Chief Justice John Roberts to Present Bellwood Lecture March 13

Monday, February 9 2009

Written by Joni Kirk Chief Justice John Roberts to Present Bellwood Lecture March 13 MOSCOW, Idaho – Chief Justice of the United States John G. Roberts, Jr. will present the University of Idaho's Sherman J. Bellwood Memorial Lecture on Friday, March 13, at 4 p.m. The lecture will be given in the Student Union Building Ballroom, located at 709 Deakin Ave. in Moscow. The event is free and open to the public. Seating is on a first-come, first-served basis. Overflow seating is available in the university's Borah Theater, also in the Student Union Building. "The Bellwood Lecture series connects the University of Idaho with leaders of high distinction in law and the judiciary," said Don Burnett, dean of the University of Idaho's College of Law. "This year, the College celebrates 100 years of educating lawyers for careers in the legal profession, business and public service. We are proud to host the Chief Justice of the United States on the historic occasion of our centennial," Burnett said. Roberts received his juris doctorate degree from Harvard Law School in 1979. He served as a law clerk for Judge Henry J. Friendly of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit from 1979-80 and as a law clerk for then-Associate Justice William H. Rehnquist of the U.S. Supreme Court during the 1980 term. He served as special assistant to the Attorney General in the U.S. Department of Justice from 1981-82; associate counsel to President Ronald Reagan in the White House Counsel’s Office from 1982-86; and principal deputy solicitor general in the U.S. Department of Justice from 1989-93. From 1986-89 and 1993–2003, he practiced law in Washington, D.C. He was appointed to the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit in 2003. President George W. Bush nominated him as Chief Justice of the United States, and he took his seat on September 29, 2005. "The University of Idaho has a personal connection to Chief Justice Roberts," said Burnett. "He and Richard H. Seamon, now professor and associate dean at the University of Idaho College of Law, were colleagues in the Office of the U.S. Solicitor General from 1989 to 1993. During that time they both represented the United States in cases before the Supreme Court.” Now entering its 13th year, the Bellwood Lecture Series has brought prominent leaders to Idaho to discuss current issues of justice and law. Other Bellwood lecturers have included: U.S. Supreme Court Justices Sandra Day O’Connor, Antonin Scalia and Ruth Bader Ginsburg; former U.S. Attorney General Janet Reno; former U.S. Solicitor General Kenneth W. Starr; U.S. Senators Gary Hart and Alan Simpson; Minnesota Supreme Court Chief Justice Alan C. Page; and the late Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter David Halberstam of the New York Times. The lecture is named after the late Sherman J. Bellwood, an Idaho native and Idaho District Court judge of 20 years. After receiving an undergraduate degree from the University of Idaho in 1939, Judge Bellwood went on to law school, served in the military, practiced law and became president of the Idaho State Bar before entering the judiciary. He funded this endowed lectureship at the College of Law. It is the largest endowed lectureship at the university. Serving Idaho since 1909, the College of Law has been recognized nationally for its distinctive programs, including its clinical legal education, pro bono service, diversity initiatives, and cross-disciplinary fields of study, including environmental and natural resources law, business law and entrepreneurship, advocacy and dispute resolution, and Native American law. For more information about the College of Law and its legacy, visit
# # #
About the University of Idaho Founded in 1889, the University of Idaho is the state’s flagship higher-education institution and its principal graduate education and research university, bringing insight and innovation to the state, the nation and the world. University researchers attract nearly $100 million in research grants and contracts each year; the University of Idaho is the only institution in the state to earn the prestigious Carnegie Foundation ranking for high research activity. The university’s student population includes first-generation college students and ethnically diverse scholars. Offering more than 150 degree options in 10 colleges, the university combines the strengths of a large university with the intimacy of small learning communities. For information, visit Media Contact: Joni Kirk, University Communications, (208) 885-7725, Photo is available at

About the University of Idaho
The University of Idaho helps students to succeed and become leaders. Its land-grant mission furthers innovative scholarly and creative research to grow Idaho's economy and serve a statewide community. From its main campus in Moscow, Idaho, to 70 research and academic locations statewide, U-Idaho emphasizes real-world application as part of its student experience. U-Idaho combines the strength of a large university with the intimacy of small learning communities. It is home to the Vandals. For information, visit