The United States Constitution is a remarkable document, embodying the fundamental principles of our government. It is a model of statesmanship, cooperation and compromise.
This year marks the 225th anniversary of the ratification of the Constitution. On March 12, 13 and 14, 2014, lawyers, jurists, educators and citizens from around the nation will gather in Atlanta at the Westin Buckhead Atlanta for a Celebration of the Constitution and the ratification. It is fitting that Georgia lawyers should lead in celebrating the Constitution. Georgia was the fourth state to ratify the document. When the ninth state, New Hampshire, ratified the Constitution, it took effect as the governing document of the United States. When the Constitutional Convention convened in Philadelphia in 1787, thirty-four of the fifty-five members were students of the law, several of them from Georgia. In March of 1789, the Congress of the United States met for the first time under the United States Constitution. On April 30, 1789, George Washington was sworn in as the first President of the United States, and on September of 1789 the Supreme Court of the United States was established, both acts done under Constitutional authority.
Speakers at the symposium will include Justice Antonin Scalia, as well as another Supreme Court justice to be named later; historian and Medal of Freedom winner David McCullough; two of the most distinguished former U.S. Solicitors General, Paul Clement and Seth Waxman; state attorneys general who are at the forefront of helping articulate constitutional boundaries, including Georgia’s Attorney General Sam Olens and Colorado’s Attorney General John Suthers; leading journalists reporting on the present meaning of the Constitution, including Nina Totenberg and Adam Liptak; president and chief executive officer of the United States Institute of Peace, Jim Marshall; prominent jurists, including Alex Kozinsky, David Nahmias and Richard Posner; constitutional scholars from some of our nation’s finest law schools; and leading attorneys experienced in the litigation of key constitutional questions. Further details will be sent out by ICLE fairly soon.
In coordination with the March 2014 celebration, the Daily Report is working with the State Bar of Georgia to afford a vehicle through which Georgia attorneys and others may share their thoughts and experiences relative to our magnificent Constitution. As the president of the State Bar of Georgia, I invite interested individuals to submit articles of 500 words or less to firstname.lastname@example.org. Members of the planning committee will review submissions and make selections for publication in the Daily Report on a regular basis until the date of the actual event.
Please help set the stage for this unique event in Georgia history by taking the time to share your thoughts and ideas with others.
Charles L. Ruffin
President, State Bar of Georgia