Home About RSS

Stanford’s Mariano-Florentino Cuéllar tapped for California Supreme Court

This news story was originally written by Clifton Parker and published July 22, 2014, in the online version of the Stanford Report. 

Photo of Mariano-Florentino Cuéllar

Mariano-Florentino Cuéllar

Stanford’s Mariano-Florentino Cuéllar was nominated by Gov. Jerry Brown on Tuesday to serve as an associate justice on the California Supreme Court.

A member of the Stanford faculty since 2001, Cuéllar, widely known as “Tino,” has worked in two presidential administrations and has a significant track record in public service.

He is the Stanley Morrison Professor of Law and director of the university’s Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies. An expert in public law, Cuéllar has taught a variety of subjects, including administrative law, criminal law, international law, executive power and legislation. He is also a professor of political science, by courtesy, at the School of Humanities and Sciences.

Cuéllar, in the Office of the Governor’s announcement, said, “I am enormously honored by Gov. Brown’s nomination, and if confirmed, I look forward to serving the people of California on our state’s highest court.”

Stanford Provost John W. Etchemendy said, “Tino Cuellar has a depth of experience as a legal scholar and on federal policy that has made him invaluable to the Law School and the Freeman Spogli Institute.  We will sorely miss him at Stanford, but our loss is California’s gain. We are proud that the governor has recognized Tino’s expertise. I know he will serve the people of California with dedication and distinction.”

M. Elizabeth Magill, the dean of the Stanford Law School and the Richard E. Lang Professor of Law, said, “The governor has made a brilliant choice in nominating Tino Cuéllar to the California Supreme Court. We have been honored to call Tino a member of our faculty for over a decade.”

She added that beyond his many accomplishments as a lawyer, academic and policy maker, Cuéllar is “fair-minded and deeply committed to equal justice under the law. Although we are sad to see him go, this is a great day for California and the nation because a talented and compassionate individual will be serving the public as a member of the California Supreme Court.”

“Tino Cuéllar is a renowned scholar,” Gov. Brown said in a news release. “His vast knowledge and even temperament will – without question – add further luster to our highest court.”

Born in Mexico, Cuéllar eventually attended school in nearby Texas, walking across the border to a Catholic school in Brownsville. At age 14, he moved with his family to Imperial County, California, where he graduated from high school before going on to earn a bachelor’s degree at Harvard College, a juris doctor degree from Yale Law School and a doctorate in political science from Stanford.

About his role at FSI, Cuéllar said, “I have been privileged to lead this extraordinary institute, and to have worked with our faculty to strengthen our research capacity in our core areas of governance, security, international development and international health.”

This year, he said, the institute launched the International Policy Implementation Lab to engage faculty in real-world problems of global health, security and governance, and partnered with the Graduate School of Business to start the Stanford-wide Global Development and Poverty Initiative. Both programs have expanded FSI’s research impacts and campus partnerships, he added. Cuéllar is also proud of helping to provide new opportunities for Stanford students to do research abroad in places like India and Brazil through the Stanford Global Student Fellows program and partnerships with the Bing Overseas Studies Program.

“Our work in global development, nuclear security, and cybersecurity has also benefited from our progress this year in raising funds to support faculty, hiring key personnel and engaging more of the Stanford campus,” he said.

Ann Arvin, vice provost and dean of research, said, “As FSI director, Tino has brought a creative and strategic vision that will have a lasting impact on the research and education missions of the institute. While his departure is our loss, we know that his scholarly expertise, practical experience in government and commitment to excellence will be invaluable for the people of California.”

In other areas of his public service career, Cuéllar has served as special assistant to President Obama for Justice and Regulatory Policy, where he worked on issues such as enhancing food safety laws and sentencing reform, and was a co-chair of the Obama-Biden Transition Immigration Policy Working Group. He also worked as a law clerk to the Honorable Mary M. Schroeder at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

During the second term of the Clinton administration, Cuéllar handled financial crime regulatory issues as senior adviser to the Under Secretary at the U.S. Department of the Treasury.

From 2011 to 2013, Cuéllar co-chaired the National Equity and Excellence Commission, created by Congress to address the achievement gap in America’s public schools. He serves as a presidential appointee to the Council of the Administrative Conference of the United States and is a member of the board of directors for the bipartisan Constitution Project.

Cuéllar will fill the vacancy created by the retirement of the Honorable Marvin R. Baxter on Jan. 4, 2015. His nomination must be confirmed by the State Bar’s Commission on Judicial Nominees Evaluation before it can appear on the Nov. 4 ballot for voter approval.


Stanford Law School Policy Lab Students File Recommendations to Update National Environmental Policy Act

STANFORD, Calif., July 18, 2014 – Stanford Law School students this week filed detailed recommendations to the White House’s Council on Environmental Quality on how to update the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA), the nation’s foundational environmental law. Their submittal made a strong case for requiring better coordination among the project proponents, interested federal agencies, and important stakeholders so all of the key parties can identify major project flaws early, ensure that the environmental impact statements (EISs) will cover the key environmental issues (and not tangential issues that elongate the process and divert attention from the issues that matter) and that the process covers the full range of permitting and review needs.

The students worked closely with David J. Hayes, former deputy secretary of the Department of the Interior and a Distinguished Visiting Lecturer at Stanford Law School, in a unique policy practicum called “The National Environmental Policy Act: Pushing the Reset Button” to research the recommendations. They focused on major federal projects, for which NEPA requires the preparation of full EISs.

SLS Visiting Distinguished Lecturer David J. Hayes

SLS Visiting Distinguished Lecturer David J. Hayes

“The policy lab was an incredible experience, and a very different experience from other law school classes,” said Rebecca Vogel, JD ’15. “We learned about NEPA and the related agency regulations with an eye toward how to make the process work better in practice; that purpose really shaped our approach and added extra motivation to learn.  David’s experience in the field did not diminish his receptiveness to new ideas, and every student got the chance both to brainstorm reforms and to delve more deeply into the areas that intrigued us.”

In the submittal, students recommended that agencies be required to use modern information technology tools when preparing EISs, including searchable databases and geographic information system-based mapping. Together, these types of reforms should cut down on the preparation time for EISs, while producing better, more readable and relevant products.

“Students in the policy lab have made a major contribution to the current debate on how to improve implementation of one of our bedrock environmental laws,” said Hayes. “Their product will be an invaluable resource for the Council on Environmental Quality, legislators and other interested parties who are committed to improving the EIS process.”

In addition to Vogel, students involved in the practicum included Julia Forgie, JD ’14, Elizabeth Hook, JD ’15, Matthew Miller, JD ’15, and Laura E. Sullivan, JD ’15.

You can read more about the practicum and view the submittal in its entirety at: http://stanford.io/1nk5yTI.

Stanford Law School Center for Internet and Society Launches World Intermediary Liability Map to Educate the Public about Internet Regulation Worldwide

STANFORD, Calif., July 7, 2014—The Center for Internet and Society (CIS) at Stanford Law School launched a new online educational resource initiative called the “World Intermediary Liability Map,” or “WILMap”. The WILMap will educate the public about evolving Internet regulation affecting freedom of expression and user rights worldwide. The WILMap is spearheaded by Giancarlo Frosio, the Intermediary Liability Fellow at CIS.

Giancarlo Frosio - Resident Fellow - Intermediary Liability

Giancarlo Frosio – Resident Fellow – Intermediary Liability

“Legal liability regimes that put Internet platform companies at legal risk for users’ online activity can imperil free expression and innovation, even as governments seek to resolve very real policy problems,” said CIS Director of Civil Liberties, Jennifer Granick. CIS’ year-old initiative on intermediary liability explores the impact of intermediary liability on innovation and civil liberties.

“By their nature, Internet services are inherently global,” Frosio said. “But Internet companies face a real challenge understanding how those global regimes might regulate the services they offer to the public. This uncertainty can hurt users by potentially scaring companies away from providing innovative new services in certain markets. Additionally, companies may unnecessarily limit what users can do online, or engage in censorship-by-proxy to avoid uncertain retribution under unfamiliar laws.”

To this end, CIS has built the WILMap, a detailed English-language resource comprised of case law, statutes, and proposed laws related to intermediary liability worldwide. The WILMap allows visitors to the CIS website to select information on any country of interest through a graphical user interface. The map will enable the public to learn about intermediary liability regimes worldwide and to identify places where legal regimes balance—or fail to balance—regulatory goals with free expression and other civil liberties.

Today, the WILMap covers almost 50 jurisdictions in Africa, Asia, Australia, the Caribbean, Latin America and Europe. The WILMap is an ongoing project. In collaboration with a network of experts worldwide, CIS will continue to update and expand the map, with the goal of covering all jurisdictions.

This project has been made possible by a team of contributors, both individual researchers and institutions, providing the necessary information to set up the country pages. After the launch, CIS expects many other collaborators to join this project to create additional country pages, to update those already published, and to make the online resource as comprehensive and complete as possible.

To learn about intermediary liability rules worldwide, for a list of collaborators, and for information about joining the project, or otherwise contributing to the map, please visit the World Intermediary Liability Map or the CIS intermediary liability focus area.

About Giancarlo Frosio

Giancarlo F. Frosio is the Intermediary Liability Fellow at the Center for Internet and Society at Stanford Law School. Giancarlo is a qualified attorney with a doctoral degree (S.J.D.) in intellectual property law from Duke University Law School. Additionally, he holds an LL.M. with emphasis in intellectual property law from Duke Law School, an LL.M. in information technology and telecommunications law from Strathclyde University in Glasgow, and a law degree from Università Cattolica in Milan. His research focuses on copyright law, digitization, history of creativity, public domain, open access, Internet and user based creativity, intermediary liability of Information Service providers, network information economy, access to knowledge (A2K), and identity politics.

About Jennifer Granick

Jennifer Granick is the Director of Civil Liberties at the Stanford Center for Internet and Society. Jennifer returns to Stanford after working with the internet boutique firm of Zwillgen PLLC. Before that, she was the Civil Liberties Director at the Electronic Frontier Foundation. Jennifer practices, speaks and writes about computer crime and security, electronic surveillance, consumer privacy, data protection, copyright, trademark and the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. From 2001 to 2007, Jennifer was Executive Director of CIS and taught Cyberlaw, Computer Crime Law, Internet intermediary liability, and Internet law and policy.

About the Center for Internet & Society

Led by Faculty Director Professor Barbara van Schewick, the Center for Internet and Society (CIS) is a public interest technology law and policy program at Stanford Law School and a part of Law, Science and Technology Program. CIS brings together scholars, academics, legislators, students, programmers, security researchers, and scientists to study the interaction of new technologies and the law and to examine how the synergy between the two can either promote or harm public goods like free speech, innovation, privacy, public commons, diversity, and scientific inquiry. CIS strives to improve both technology and law, encouraging decision makers to design both as a means to further democratic values. CIS provides law students and the general public with educational resources and analyses of policy issues arising at the intersection of law, technology and the public interest.

About Stanford Law School
Stanford Law School (www.law.stanford.edu) is one of the nation’s leading institutions for legal scholarship and education. Its alumni are among the most influential decision makers in law, politics, business, and high technology. Faculty members argue before the Supreme Court, testify before Congress, produce outstanding legal scholarship and empirical analysis, and contribute regularly to the nation’s press as legal and policy experts. Stanford Law School has established a new model for legal education that provides rigorous interdisciplinary training, hands-on experience, global perspective and focus on public service, spearheading a movement for change.



IP Law Scholar Lisa Ouellette To Join Stanford Law School Faculty

Lisa Ouellette STANFORD, Calif., June 23, 2014 – Stanford Law School today announced that intellectual property law scholar Lisa L. Ouellette will join the Stanford Law School faculty, effective summer 2014.  Ouellette’s scholarship and research centers on intellectual property law, with a particular focus on the economic effect of both U.S. and international patent laws on innovation.

“Lisa Ouellette, who holds a PhD in Physics as well as a J.D., brings a great deal to the table in her study of intellectual property—she has legal and policy analytical skills, empirical sophistication, and scientific expertise. She has also already distinguished herself as a creative and prolific scholar,” said M. Elizabeth Magill, Richard E. Lang Professor of Law and Dean of Stanford Law School. “Lisa’s presence will deepen our well-deserved reputation as one of the centers for scholarship on law and technology policy. We are delighted she is joining us.”

Ouellette’s other publications include “Patent Experimentalism,” Virginia Law Review (2014); “Beyond the Patents-Prizes Debate,” Texas Law Review (2013); “The Google Shortcut to Trademark Law,” California Law Review (2013); “Do Patents Disclose Useful Information,” Harvard Journal of Law and Technology (2012); and “What Are the Sources of Patent Inflation? An Analysis of Federal Circuit Patentability Rulings,” Yale Law Journal Online (2011).

“As an entry-level professor, Lisa has already compiled an amazing publication record,” said Mark A. Lemley, William H. Neukom Professor of Law. “Her work spans IP theory, policy arguments, and empirical research. She will bring much-needed depth to our IP curriculum, and I very much look forward to working with her.”

“I’m delighted to have the opportunity to join the SLS faculty. There is no more exciting place to teach and do research in IP and innovation,” said Ouellette. “I look forward to joining a community of extraordinary faculty and students deeply engaged with IP law—a community marked by its commitment to innovation-related initiatives, its embrace of the broader entrepreneurial spirit of the university and Silicon Valley, and its emphasis not just on scholarly excellence but also on policy relevance and dedication to students.”

More on Lisa Ouellette

Prior to her faculty appointment at Stanford Law School, Ouellette was a Postdoctoral Associate in Law and Thomson Reuters Fellow at the Information Society Project at Yale Law School (2012-present) and clerked for the Honorable John M. Walker Jr. on the U.S. Court of Appeals (2013-present). She also clerked for the Honorable Timothy B. Dyk of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (2011-2012). She holds a JD (2011) from Yale Law School, where she was an Articles Editor of The Yale Law Journal, a Coker Fellow in Contract Law, and Director of the Yale Chapter of Universities Allied for Essential Medicines. She earned a Ph.D. (2008) in physics from Cornell as well as a B.A. (2002) in physics from Swarthmore College.

More on Stanford Law School

Stanford Law School (www.law.stanford.edu) is one of the nation’s leading institutions for legal scholarship and education. Its alumni are among the most influential decision makers in law, politics, business, and high technology. Faculty members argue before the Supreme Court, testify before Congress, produce outstanding legal scholarship and empirical analysis, and contribute regularly to the nation’s press as legal and policy experts. Stanford Law School has established a new model for legal education that provides rigorous interdisciplinary training, hands-on experience, global perspective, and focus on public service, spearheading a movement for change.

Law Students Encouraged To Focus on Who They Want To Be

Photo by GradImages

Photo by GradImages

“Stanford is not about where you are from, but where you want to be,” said Nikolas Maria Guggenberger as he addressed the crowd of more than 1,500 people gathered in Canfield Courtyard for Stanford Law School’s graduation ceremony on Saturday, June 14, 2014.

Over the course of the morning ceremony, the Class of 2014 was encouraged not just to focus on where they wanted to be, but who they wanted to be. They were urged to care, to look beyond achievements and most importantly to bring their best game to life.

 M. Elizabeth Magill, Richard E. Lang Professor of Law and Dean, kicked off the festivities by welcoming family and friends of the JD and Advanced Degree students and introducing the first of two student speakers, Guggenberger, who was selected by the international students to deliver remarks.

Nikolas Maria Guggenberger taking a "spelfie"

Nikolas Maria Guggenberger taking a “spelfie”

Assuring the crowd that, as a foreigner, the NSA was listening to his speech, Guggenberger started things off on a light note by joking about what he’d learned about American culture and demonstrating by stopping the speech to take a “spelfie” (described, and possibly invented, by Guggenberger as a selfie taken during a speech).

All kidding aside, Guggenberger also noted the challenges he and his peers have faced in adopting to a new culture. “It is hard to transfer from a system in which legal doctrine is everything and reality nothing, to one in which an empirical study may be the Holy Grail and doctrine seems to be the 17-ounce soda to Michael Bloomberg,” he said.

Guggenberger noted that those challenges were lessened by the experiences offered at SLS, such as the time he was invited to a surprise Q&A session with former President George W. Bush accompanied by Professor Condoleezza Rice, to the road trips taken with his classmates. Even the late-night library study sessions would be something Guggenberger would cherish about his time at SLS. In the end, Guggenberger said he learned that “Stanford is a mindset.”

Mark Feldman, selected on behalf of the JD students, took the podium next.

Mark Feldman Photo by GradImages

Mark Feldman
Photo by GradImages

Feldman had come to SLS from rural Morocco, where he had witnessed first-hand people’s need for an effective advocate. Upon arriving at SLS, however, he wasn’t sure how “vigorous debate about joinder rules and the rule against perpetuities” factored into that goal.

“I couldn’t see the connection between Rule 20, Pennoyer and the people I wanted to help. I couldn’t bring myself to give a damn,” Feldman said.

It was during his 1L summer when that began to change.

That summer, he visited three men on death row. Each had suffered from mental illness and had been severely abused as children, and they had all received terrible legal representation. Feldman asked one of the men what made a good attorney. The man responded, “A good attorney is someone who cares.”

This answer caused Feldman to reflect on the state of the legal profession and his legal education. “Time and again, I found myself meeting people in desperate, vulnerable places. And time and again, I saw the great, unmet need for legal services,” he said. “I learned that there are some terrible lawyers out there, and there are some terrible judges out there, and too many people are in prison—not because of the heinous nature of their crime, but because some lawyer or some judge or some agency official gave up on them, didn’t care enough, and more often than not they were too poor to hire someone to put up a fight. Suddenly I found myself caring—deeply—about every seemingly insignificant rule, down to the italicized periods—anything that contributed to this. And I remember thinking, this was exactly what I came to law school to learn.”

Associate Dean for Public Service and Public Interest Law Diane Chin   Photo by GradImages

Associate Dean for Public Service and Public Interest Law Diane Chin
Photo by GradImages

Following Feldman’s speech, class co-president’s Faris Ali Mohiuddin and Rachel Alicia McDaniel presented the awards for 2014. McDaniel received the Dean’s Award for Excellence in Service to Stanford Law School and Diane Chin, associate dean for public service and public interest law, received the Staff Appreciation Award.

Norman Spaulding, the Nelson Bowman Sweitzer and Marie B. Sweitzer Professor of Law, was then presented with the John Bingham Hurlbut Award for Excellence in Teaching.

In his speech, Spaulding stressed the need for students to see beyond the quid pro quo of achievement. “It is easy for a day like this to slip away, to pass too quickly, to live on more in the pictures that will be taken than in your active memory,” he said. “One reason for the fragility of this moment is that, like so many lawyers before you, you are by habit of mind and years of repetition all too well accustomed to burying one achievement in the construction debris of the next to come.”

Professor Norman Spaulding  Photo by GradImages

Professor Norman Spaulding
Photo by GradImages

Spaulding urged students to take the time to slow down and celebrate their achievements. “I do admire how connected you are to each other, but your generation is especially prone not to pause, not to stop to allow nothing to happen.”Citing the famous Seinfeld episode where Jerry and George come to the realization that a show “about nothing” might actually be something, “there is insight to be found in the emptiness of open observation and reflection,” Spaulding said. “Freed from machines and direct labor the deeper faculties of the mind – the original and still most powerful electronic device you own – light up.”

Spaulding clarified that it is not that he thinks students should seek to do nothing, “rather that today is a very good day to pause and think seriously about your disposition toward doing, particularly your disposition toward achievement,” he said. “You are to be lawyers – much of what you will do, much of what you accomplish, certainly the most important things you accomplish as lawyers, will not be for yourselves in the first instance, but rather for the clients you serve. We represent the interest of others. So we need to be particularly conscious of our disposition toward achievement.”

In closing, Spaulding told students to recognize the moment they were in.

“Wherever you think you are going, wherever you want to be, right now you are nowhere but here, surrounded by people who love you and have nurtured you – people who, like me, are more proud of you than words can explain.”

Dean Magill closed the ceremony with the charge to the class.

Dean M. Elizabeth Magill  Photo by GradImages

Dean M. Elizabeth Magill
Photo by GradImages

“Given your talent, your spirit, your grit, your creativity, you should, you must, and you are obligated to pursue big dreams,” she said.

Magill challenged the class to bring their best game. Citing athlete Michael Phelps’ intense training regimen, she explained that the graduates had to likewise ‘train’ to live the lives they wanted, and that meant they had to take care of themselves.

“If it is obvious that high-stakes performances require intense training to assure that the performer is at her best, it should be just as obvious that the goal of living a meaningful life requires that too,” she said. “If you want to do work that matters, and build a satisfying life, you have to bring your best game.   And the simple truth is that you cannot do that unless you take care of yourself. That requires you to both understand and nurture yourself.”

Magill continued that that included understanding one’s limits, specifically the superhero myth. “This is the view that you can (and should) do everything. That doing more is always better, that there are no limits to your capacity. This is not a good training technique.”

Magill then asked the class to think about their own role models. “Do you think that any of them could have made the difference they have made without tending to themselves, without doing the equivalent of training?” she asked. “I don’t think so. They brought their best game to life and that allowed them to do what they did. So please, when you are not tending to yourself, remember that.”

You can view the entire album of SLS Graduation photos at http://stanford.io/1q4GQW8. To view videos from the ceremony go to: http://stanford.io/1jwIkDk.