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USD School of Law team wins Chicago moot court competition

VERMILLION, S.D. -- Two students from the University of South Dakota School of Law took top honors at the 31st annual International Moot Court Competition in Information Technology & Privacy Law at The John Marshall School of Law in Chicago.

Christopher Dabney, a second-year student from Huron, S.D., and Kara Frankman, a third-year student from Sioux Falls, S.D., prevailed against teams from the Chicago-Kent College of Law in the final round and from the Southern Methodist University Dedman School of Law in the semifinal round. The duo also received an award for the best respondent’s brief at the competition hosted by the Center for Information Technology & Privacy Law. Frankman received a B.B.A. degree in marketing from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee while Dabney received a B.S. degree in physics at USD and a master’s degree in Liberal Arts at the University of Baltimore.

“Chris and Kara won this competition the way most lawyers win appellate cases – by writing an outstanding brief,” stated Professor Barry R. Vickrey, USD Law Moot Court faculty adviser. “The hard work preparing the brief not only gave them a good brief score throughout the competition but also provided the foundation for six rounds of thoughtful and persuasive oral argument.”

Established in 1981, the Moot Court Competition in Information Technology & Privacy Law has become one of the largest and most highly respected of all international moot courts. Students from law schools throughout the country and from outside the U.S. participate each year at John Marshall to brief and argue challenging and unresolved issues of technology law. The panel of judges for the final round included a justice of the Michigan Supreme Court, a justice of the Court of Appeals for Ontario, Canada, and two judges of the Illinois Appellate Court.

Download a photo of Dabney and Frankman.


Founded in 1862 and the first university in the Dakotas, the University of South Dakota is the only public liberal arts university in the state, with 202 undergraduate and 78 graduate programs in the College of Arts & Sciences, School of Education, School of Law, Sanford School of Medicine, School of Health Sciences, Beacom School of Business and College of Fine Arts. With an enrollment of nearly 10,000 students and more than 400 faculty, USD has a 16:1 student/faculty ratio, and it ranks among the best in academics and affordability. USD’s 18 athletic programs compete at the NCAA Division I level.

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Hanna DeLange
USD News