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University Relations

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May 24, 2006
Contact: Crystal Mai, School of Law, (785) 864-9208.

KU School of Law honors three alumni at graduation ceremony

LAWRENCE — The University of Kansas School of Law honored N. William Hines, James W. Paddock and Christopher Smith as distinguished alumni at the school’s hooding ceremony May 21 at the Lied Center.

N. William “Bill” Hines was raised in Olathe and attended Baker University on a basketball scholarship. He received his bachelor’s with honors in 1958 and was awarded an honorary Doctor of Laws degree in 1999 from Baker. He graduated first in his class from the KU School of Law in 1961.

Hines continued his law study as a graduate student at Harvard Law School, where he also worked as a teaching fellow. In 1962, he joined the law faculty at the University of Iowa and directed the school’s Agricultural Law Center for 10 years. He was elected president of the University of Iowa faculty senate in 1973, the same year he was named the Joseph F. Rosenfield Chair in Law, a position he still holds.

Named dean of Iowa’s College of Law in 1976, he served continuously until 2004; his 28 years was a record tenure for a law dean at the college. While dean, he nearly doubled the size of the Iowa law faculty while keeping the student enrollment level; oversaw the planning and construction of a new law building; helped boost the school’s endowment; supported law library growth; and guided the school to a consistent Top 25 ranking. Hines has continued to serve on the Iowa faculty as a full-time teacher and just completed his 44th year. In 2004, he was selected by his peers as the college’s nominee for a universitywide teaching excellence award. Hines has won two coveted all-university awards at Iowa. Throughout his career, Hines has been involved in the work of the Association of American Law Schools and in 2005 was elected president of the association.

James W. Paddock received his undergraduate degree and in 1956 his law degree from KU. Following graduation he was in private practice in Lawrence until 1972 when he was appointed District Judge of the Seventh Judicial District of Kansas. He retired in 1994, but the Kansas Supreme Court appointed Paddock as a senior judge and he was assigned to hear cases with the Kansas Court of Appeals. He has been president of the Kansas District Judges Association, president of the Douglas County Bar Association and a member of the Kansas Commission on Judicial Qualification from 1988 to 1995.

Paddock has actively served his community and the state of Kansas. He also has shared his extensive legal experience with future generations of KU lawyers by teaching a seminar in trial practice for several years. He is a past member of the KU Law Society Board of Governors and a James Woods Green Medallion honoree. As president of the Ethel and Raymond F. Rice Foundation, he has played an instrumental role in building the School of Law through funding for the Rice Scholarship Program, the Rice Professorship and a variety of other programs.

Raised in Johnson County, Christopher “Kit” Smith attended Wabash College in Indiana (as well as the University of Madrid) and received a bachelor’s degree in history and Spanish in 1969. He entered the KU law school that same year. He graduated in 1972 as a member of the Order of the Coif.

Smith went directly from Lawrence to Washington, D.C., and has practiced there ever since. He spent 30 years at Arent Fox, handling regulatory, public policy and commercial law matters. Smith is a recognized expert in Federal Trade Commission and Consumer Product Safety Commission proceedings. He is the co-author of The Law of Product Warranties, a leading treatise on the subject. He joined Sonnenschein Nath and Rosenthal three years ago.

Smith has been active in the KU law school for more than 25 years. As one of the first graduates of the “modern” law school to work in a large Washington, D.C., firm, Smith has helped many KU law graduates secure their first jobs, including Carol Beier, now a Kansas Supreme Court Justice, and Steve McAllister, former dean of the KU law school. Smith has been involved in fundraising for the law school since the 1980s, when he assisted with Campaign Kansas. Smith has hosted numerous events for the law school in Washington and is a James Woods Green Medallion honoree. Smith is also the parent of a freshman at KU.

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The University of Kansas is a major comprehensive research and teaching university. University Relations is the central public relations office for KU's Lawrence campus.

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