Lawrence Fox to give Francis X. Riley Lecture

Lawrence J. Fox
Lawrence J. Fox

The NIU College of Law will welcome Lawrence J. Fox, legal ethics expert and Yale Law Crawford Lecturer, to deliver the 19th annual Francis X. Riley Lecture on Professionalism at 3 p.m. Friday, March 30.

Fox will present “Can This Profession be Saved?” in the Francis X. Riley Courtroom of Swen Parson Hall.

His lecture will focus on the nature of the legal practice, specifically the long-standing debate regarding whether law is a business or a profession. Although it is both, the business side seems to be winning. Fox will discuss how to preserve the professional integrity of the law, drawing from his experience as a practicing attorney and educator from both ethical and practical perspectives.

He has worked for the last 36 years as a partner of Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP, where he specializes in securities and general commercial litigation and the counseling of law firms. In addition, he was the I. Grant Irey, Jr. adjunct professor at Penn Law School from 2000 to 2008, and from 2007 to 2010 he was a lecturer at Harvard Law School before joining Yale Law School as visiting lecturer. He is a 1968 graduate of the University of Pennsylvania Law School, where he received his LL.B., cum laude, and was editor of the University of Pennsylvania Law Review.

Recognized as an active member and leader in the legal community, he received the American Bar Association’s (ABA) Pro Bono Publico Award in 2005 and the Michael Franck Award in 2007.

Fox is the author of numerous articles that have appeared in regional and national publications, covering a wide variety of subjects relating to ethical issues, internal investigations, sanctions, expert witnesses, and other topics. He has made numerous television appearances on Nightline, Crossfire, the Today Show, Talk Back Live, Burden of Proof, CNN and MSNBC on topics ranging from the Clinton Impeachment to the Death Penalty.

The Francis X. Riley Lecture on Professionalism was established in 1994 to honor Professor Emeritus Riley, who devoted his life to the law and legal education. The lecture series brings distinguished speakers to the NIU College of Law to discuss current issues relating to the legal profession.

Riley died Sept. 14, 2006. He was 93. This lecture series continues to serve as part of his legacy at the College of Law and within the legal community.

The lecture will be followed by a reception and the 17th annual Public Interest Law Society Auction.

One hour of CLE credit will be given for this lecture. Ethics credit approval pending.

For more information, call (815) 753-9655 or email lawevents@niu.edu.

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