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Stanford Report, May 17, 2000

Law School graduates class of 2000

"If lawyers didn't exist, we'd have to invent them," Law School Dean Kathleen Sullivan told the students who participated in the Law School's graduation Sunday.

Sullivan, the Richard E. Lang Professor and Dean and Stanley Morrison Professor of Law, told the graduates that in a nation as vast, diverse and democratic as the United States, "we cannot depend on markets, morals or social custom alone" to structure human relationships. Rather, she said, we need lawyers to "create, apply and enforce the rules and procedures that help us anticipate, prevent and manage conflict."

After exams are scored and final grades are recorded, 184 students will receive the degree of Doctor of Jurisprudence (JD), 19 will receive the Master of the Science of Law (JSM) and 6 will have earned the Doctor of the Science of Law (JSD). The Law School graduation is held before the university commencement ceremony because it operates on a semester system that ends earlier than the quarter system.

Other speakers at Sunday's ceremony included Class of 2000 co-presidents Leah Dell Williams and Robert Richard Long IV, and law Professor Barbara H. Fried, the Deane F. Johnson Faculty Scholar, who was elected by the graduating students to receive the 2000 John Bingham Hurlbut Award for Excellence in Teaching. Fried also received the award in 1991.

Fried advised the students that "life is short and dear. Don't throw it away on things that don't matter. Most people in this world don't have the choice to do what matters to them. Most of you do. So, make up your minds what you want to do and do it. You have great talents, all of you; try to match them with desire."

The ceremony was followed by a buffet luncheon for graduates and guests. Approximately 1,300 people attended the event. Graduates and their families and guests also enjoyed a dinner reception at the Cantor Arts Center the evening before graduation. SR