Champion of Justice: A Symposium to Celebrate Rob Warden's Quest to Free the Innocent

Friday, May 9, 2014 - Thorne Auditorium

Champion for Justice Symposium

Please join Northwestern Law's Center on Wrongful Convictions and Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology on Friday, May 9, 2014 for "Champion of Justice: A Symposium to Celebrate Rob Warden's Quest to Free the Innocent", a symposium featuring a keynote address by Barry Scheck, two panel discussions, and a sit-down conversation between Rob Warden and Eric Zorn, columnist for the Chicago Tribune.

The panels for the event will focus on the Death Penalty: How Innocence Changed the Death Penalty Debate and Wrongful Convictions: Causes and Reform Initiatives.

The symposium will conclude with a conversation between Rob Warden, Executive Director of the Center on Wrongful Convictions and Eric Zorn, Columnist for the Chicago Tribune.  The event will conclude with a public reception. CLE credit will be available for this event. The Journal is proud to publish its Fall 2015 Symposium issue in conjunction with this event.

This event is free and open to the public, please RSVP here

To access CLE materials, click here.


Barry Scheck Barry C. Scheck, is a Professor of Law at the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law in New York City.  In his thirty-five years on the Cardozo faculty, he served as the Director of Clinical Education, Co-Director of the Trial Advocacy Programs, and the Jacob Burns Center for the Study of Law and Ethics. He worked for three-years as a staff attorney at The Legal Aid Society in New York City before joining the faculty at Cardozo.

Barry C. Scheck and his colleague Peter Neufeld, Co-Founded and Co-Direct the Innocence Project, an independent nonprofit organization closely affiliated with Cardozo Law School, which uses DNA evidence to exonerate the wrongly convicted.  The Project also assists police, prosecutors, and defense attorneys in trying to bring about reform in many areas of the criminal justice system, including eyewitness identification procedures, interrogation methods, crime laboratory administration, and forensic science research. In its twenty-one years of existence, 314 individuals have been exonerated in the United States through post-conviction DNA testing. You can read about each of these cases at


1:30 PM

Daniel B. Rodriguez
Dean and Harold Washington Professor, Northwestern University School of Law

Winston & Strawn, LLP

1:40 pm

Opening Address
Larry Marshall (JD ‘85)
Co-Founder, Northwestern University School of Law, Center on Wrongful Convictions
Professor of Law, Stanford Law School

2:15 pm

Panel Discussion­ - Death Penalty: How Innocence Changed the Death Penalty Debate

Larry Marshall
Professor of Law, Stanford Law School

Jeanne Bishop (JD '84) | Assistant Public Defender, Cook County Public Defender's Office

Sabrina Butler | Exoneree who spent more than 5 years in prison, including 33 months on death row

Richard Dieter | Executive Director | Death Penalty Information Center

Maurice Possley | Writer and researcher | National Registry of Exonerations | University of Michigan Law School

Randy Steidl | Exoneree who spent 17 years in Illinois prisons, including 12 years on death row

Thomas P. Sullivan | Litigator | Jenner & Block

3:15 pm

Presentation - Being Wrong: The story of how a sexual assault survivor misidentified her attacker
Penny Beerntsen

3:45 pm

Panel Discussion - Wrongful Convictions: Causes and Reform Initiatives
Steve Drizin
Clinical Professor of Law, Assistant Dean, Bluhm Legal Clinic           

Scott Drury (JD ’98) | Illinois State Representative

Richard Leo | Visiting Professor | University of California, Los Angeles School of Law

Elizabeth Loftus | Distinguished Professor | University of California, Irvine

Peter Neufeld | Co-Founder of the Innocence Project | Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law

4:45 pm

Keynote Speaker

Barry Scheck
Co-Founder, the Innocence Project
Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law

5:15 pm

Video Tribute to Rob Warden sponsored by Kirkland & Ellis and the Cohen Law Group

5:45 pm

Interview and Conversation

Rob Warden and Eric Zorn, Columnist for the Chicago Tribune

6:15 pm

Exoneree tribute to Rob Warden

6:30 pm

Reception sponsored by Grippo & Elden

The Journal will honor Rob Warden by devoting its Fall 2015 issue to articles addressing the causes and consequences of wrongful convictions.  The editors invite criminal law scholars, practitioners, judges, and activists to submit topic proposals for consideration.

Proposals must be submitted by June 1, 2014, and should be approximately one page in length.  Final manuscripts should be completed by November 2014 and should be approximately 8000–10,000 words in length.  Please direct any proposals or questions to Symposium Editor Reena Sikdar at