forum be held in his name. The Barris, Sott firm has been very generous to the law school and we are grateful to them for supporting this program and other activities at the law school. Today's topic is the title of Dean Kronman's book, The Lost Lawyer: Failing Ideals of the Legal Profession. In the book Dean Kronman describes the lawyer-statesman ideal, an ideal which he tells us sustained the legal profession in America for nearly two centuries and gave it moral depth. The ideal of the lawyer-statesman involves a set of values that prizes good judgment above technical competence and encourages a public-spirited devotion to the law. Such a lawyer is a person possessed of prudence and practical judgment and wisdom. We have been blessed in the state of Michigan with a number of lawyer-statesmen over the years, and I think it's appropriate that we hold this forum in the name of someone I consider to be a lawyer-statesman, Eugene Driker.

Today's forum brings together an all-star cast: the dean of Yale Law School, the president of the American Bar Association, the Chief Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, the United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Michigan, a new United States District Judge for the Eastern District of Michigan and a professor at Wayne State University Law School. Each of your programs describes biographical information about each of our participants in greater detail, and I'll be saying a few words before each of them speak.

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