Alumni Weekend 2022 celebrates community

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Maryland Carey Law was abuzz with excitement Sept. 8-10 when hundreds of alumni and friends returned for the first in-person Alumni Weekend since 2019. The weather cooperated for events in the courtyard, while other gatherings took place in the spacious atrium and historic Westminster Hall. 

The celebration also marked the first Alumni Weekend at Maryland Carey Law with Renée McDonald Hutchins presiding as dean. At the Dean’s Welcome Reception on Friday evening, Hutchins received thunderous applause when she told the crowd, “I want to share with you how ecstatic I am to be the new dean of this amazing law school.” 

There was also a lot of clapping at the Alumni Honors Banquet where U.S. Sen. Benjamin L. Cardin ’67 (left) received the Lifetime Achievement Award. The other award recipients were Julia Doyle Bernhardt ’81 with the Distinguished Graduate Award, the Hon. Sally D. Adkins ’75 with the Mary Ellen Barbera ’84 Judicial Excellence Award, LtCol Robert G. Bracknell ’99 with the Benjamin L. Cardin ’67 Public Service Award, and Anya A. Marino ’12 with the Rising Star Award. 

Another highlight of the weekend was the Golden Graduates Luncheon for those who graduated 50 or more years ago. This special event welcomed the classes of 1970, 1971, and 1972 to the distinguished group. Stuart Salsbury ’71 (right) and Roberta Gill ’72 offered fond recollections from their law school years, and 3L Junior Dufort expressed gratitude for alumni support and mentorship. 

As well as honoring the most experienced alumni, Maryland Carey Law feted the most recent graduates at an event hosted by the Maryland Carey Law School Club (MCLSC), the law school’s leadership giving society. Members of the classes of 2020, 2021, and 2022 were treated to a crab feast in the courtyard with welcome remarks from Letam Duson ’13 (pictured with Dean Hutchins above), one of the society’s co-chairs. “We are delighted to provide an opportunity to bring together so many members of our community as we celebrate the classes of 2020, 2021, and 2022,” she said, “and the enduring strength of our alumni community.”  

On Saturday, alumni enjoyed a family-friendly picnic, with food, beer, and wine; face painting; and lawn games.  

The festivities culminated on Saturday night with milestone reunion dinners for the classes of 1970, 1971, 1972, 1975, 1976, 1977, 1980, 1981, 1982, 1985, 1986, 1987, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1995, 1996, 1997, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2015, 2016, and 2017. 

Several programs at Maryland Carey Law are also celebrating milestones this year. The Business Law Program marks its 10th anniversary and the Intellectual Property and Entrepreneurship Clinic has reached the 20-year mark, as has the Center for Dispute Resolution (C-DRUM). Those groups, as well as Environmental Law; Immigration Law; Law and Health Care; and Women, Leadership, and Equality all hosted smaller gatherings on Friday afternoon where graduates and faculty reconnected. 

At the conclusion of the weekend, Assistant Dean for Development and Alumni Relations Shara Boonshaft ’02, who was celebrating her own 20th Reunion, said she was pleased with alumni response. “Alumni Weekend 2022 was a huge success,” she commented. “We have been waiting a long time to bring our community together in person, and we can’t wait to do it again next year.” 

Alumni Weekend 2023, which will include reunion celebrations for the classes ending in 3 and 8, will take place at the law school March 30- April 1, 2023.