Chief Justice of Virginia Supreme Court Awards First Prize in Writing Competition

Regent Law recently welcomed long-time friend and Jurist-in-Residence Virginia Supreme Court Chief Justice Leroy Rountree Hassell, Sr. to campus.

During Regent’s annual Jurist-in-Residence week, March 9-13, Justice Hassell spoke to campus leaders, lectured on various topics in classes, and joined students for meals to offer insight into the value of legal education and the rigors of the legal profession.

The week’s activities were highlighted by Hassell’s presentation of a $500 award to second-year law student Benjamin Eastburn as top prize in the second annual Honorable Leroy Rountree Hassell, Sr. Writing Competition.

Eastburn’s student note, Hold That Line! The Proper Establishment Clause Analysis for Military Public Prayers, was written in response to improper applications of current Establishment Clause tests to a military context. In his note, Eastburn purports to refute the use of those tests and provide a proper analytical framework for public prayer in the military.

A graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, Eastburn deployed twice to the Middle East and knows firsthand the importance of prayer and religion while on deployment. In addition to the cash award, his note will be published in an upcoming issue of the Regent Law Review.

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