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Center for Law & Public Interest

Justice Ortique PhotoDillard University has a long-standing history of producing graduates who have excelled in the areas of law and advocacy dating back to 1869 when Straight College instituted its law program and graduates were admitted to the Louisiana State Bar without examination. Pioneers and civil rights leaders like Louis A. Martinet and Rudolphe L. Desdunes were at the forefront of the landmark Supreme Court case Plessy v. Ferguson (1896). Since then, Dillard has graduated hundreds of successful lawyers, judges, and legislators, including the late Revius O. Ortique Jr., the first African American to serve on the Louisiana Supreme Court, and today, Judge Carl E. Stewart, the first African American Chief Judge to serve on the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals.


Hence, the Center for Law and Public Interest is being established as a formal academic conduit in which the university can grow and expand in an area where it has a proven record of success.

 Justice Ortique Mock Trial Center

About the Center

The Center for Law and Public Interest grew out of Dillard University’s commitment to undergraduate students who seek careers in law, governmental service, criminal justice, social work, public policy, and environmental justice. Numerous Dillard students pursue pre-law studies and will benefit from an enriched learning environment, mentoring from legal professionals, preparation for the law school entrance exam (LSAT), public lectures, workshops, undergraduate research, internships, and scholarships.


 In addition, the Center’s activities will include advocacy on issues critical to public interest and will focus on social justice and research. The already established Annual Revius O. Ortique Jr. Lecture on Law and Society serves as an integral part of the Center’s public interest initiatives.


The Ortique Mock Trial Courtroom will provide a place for trial advocacy training and simulation, and attract scholars, law practitioners and advocates for justice to the Dillard campus. The Courtroom will also be accessible to the community for mock trial competition and preparation, administrative law hearings, and can be used as a facility for jury testing.


With the opening of the Center for Law and Public Interest, the University will increase its ability to attract the best and brightest pre-law students as well as use its academic capital for social justice advocacy.


The Center is currently located in the Dillard University Collier House/Community Resource Center, 3301 Annette Street, New Orleans, LA, 70122.

For information about Project Pericles click here



For More Information Contact,

Dr. Gary Clark

(504) 816-4094;

For Dr. Clark's Bio click here



2601 Gentilly Boulevard
New Orleans, Louisiana 70122

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