UNH Law Co-Sponsors Concord Appearance by Justice David Souter
Retired U.S. Supreme Court Justice David H. Souter will take the stage on Friday, September 14 at 6 p.m. at the Capitol Center for the Arts for the opening event of Constitutionally Speaking, a pilot project aimed at engaging New Hampshire citizens in spirited, yet civil, dialogue about the nation's founding document. The evening program will feature a conversation between Justice Souter and Margaret Warner, the Emmy award-winning senior correspondent with PBS's nightly NewsHour, who began her journalism career in New Hampshire at Foster's Daily Democrat and the Concord Monitor.
The civic engagement initiative is a collaboration of the NH Supreme Court Society, the University of New Hampshire School of Law, the NH Humanities Council, and the newly established NH Institute for Civic Education. Justice Souter has been instrumental in the creation of the Institute, which will provide professional development opportunities to New Hampshire teachers so that civics education becomes a reality for all public school students beginning in Kindergarten and continuing through graduation from high school.
"The partners in this project are delighted that two such distinguished individuals will help frame a statewide conversation about how the Constitution retains its relevance 225 years after its adoption," said Susan Leahy, board president of the NH Supreme Court Society and facilitator of the task force responsible for creating the NH Institute for Civic Education. "New Hampshire has no constitutional scholar more eminent than Justice Souter, and it goes without saying that residents of his home state, and in particular public school teachers and students, will benefit greatly from his insights. We are also very excited that Ms. Warner is returning to her journalistic roots to participate in the project's launch."
The Sept. 14 event is the first of several components of Constitutionally Speaking. On Saturday, November 17, a symposium will be held at UNH Law to both elaborate on themes explored in
the opening conversation and prepare community leaders, parents, and public school teachers to lead topic-related discussions in communities and classrooms throughout the state.
"As the state's central pillar in legal education, UNH Law is eager to move beyond its Concord campus and inspire a deeper understanding of constitutional issues within the broader New Hampshire community," said Dean John Broderick. "Constitutionally Speaking is one such effort, and the law school looks forward to introducing teachers and citizens to several exciting legal thinkers in November so that they may then facilitate discussions in their schools, their homes, and their communities."