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Lynk lauded by Alumni Association

February 11, 2010

Myles V. Lynk, the Peter Kiewit Foundation Professor of Law and the Legal Profession, a Faculty Fellow of the Center for Law, Science & Innovation, and a 2008-09 Honors Faculty Fellow at ASU’s Barrett, the Honors College, received the 2010 Outstanding Faculty Award of the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law Alumni Association at the Association’s annual luncheon on Monday, Feb. 8.

Lynk was honored for his numerous contributions to the College of Law. For example, in 2001, he organized the only symposium at the law school on federal campaign finance reform and "soft money," which has proved eerily prescient in light of the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent ruling in Citizen's United. Later in 2001, beginning after 9/11 and continuing into 2002, Lynk organized a series of programs at the law school called, "Challenges," about the various ways in which different areas of the law would change and be affected by the events of 9/11.

Lynk's areas of interest include business and corporate law, civil procedure, legal ethics, and law and literature. Lynk reorganized the law school’s introductory courses in business law by introducing a two-semester course called Business Associations I and II for students wanting an in-depth exposure to corporate law to complement the one-semester Business Organizations course. He also introduced a seminar that combines corporate governance with legal ethics, created a law and literature seminar on how citizens’ duties can conflict with their desires as individuals, using Homer's Iliad as its text, and chaired the law school’s externship committee.

Lynk serves as the faculty advisor to the Black Law Students Association, the Corporate and Business Law Society, to whom he lectured in 2008 on the home mortgage crisis and in 2009 on the regulation of the financial services industry, and the Sports & Entertainment Law Students Association.

Lynk’s students have appreciated that he relates coursework to current events in economic regulation and the professional conduct of lawyers. Before arriving at the College of Law 10 years ago, Lynk worked as an attorney in private practice in Washington, D.C., a visiting professor and lecturer in law at two Washington-area law schools, Special Assistant to the Secretary of Health, Education and Welfare, and an Assistant Director on the White House Domestic Policy Staff under President Carter. Soon after joining academia, he said, he realized he had to make allowances for the fact that law students are not yet law-firm associates, and he learned to bring more levity to the classroom than he had to the courtroom.

"One of the reasons I came into teaching was because it gives you the opportunity to explore the tensions inherent in every area of law. I call it the tension between virtue and desire, about our need to give each individual the freedom to act as they choose, up to the point where their actions harm others," Lynk said. "The legal rules society has developed to balance these tensions are fascinating."

As a Visiting Honors Faculty Fellow in ASU’s Barrett, the Honors College, he taught a seminar on the influence of legal rules on the moral choices we must make, and lectured on, "Conflict or Community? The Rule of Law and the Role of Lawyers." Lynk, a member of the governing Council of the American Law Institute and a Life Member of the American Bar Foundation, also serves in the House of Delegates of the American Bar Association. He has supervised numerous law student "third year" theses and undergraduate senior honor theses. Lynk also serves as ASU’s NCAA Faculty Athletics Representative, where he works closely with the university’s Department of Intercollegiate Athletics on issues concerning student-athlete welfare, academic eligibility and institutional compliance with NCAA legislation and Pac-10 Conference rules.

Janie Magruder,
(480) 727-9052
Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law