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Lawyering professor wins university teaching award

Monday, August 20, 2018

Recognition is first at KU to honor clinical faculty and academic staff

LAWRENCE — University of Kansas School of Law Professor Pam Keller has given thousands of Jayhawk lawyers a solid foundation in legal writing and oral advocacy. Her efforts were recognized last week when she received the inaugural Bob & Kathie Taylor Excellence in Teaching Award at the KU Teaching Summit.

“I love teaching our students, and I work to be better at it each and every year,” Keller said. “To be recognized at the university level for those efforts is very special to me.”

The Bob & Kathie Taylor Excellence in Teaching Award is the first KU teaching award that recognizes clinical faculty and academic staff.

“To be part of the first trio of professors to receive this award adds to the honor,” Keller said. “I’m proud and grateful that the Taylor family chose to recognize the deep commitment clinical faculty have to our teaching mission.”

Keller was nominated by KU Law Dean Stephen Mazza.

“Pam possesses an exceptional record of national and university service, while also maintaining an impressive scholarly presence,” Mazza said.

In 1999, Keller was among the first four instructors hired to implement KU Law’s Lawyering Skills Program. She has directed the program since 2006.

“Much of the program’s success is due to her leadership,” Mazza said. “Professor Keller not only does an excellent job of teaching students key lawyering skills, but also is a model for all KU Law faculty to learn from.”

Keller directs the school’s Judicial Field Placement Program, oversees its nationally ranked Moot Court Program and coaches its National Moot Court Competition team. She has published several articles related to effective legal writing and has given more than 20 presentations.

She previously served as president of the KU Faculty Senate and chair of the Council of Faculty Senate Presidents. She routinely sits on search committees for university and law school positions.

Keller has chaired the Association of Legal Writing Directors Teaching Workshop Committee and facilitated two teaching workshops for legal writing faculty. She served on the planning committees for several regional conferences and chaired the planning committee for the most recent Central States Legal Writing Conference, hosted by KU Law.

“We are truly fortunate to have her as a member of the KU community,” Mazza said.

Anne Patterson of the architecture department and Susan Marshall of the psychology department also received the Bob & Kathie Taylor Excellence in Teaching Award. The KU Teaching Summit is co-sponsored by the Center for Teaching Excellence, Office of the Provost and KU Medical Center.