Urban Peace Summit Unites Law School, Northwest Academy of Law, and Community

Dozens of Washington University School of Law students and faculty members joined several hundred Northwest Academy of Law high school students, administrators, community members, and dignitaries at the recent “Urban Peace Summit” at Northwest Academy. 

Law faculty and students had worked with Northwest behind the scenes to help create the event, which highlighted positive responses to the challenge of urban crime. It was, in part, an answer to an “Urban Crime Summit” held at the school a few months ago. 

Moderated by former KSDK News Channel 5 education reporter Sharon Stevens, the summit included Missouri State Representative Josh Peters, Missouri State Senator Joseph Keaveny, St. Louis Police Chief Sam Dotson, Assistant Attorney General Mary Morris, and Superintendent of St. Louis Public Schools, Dr. Kelvin Adams.   

After a welcome from Northwest Academy Principal Valerie Carter-Thomas, St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay spoke, followed by Washington University Associate Professor of Law John Inazu

“I’m here today in part because of a serendipitous moment that has brought more than 20 Washington University law students together with more than 40 Northwest students during the course of this semester,” Inazu said. “Over the past few months, a number of the faculty and staff at both schools, as well as the Brown School of Social Work, have come together for this extraordinary opportunity.” 

Inazu urged the crowd to focus on remembering the positive, building relationships, and taking action as participants move forward and build on the summit’s positive energy. Following a spirited panel discussion, the summit ended with reflections by Northwest students. 

“The summit allowed high school voices to be heard in a way they haven’t been heard before,” Inazu said after the summit. “It will lead to even stronger connections between Washington University and Northwest, by familiarizing more law students and faculty with the high school and facilitating more opportunities for mentoring and partnership.” 

In addition to Inazu, Washington University law Professors Deborah Dinner, Katherine Goldwasser, Michael KobyGreg Magarian, Jane Moul, Kathryn Pierce, Mae Quinn, Ann Shields, and Karen Tokarz attended the summit. Law student participants included David Allen, Kaitlin Atlas, Aissatou Barry,  Andrew Bloomberg , Claire Botnick, Tessa Castner, Andrew Cook, David Dean, Ben Guthorn, Noble Freeman, Susie Lake, Claire MelvinZachary Miller, Rebecca Morton, Mark Phillip, Flora Sarder, Gabe Schechter, Meredith Schlachter, and Sydney Tonsfeldt.  

 

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By Timothy J. Fox