The 153rd Commencement of the George Washington University Law School was held on Sunday, May 17, 2020. Virtual events took place throughout the weekend and included the Academic Awards Ceremony, the University Commencement, and the GW Law Diploma Ceremony.
GW Law’s first-ever virtual Law School Diploma Ceremony honored the Class of 2020. Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs Emily Hammond announced the commencement. Interim Dean Christopher A. Bracey gave a virtual welcome address to family members, friends, and members of the law school community.
Damilola Arowolaju, President of the GW Law Student Bar Association, addressed his fellow graduates and presented five awards to faculty and staff. Senior Associate Dean Emily Hammond received the Distinguished Associate Dean Award. The Distinguished Faculty Service Award, voted on by the graduating class, was received by Professor Sonia M. Suter. Information Specialist Bobby Wallis received the Distinguished Staff Award. The Michael D. Cooley Memorial Award was presented to graduate AJ Link. Senior Associate Dean for Administrative Affairs Hank R. Molinengo received the Student Bar Association Distinguished Service Award. Interim Dean Bracey presented the Distinguished Adjunct Faculty Service Award to Aram A. Gavoor.
More than a dozen of GW Law's faculty and members of the administration collaborated for a commencement address that offered advice and well wishes, in a "last lecture" for the graduates.
Interim Dean Bracey then recognized the graduating class, and each member’s name scrolled across the screen, beginning with more than 400 JD graduates. The recipient of the John Bell Larner Award, Paul J. Aylward II, was listed first for the highest cumulative average in the JD graduating class. Steven W. Peters, the recipient of the Anne Wells Branscomb Award for the highest cumulative average in the part-time program followed. The names of the 130 LLM graduates were then displayed, then the two SJD graduates, and finally three MSL graduates.
Learn more about the class of 2020 in the virtual student yearbook, where each graduate is highlighted digitally with an individual profile, including a photo and quote or memory. Also, read notes from members of the faculty and staff offering their congratulations and best wishes to members of the graduating class.