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School of Law Federalist Society Hosts Ilya Shapiro

Ilya Shapiro Ilya Shapiro is the director of the Robert A. Levy Center for Constitutional Studies at the Cato Institute.

VERMILLION, S.D. — The University of South Dakota School of Law Federalist Society will host Ilya Shapiro, director of the Robert A. Levy Center for Constitutional Studies at the Cato Institute, Wednesday, Nov. 6 at 12 p.m. in the courtroom.

"We are excited to welcome back Ilya Shapiro to USD Law,” said Danie Rang, a second year law student and president of the Federalist Society at USD Law. "Given the recent voter-initiated efforts to put marijuana on the ballot in South Dakota, the issue is very timely and we expect that students may have questions surrounding the issue.” 

Shapiro’s presentation is titled “High on Federalism: Marijuana’s challenge to federal-state relations." USD professor emeritus Frank Pommersheim will provide commentary on the tribal perspective of the issue after the lecture.

"Professor Pommersheim's commentary will make the event unique and special for South Dakota,” said Rang.

Shapiro is also the publisher of the Cato Supreme Court Review. He has contributed to a variety of academic, popular, and professional publications, including the Wall Street Journal, Harvard Journal of Law & Public Policy, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, USA Today, National Review and New York Times Online. Shapiro is the co-author of Religious Liberties for Corporations? Hobby Lobby, the Affordable Care Act, and the Constitution (2014).

Additionally, Shapiro has testified before Congress and state legislatures and has filed more than 300 amicus curiae "friend of the court" briefs in the Supreme Court, including one that The Green Bag selected for its "Exemplary Legal Writing" collection. Before joining Cato, he was a special assistant/adviser to the Multi-National Force in Iraq on rule-of-law issues and practiced at Patton Boggs and Cleary Gottlieb.


USD’s Knudson School of Law prepares students for leadership in the administration of justice in South Dakota, including in rural areas where the demand is great, and for private practice, public service, business and other law-related endeavors anywhere. Its joint degree program allows students to also earn one of nine master’s degrees within the traditional three-year law curriculum, which includes course tracks in business, commercial, constitutional, criminal, employment, environmental, Indian, real estate and tax law as well as civil litigation and estate planning.


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 84 graduate programs in the College of Arts & Sciences, School of Education, Knudson 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.


Hanna DeLange
USD News