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Hicks awarded WVU College of Law Justitia Officium

WVU Law 2021 Justitia Officium Elliot Hicks

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Trailblazing attorney Elliot G. Hicks is the recipient of the 2021 Justitia Officium Award from the West Virginia University College of Law.  

The Justitia Officium is the highest honor bestowed by the law faculty in recognition of outstanding contributions and service to the legal profession. Hicks received his award at WVU Law’s Commencement in Milan Puskar Stadium on May 16. 

Hicks was inspired to become an attorney by the lawyers who led the Civil Rights Movement. He spent his first two years of college at Washington and Lee University, where he was the first African American elected to the Executive Committee of the Student Body. He later transferred to West Virginia University, earning his B.A. in 1978 and his J.D. in 1981. 

After three years of solo practice, Hicks joined Kay Casto & Chaney in 1984, becoming only the second lawyer of color in West Virginia to be hired by a large firm. Fourteen years later, he became the first African American President of the West Virginia State Bar. 

WVU College of Law clinic earns national recognition

WVU Law Professor Alison Peck

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — A law clinic at West Virginia University has earned an Honorable Mention Award for Excellence in a Public Interest Case or Project from the Clinical Legal Education Association.

CLEA recently presented the award to the Immigration Law Clinic at the WVU College of Law for its efforts to represent and empower the state’s underserved immigrant population. In West Virginia, there is only one full-time immigration lawyer for a statewide community of 30,000 foreign-born residents and their families.

“This recognition by the Clinical Legal Education Association highlights the important role that the WVU Immigration Law Clinic plays in providing and expanding legal services to immigrants in our state,” said law professor Alison Peck, director of the clinic.

The Immigration Law Clinic serves the state’s immigrant community through legal practice, community education and resources, and advocacy. The clinic is also working to build a local immigration bar from by facilitating attorney mentorship, developing a continuing legal education program and recruiting law students who will commit to local immigration practice. 

These 2021 graduates are headed to federal clerkships

WVU Law 2021 Five Federal Clerks


MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Five 2021 graduates of the  West Virginia University  College of Law are headed to prestigious year-long positions in the federal court system.

As federal law clerks, Tyler Barton, Denali Hedrick, Blake Humphrey, Nick Gutmann and Lauren Trumble will gain an intimate perspective on the inner workings of the courts while sharpening vital career-defining skills.

“A clerkship is an unparalleled learning experience, providing the opportunity to hone research and writing skills on various, weighty matters while guided by respected, seasoned, and accomplished legal professionals,” said law professor  Joshua Weishart. “Because they are so formative, provide such a unique perspective, and are relatively few in number, federal clerkships are highly coveted — a prized credential sought by prospective employers — which can grant law clerks access to prestigious networks and relationships that can influence the trajectory of their legal careers.”

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