After two weeks of intense competition, the final round of the Faust F. Rossi Moot Court Competition took place February 7 in the MacDonald Moot Court Room before a panel of esteemed federal judges. The finalists, Zoe Jones '15, representing the petitioner, Mary Hart, and Ryan Mansell '15, representing the respondent, Finn Alley, argued this year's problem, which asked whether or not the Fourteenth Amendment prohibits states from (1) defining marriage as a legal union between one man and one woman, and (2) treating as void same-sex marriages from other jurisdictions.
For an hour and a half, the finalists gave spirited defenses of their respective positions while fielding questions from the following judges: Hon. Rosemary Pooler, U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit; Hon. Michael Chagares, U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit; Hon. Susan Mollway, chief judge, U.S. District Court for the District of Hawaii; Hon. Sharon Gleason, U.S. District Court for the District of Alaska; and Hon. Shelly Dick, U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Louisiana. After a hard-fought contest, the judges proclaimed Ryan Mansell the winner.
Runner-up Zoe Jones was declared the winner of the Louis Kaiser Best Brief Competition. Amanda Duckworth '16 and Natasha Menell '16 were finalists for Best Brief.
Zach Dugan '15, chancellor of the Moot Court Board offered congratulations to all participants: "You did an extraordinary job and the Moot Court Board hopes to see you in the news as all-star litigators or in future competitions!"
The winner of the oral competition was awarded $500; the runner up received $250. The Best Brief Competition winner received $500. The awards are funded through generous donations from alumni.
The Faust F. Rossi Moot Competition is funded annually through an endowment established by the following alumni: Kevin Arquit, John Clarke, Paul Crotty, Marc Goldberg, Bruce Goldstein, John Mangan, Susan Robfogel, Stephen Robinson, Jonathan Weld, and Michael Wolfson. The prize for Best Brief is funded through an endowed gift from Louis Kaiser (LL.B. 1921).