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California Western Second Year Students Shine at National Mock Trial Competition

Grant Porter (2nd from left) and Matthew Hobson (2nd from right) with Thomas Tang Competition judges

Two California Western students took second place at the regional round of the Thomas Tang National Moot Court Competition at McGeorge School of Law in Sacramento on October 23-25. 

Second-year students Matt W. Hobson and Grant P. Porter also won “best brief” and will travel to the national competition in Scottsdale, Arizona on November 6.

“This is the second year in a row that we have gone to the nationals of the Thomas Tang Competition, as well as winning best brief,” said Professor Mario G. Conte, faculty advisor to California Western’s Moot Court Honors Board trial team. 

“Matt and Grant are both rookies right out of appellate summer camp,” Conte said, highlighting the strength of California Western’s training and coaching for its competition teams.

“The coaching we received from our Legal Skills Professors, the Appellate Boot Camp last summer, and from our current coach, Reem Khalil, was phenomenal,” said Hobson.  “As a result, I never felt we lacked the skill or tools necessary to be effective competitors. We will continue to use those skills and tools at the National Competition in Arizona, where the competition will be much more fierce. Win or lose, it feels great to be included in the history of the many awesome Moot Court competitors this school has produced.” 

“Our team’s success is a reflection of a large group effort," said Porter. "We are excited to continue represent California Western at the National competition in Arizona in two weeks.” 

Conte also gave recognition to the team’s coaches, Reem S. Khalil ’13 and Franciesca D. Balerio ’12.

“These recent California Western graduates are already making a mark as seasoned coaches,” Conte added.

The Thomas Tang National Moot Court Competition is sponsored by the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA). It honors the late Judge Thomas Tang, a champion of individual rights, an advocate for the advancement of minority attorneys, and an ardent supporter of NAPABA and the moot court competition. Judge Tang served on the United States Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals from 1977 until his passing in 1995. Judge Tang's wife, Dr. Pearl Tang, continues the legacy and participates every year.

For more information about the Moot Court Honors Board, click here.