Atlanta Conference Big Success

Rick Deane and his Atlanta based committee of Kent Alexander, Bob Barr and Joe Whitley succeeded in hosting one of the best NAFUSA conferences ever held. The opening day set the tone when over 40 golfers enjoyed the prestigious East Lake Golf Club, home two weeks earlier to the PGA tour. The rest of the conference attendees joined the golfers in the evening for the opening cocktail reception, hosted by Greenberg Traurig. The crowd was welcomed to Atlanta by Former Mayor Shirley Franklin.

On Friday morning, the CLE program began with welcomes from the Georgia Attorney General Olens and current Georgia U.S. Attorneys, Edward J. Tarver and Michael J. Moore. Deputy Solicitor General Michael R. Dreeben gave a presentation on the Supreme Court Term, 2011-2012, describing many of the significant cases of the term which he had personally argued. The Friday program closed with a panel sponsored by Ernst & Young on Corporate Compliance- Investigations, Diligence and Analytics and moderated by Jay Stephens. The panelists were Assistant AG Lanny Breuer; NAFUSA members Dan Webb, Kevin O’Connor and Sharon Zealey; and Brian Loughman and David Remick from Ernst & Young.

The Friday luncheon was held at The Carter Center. Although Former President Jimmy Carter was unable to join us, he did send a personal letter in which he said:

I regret my schedule did not permit me to be in Atlanta this week to be with you in person and visit with some of my former associates. I commend you all for your service to our nation and hope that your meetings are productive.

AGAC chair Paul Fishman spoke at the Carter luncheon with his News from the Field and the AGAC.

On Friday evening, several class reunions were held: the Reagan-Bush I alumni, the Bush II group, the Clinton alumni and the Carter alums.

Saturday’s CLE began with Marshall Jarrett, Director of EOUSA, describing the State of the Department. The J. Michael Bradford Award was presented to Reid Schar, ND of Illinois, who gave a stimulating presentation on his handling of the Blagojevich case. Rory K. Little, Professor of Law at U.C. Hastings College of Law gave the Ethics Presentation. The program concluded with a panel discussion on Immigration Issues, moderated by Charlie Savage of The New York Times. The panel consisted of Alejandro N. Mayorkas, DHS, Nina Perales, MALDEF, Alabama AG Luther Strange, Chief John King, City of Doraville and former ICE director Julie Myers Wood.

The conference concluded with the Saturday banquet and business meeting. The election of Jay Stephens and the other officers and directors is described elsewhere as is the unforgettable keynote address by Mike Cody. Rick Deane was honored for his outstanding year as president of NAFUSA and his organization of the conference. Rick was surprised by a celebration of his birthday, including a cake and 60 purple balloons.

The conferences would not be possible without the support of the sponsors. This year sponors contributed $78,000 to the success of the Atlanta meeting. A full list of the sponors can be found on the right side of the home page of the NAFUSA website. By clicking on the sponsor logo you can visit their website.

Next year Washington, DC.