Skip to main content


WVU Law experts participate in Brookings Institution workshop on coal communities

Law Professor Jamie Van Nostrand

MORGANTOWN, WEST VIRGINIA – Two experts from  West Virginia University recently participated in a workshop at the Brookings Institution in Washington, DC, to discuss the future of coal workers and their communities.

Rochelle Goodwin, WVU senior associate vice president, moderated a panel discussion on the current conditions and pressing needs of coal communities. She is the former director of state operations for Senator John D. “Jay” Rockefeller and a 2000 graduate of WVU Law.

Law professor  James Van Nostrand (left), who serves as director of WVU’s Center for Energy and Sustainable Development, discussed the trends and outlooks faced by coal workers and their communities.

WVU Law receives $150,000 grant from Natural Resources Conservation Service

MORGANTOWN, WEST VIRGINIA—The Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) recently provided $150,000 in federal funding to the  West Virginia University  Land Use and Sustainable Development (LUSD) Law Clinic to support an ongoing partnership.

“NRCS, our partners and West Virginia landowners will continue to greatly benefit from this agreement with the LUSD Law Clinic,” said Nicole Viars, acting state conservationist. “We are able to continue our commitment through collaborative efforts to address risks and purchase conservation easements. In turn, we will be able to protect more agriculture lands over time.”

Since 2014, the LUSD Law Clinic has assisted NRCS with conservation efforts for more than 20 properties in the state, including farmlands, wetlands, and open spaces. The funds support the LUSDLaw Clinic, based at the WVU College of Law, and NRCS to conserve land and provide educational and other outreach services throughout West Virginia.

“The additional funding allows us to continue working with NRCS until September 2019 with greater capacity than before,” said  Katherine Garvey, director of the clinic.

Professor Martin's book on business and human rights published by Cambridge University Press

Jena Martin and The Business and Human Rights Landscape

MORGANTOWN, WEST VIRGINIA – In 2011, the United Nations adopted the Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, establishing the first global standards for preventing human rights violations by businesses.

Four years later, a new book made possible by a  WVU College of Law conference is the most comprehensive guide to business and human rights. Published by the Cambridge University Press, “The Business and Human Rights Landscape” is edited by  Jena Martin, a WVU law professor, and Karen Bravo, an Indiana University law professor.

The book is based on papers presented at a gathering of global experts on business and human rights hosted by theWVU College of Law in September 2013. Organized by Martin, it was the first comprehensive conference on business and human rights held at a university in the United States.

“The Business and Human Rights Landscape” includes in-depth explorations of the U.N. Guiding Principles. It also presents practical case studies of current events, such as the 2013 garment factory collapse in Bangladesh that killed more than 1,100 people, as well as perspectives of historical events such as the colonial slave trade.

Q&A: Jaci Gonzales Martin '10

The Supreme Court of the United States’ historic 5-4 decision in Obergefell v. Hodges (2015) made same-sex marriage legal in all 50 states. On the front lines of the case was 2010 WVU Law graduate Jacklyn “Jaci” Gonzales Martin, then an attorney with Gerhardstein & Branch in Cincinnati, Ohio, and co-counsel for lead plaintiff Jim Obergefell (above). Not long after the ruling, Martin talked to WVU Law Magazine about her involvement in the groundbreaking civil rights victory.

I met Jim Obergefell and his husband, John Arthur, shortly after they were married in the summer of 2013. When the Windsor decision [declaring Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional] came down that summer, having been together for 20 years, Jim and John decided to make their union official.

John had ALS, and he did not have long to live. He was bedridden, so the couple took a medically equipped plane to Maryland and married on the tarmac. It wasn’t until Jim and John got home that it started to sink in for them that although their marriage was legal in Maryland and recognized by the federal government, their marriage did not exist in their home state of Ohio.

My boss, Al Gerhardstein, was introduced to Jim and John through a mutual friend days after their wedding, and our firm started dreaming about how to ensure that their marriage would be recognized by their home state. We knew that the state’s system for recording deaths would be one inevitable and imminent way Ohio’s marriage equality bans would affect this couple. There is a place on a death certificate to mark whether a person was married and the name of their surviving spouse. For John Arthur, unless we acted, he would be known on his last official record of his life as “single” and Jim Obergefell would not be recognized as his surviving spouse.

Harvard Business Review names John Chambers '74 world's #2 "Best-Performing" CEO

Harvard Business Review names John Chambers '74 world's #2 "Best-Performing" CEO

Harvard Business Review names John Chambers '74 world's #2 "Best-Performing" CEOJohn T. Chambers, WVU Law Class of 1974, has been namd the number two “Best-Performing CEO in the World” by Harvard Business Review (HBR). Chambers is the executive chairman and former CEO of Cisco Systems. He is also a graduate of the  WVU College of Business and Economics

To compile its list of the world’s best-performing CEOs, HBR looked at companies that were in the S&P Global 1200 at the end of 2014. The magazines evaluated 907 CEOs from 896 companies (some firms have co-CEOs) as of April 30, 2015. Chambers stepped down as Cisco Systems CEO in July 2015 after more than two decades at the company’s helm.

To read Harvard Business Review’s “The Best-Performing CEOs in the World” (Nov. 2015),  click here.



WVU LAW Facebook WVU LAW Twitter WVU LAW Instagram WVU LAW LinkedIn WVU LAW Youtube Channel