VERMILLION, S.D. - The Native American Law Student Association at the University of South Dakota School of Law was chosen NALSA Chapter of the Year by the National NALSA during the organization;s annual meeting April 10 in Albuquerque, N.M. National NALSA's annual meeting is held in conjunction with the Federal Bar Association's Indian Law Conference. There are nearly 40 NALSA chapters in eight areas throughout the country.
''This is a truly impressive and well-deserved accomplishment,'' said John Glover, J.D., associate dean for American Indian programs at the USD School of Law. ''Special recognition goes to the chapter's fine leadership, which includes President J.R. LaPlante, Vice President John Wallace, Secretary Elysia Hassebroek, Treasurer Shaun Eastman and our exceptional faculty advisers, professors Patrice Kunesh and Frank Pommersheim.''
The Chapter of the Year award is presented to the chapter demonstrating exceptional excellence in pro bono legal assistance, membership, community recognition and overall commitment to promoting the mission goals of National NALSA. During the 2007 - 08 academic year, USD NALSA hosted its inaugural Indian Law Moot Court Tournament along with USD Law School's 10th Biennial Indian Law Symposium. The 15-member group also awarded its first Indian law student scholarship; donated hundreds of books to a tribal juvenile detention center; sent members to the Federal Bar Association's Indian Law Conference and the National NALSA Moot Court Tournament; and provided legal services to tribal members in South Dakota in conjunction with the offices and attorneys of Dakota Plains Legal Services.
For information about USD NALSA, visit www.usd.edu/law/student_resources/nalsa.cfm. For more information on the USD School of Law American Indian Law Program, visit www.usd.edu/law/AI_Law.cfm.