Margaret Kamm Wins the 2017 Ilana Diamond Rovner Appellate Advocacy Competition

Margaret Kamm, a second-year student at Chicago-Kent College of Law at Illinois Tech, has won the 26th annual Ilana Diamond Rovner Appellate Advocacy Competition, sponsored by the law school’s Moot Court Honor Society. The competition is named for Chicago-Kent graduate Ilana Diamond Rovner, judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit.

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From left: Jack Amaro, Pauline Panayi, Margaret Kamm, and Blake Thompson

This year, students argued Carpenter v. United States, a case that presents a question about the scope of Fourth Amendment protection against unreasonable searches in the digital age. At issue is whether the Fourth Amendment permits the government’s warrantless acquisition of historical cell phone records revealing the approximate location and movements of the cell phone user.

In the final round of competition, Kamm argued against Pauline Panayi ’19. Placing first, Kamm received the Ilana Diamond Rovner Award for Outstanding Appellate Advocate. Placing second, Panayi received the Edmund Burke Advocacy Award.

Kamm graduated magna cum laude from Carthage College in Wisconsin with a bachelor’s degree in classical studies. She is a member of Chicago-Kent Law Review and is serving as an extern this semester for the Honorable Bertina Lampkin of the Illinois Appellate Court through the law school’s Judicial Externship Program.

Second-year student Blake Thompson won the Fay Clayton Award for Outstanding Oral Advocate. Clayton, who graduated with honors from Chicago-Kent in 1978, was a founding shareholder of the Chicago law firm of Robinson, Curley and Clayton, P.C., until she retired in 2016.

Second-year student Jack Amaro received the Ralph L. Brill Award for Best Brief. Ralph Brill, who taught at Chicago-Kent from 1961 through late 2016, founded the law school’s legal research and writing program and its award-winning moot court program.

The final round of the competition was judged by a distinguished panel that included the Honorable Ilana Diamond Rovner; the Honorable Ann Claire Williams of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit; and Chicago-Kent’s Kimberly D. Bailey.

Established in 1992, the Ilana Diamond Rovner Program in Appellate Advocacy provides training for students in Chicago-Kent’s Moot Court Honor Society. Students in the program complete intensive coursework in appellate litigation, represent the law school in appellate advocacy tournaments throughout the United States, and are eligible to participate in the Ilana Diamond Rovner Competition.