By LEON SCIOSCIA
In celebration of its 175th anniversary, the Law Library of Congress is launching a series of exciting and informative events designed to promote its unique services to a broader audience as well as to cultivate support for its many programs. To kick off the yearlong celebration, the American Bar Association (ABA) and the American Association of Law Libraries (AALL) honored the Law Library on Jan. 18 with a special ceremony held in the Members’ Room in the Thomas Jefferson Building. The event commemorated a resolution passed by the ABA House of Delegates recognizing the Law Library’s anniversary and an AALL presidential proclamation to mark the occasion.
To increase awareness and understanding of the relevance of law in our daily lives, the Law Library has created a new Legal Film Series and a Speakers Series. Sponsored jointly with Tufts University, the Legal Film Series features films with a significant legal theme and includes a discussion by a panel of experts on the featured topic. The speaker series highlights the theme “National Security and the Rule of Law” and features renowned speakers from the Supreme Court, Congress, academic circles and the media, among others. The first speaker will be former Oklahoma Representative Mickey Edwards on March 29.
The Law Library of Congress and the Burton Foundation will again recognize excellence in legal writing at the June 4 Burton Awards dinner that will feature broadcast journalist Bob Schieffer as the guest speaker.
July 14, the actual date of the Law Library’s founding, will be celebrated with an Anniversary Gala in the Great Hall of the Library’s Thomas Jefferson Building. The event, to feature members of Congress and an internationally renowned speaker, will recognize the Law Library’s contributions in promoting the understanding of law and its relevance to today’s global legal environment. Jeffrey Toobin, CNN legal analyst for CNN Worldwide, will be the honorary chairman of the gala.
The Law Library will hold a staff reunion on Oct. 18, 2007, to honor the individuals who have contributed their professional time and talents. Current and former employees will be recognized for their dedication. Attendees will learn about the Law Library’s recent achievements and future plans. An accompanying photography exhibition will feature images of past and current Law Librarians of Congress, employees and the various locations of the Law Library throughout its history.
The Friends of the Law Library of Congress, a nonprofit organization created to support the Law Library in promoting a better understanding of the law, will conclude the year’s celebration with the revival of the Wickersham Award dinner on December 6. The event will honor an individual who has demonstrated active participation in and contributions to the legal profession.
In addition to marking this milestone occasion, these celebratory events will also provide an opportunity to reflect on the past and explore the global legal issues that face the Law Library of Congress in the 21st century.