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Law School Class Notes

Class of 1977

    • 01/10/2018

      Cliff Bentz JD ’77 was named the Ontario Area Chamber of Commerce Man of the Year for his work in the Oregon Legislature as the House District 60 representative. In particular, he was lauded for his efforts on a transportation bill that is funding a reload facility in Malheur County. Bentz, who has a long resume of community and statewide service, focused on water and tax law while at Lewis & Clark.

  • Steven Mitchell Carpenter died July 16, 2016, after a short illness. He was 61 years old.

    Steven was born April 8, 1955, in Miles City, Montana. He attended The Dalles High School in Oregon. After receiving a bachelor’s degree in French, he worked as the assistant regional director of public affairs for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in Portland. He then earned a JD, following which he worked in private practice, focusing on products liability and professional malpractice defense.

    Steven joined the Professional Liability Fund (PLF) as a claims attorney in 2000. He spoke and wrote widely on lawyer liability issues, but will be most remembered for his compassion for lawyers facing malpractice claims. Throughout his professional career, Steven made many friends and enjoyed working with many wonderful colleagues.

    A former member of the Portland Gay Men’s Chorus, Steven was an avid supporter of all the arts. His passions included cooking, traveling (especially to France), and his Dobermans.

    Steven is survived by his parents, Don and Juanita Carpenter; his brothers, Mike and Lynn Carpenter; nephew Kyle Carpenter, with his wife Jennifer and their son Conley; nephew Cory Carpenter, with his wife Karyn; and numerous aunts, uncles, and cousins, as well as countless friends.

  • Constance “Connie” Emerson Crooker died April 10, 2015, at her home. She was 68 years old.

    Connie was born July 23, 1946, in Portland, Maine, to Reverend Charles W. Crooker and Elizabeth (MacGregor) Crooker Bates. She earned a BA from Reed College.

    Connie established a criminal defense practice focusing on the Hispanic community and led efforts in Oregon to professionalize the use of interpreters in the courts. She was also the first woman in Oregon to contract with the state to run a Public Defenders office, serving the community of Tillamook for many years.

    Following her retirement Connie avidly pursued a wide array of interests, including skiing, hiking, camping, dancing, singing, and playing the guitar. She also relished traveling abroad and studying foreign languages. One of her passions was writing. Connie wrote and published several books, including Melanoma Mama: On Life, Death, and Tent Camping, in which she shared her experiences on a solo cross-country trip to celebrate her unexpected reprieve from ongoing cancer treatments, and Doc Jackson’s Letters Home: A Combat Medic’s 1968 Letters From Vietnam, which was released on April 30, 2015, the 40th anniversary of the end of the Vietnam conflict.

    Survivors include her three siblings and their spouses: Carol and Deane Farnsworth, Charles and Adrian Crooker, and Catherine Crooker and Griff O’Brien. Connie
    is also survived by numerous nieces and nephews.

    • 09/01/2013

      Was appointed to serve as chair of the Realtor Commercial Alliance of the Northern Virginia Association of in Virginia, Maryland, and Washington, D.C. Dillow serves as an adjunct fellow for the Discovery Institute’s technology and democracy project, and has a background that includes 25 years of service with Verizon Corporation, where he served for more than a decade as its vice president of federal government relations. A native Oregonian, Dillow served as assistant public utility commissioner for the State of Oregon during the administrations of Governors Tom McCall, Bob Straub, and Vic Atiyeh. He is also a former news reporter for The Oregonian.

    • 09/01/2011

      Retired and closed his law office. He practiced for 32 years before Washington County courts, and maintained offices in Beaverton and near Washington Square in Tigard. A solo practitioner, he emphasized business, real estate, and probate, but also practiced domestic relations, criminal defense, and juvenile law.

    • 10/07/2016

      Was named “Lawyer of the Year” in health law in the 2017 issue of The Best Lawyers in America for his work in health care law. A shareholder at the Lansing, Michigan, firm of Foster Swift Collins & Smith PC, Kraus was also named in the 2016 issue of Michigan Super Lawyers magazine.

    • 07/17/2018

      Alan “Al” Larsen JD ’77 is both the general counsel and the head of Congressional and Public Affairs for the Office of Inspector General at the Environmental Protection Agency. He reports that he is working under the ancient curse “May you live in interesting times.” Larsen’s role is to ensure that EPA officials, including political appointees at the top of the organization, conduct their activities and lead the agency within the boundaries of the law. Much of this has recently played out in public and before Congress. Larsen says that the barrage of accusations and counter-narratives is constant and deafening, and his shop has to sort it all out and then act—which it has done repeatedly in recent months.

    • 12/21/2016

      Was selected as one of four recipients of the American Bar Association Commission on Racial and Ethnic Diversity in the Profession’s 2017 Spirit of Excellence Award. Nagae practices at the Portland firm Peggy Nagae Consulting, which she founded in 1988. She also serves as program director for the Center for Asian Pacific American Women. Nagae has served as president of the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association, vice-chair of the ABA Commission on Racial and Ethnic Diversity, president of the Asian Bar Association of Washington, and board member for Asian Americans Advancing Justice. She represented Minoru Yasui in his successful bid to reopen his World War II Japanese American curfew case and have his conviction vacated. In 2013, Nagae spearheaded Yasui’s successful nomination for a Presidential Medal of Freedom, which President Obama awarded posthumously in November 2015. In 2016, Nagae led the effort to create a permanent Minoru Yasui Day (March 28) in Oregon.

    • 09/01/2013

      Was the chief defense attorney 
for the high-profile Portland trial of the Somali American accused of trying to ignite a weapon of mass destruction at the city’s 2010 holiday tree-lighting ceremony. Sady is the longest serving employee in the Oregon Federal Public Defender’s Office.

    • 02/01/2015

      Was inducted as a fellow into the American College of Trial Lawyers. Sand is a litigation partner at Miller Nash.

    • 09/01/2014

      Was elected to the board of directors for the Multnomah County Bar Association. An active member of the bar since 1977, Sand was president of the foundation arm of the organization in 2010. He is a litigation partner at Miller Nash.

    • 09/01/2013

      Officially retired from his position as Lake County circuit court judge, but will likely continue to serve as a senior circuit court pro tem until Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber fills the vacancy. Simpson took office July 1, 1990, after 13 years in private practice. He grew up in Lakeview, Oregon, and graduated from Lakeview High School in 1969.

    • 09/01/2014

      Joined the Multnomah Bar Foundation board of directors. In his private practice, he focuses almost exclusively on tobacco litigation.


    • 09/01/2011

      Was inducted as a fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers during an annual meeting in Washington, D.C.

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