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Pre-law Advisory Council

 Pre-Law Advisory Council Purpose

The Pre-Law Advisory Council has been formed to help students better understand the future of the legal profession, give advice on crafting new programs, identify supporters, and provide insight on how best to reach programmatic and philanthropic goals.  Council members facilitate access to leadership and guidance through strategic advice and expertise, and by advancing opportunities for revenue generation, visibility and reputation.

Structure of the Council

Advisory Councils consists of prominent and influential external volunteers that represent a diverse cross-section of university stakeholders.  They are encouraged to meet regularly with the program chairs and academic leaders to obtain an overview of current activities, priorities and strategic plans.

Committee Membership

The council is made up of  members from different backgrounds, all of whom are interested in supporting and strengthening the Pre-Law program at Shepherd University.

Bridget Cohee, J.D. Bridget Cohee is a judge for the West Virginia Judicial District 23 in West Virginia. Cohee earned her J.D. from the University of Kentucky. She is a managing member for Steptoe & Johnson PLLC’s office in Martinsburg.  Additionally, she is a former member of the Board of Governors at Shepherd University.
David DeJarnett, J.D., partner, Bowles Rice David DeJarnett practices in the area of private client services, with a concentration in estate and trust planning, estate and trust administration, business and tax planning and tax controversies.   Another component of David’s private client services practice is asset protection planning designed to protect the client’s assets from potential liability arising in both his or her professional and personal lives by structuring the client’s affairs in order to have the best chance of preserving financial standing.  The steps taken often include limited liability companies, trusts and prenuptial agreements.  For clients with closely-held businesses, David’s practice encompasses business succession counseling, using various tools such as family companies, buy-sell agreements, deferred compensation agreements and stock sales, gifts and philanthropic wishes.Utilizing a combination of the aforementioned areas of practice, David has represented national and state lottery winners – including multi-million dollar Powerball prize winners – in matters involving confidentiality, protection of assets, tax planning and estate and trust planning.  David’s tax controversies practice includes representing clients before the Internal Revenue Service, the Appeals Office and the United States Tax Court.  He is the Former President of the West Virginia Tax Institute and has served  on the faculty of the Institute for International Training, Trade and Development, Inc. at Shepherd University in connection with its Russian Tax Officials Training Program.
Max Guirguis, Professor, Political Science Dr. Max Guirguis is the chair of the Department of Political Science, Global Studies, and Geography. His primary teaching responsibilities are in the areas of U.S. Constitutional law and American Politics. He also teaches specialized international courses focusing on the Middle East and International Political Economy.
Aart Holslag, Associate Professor, Political Science and Global Studies Dr. Holtslag previously taught at the University of Massachusetts, Lowell. His specialization is in International Relations, specifically International Organization, International Law and Human Rights. His research focuses around the role of the individual in Global Politics as related to International Organization, International Law, and Human Rights.
Jordan Jalil, Student Representative Jordan Jalil is a senior, double majoring in political science (with concentrations in legal studies, and Middle East and Africa studies) and economics at Shepherd University. As an active member and president of the Shepherd debate and forensics team, and student member on the board of advisors for the Stubblefield Institute for Civil Political Communications, she is passionate about political discourse and the importance of developing the next generation of statesmen in America.
Annie Lewin, J.D., Director of Social Equity, Title IX Coordinator Anne E. (Annie) Lewin is the Title IX Coordinator at Shepherd University. Annie Lewin is responsible for responding to reports of gender-based discrimination and sexual misconduct to ensure equitable resolution of complaints and the prevention of future discrimination, harassment, and/or violence at Shepherd University. In addition, Annie trains all Title IX investigators and supervises all Title IX investigations at Shepherd. Annie graduated Summa Cum Laude and earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Women’s Studies and International Studies from West Virginia University , as well as her J.D. from the West Virginia University College of Law. Annie also received a Master’s degree in Higher Education Administration from Shepherd University. During the past year, Annie has received certification from the Association of Student Conduct Administrator’s Title IX and Sexual Misconduct Institute, as well the Association of Title IX Administrator’s Civil Rights Title IX Level III Investigation Certification. Annie currently runs the Interpersonal Violence Prevention Task Force at Shepherd University, which coordinates and implements campus-wide Title IX training and prevention education programming focused on shifting norms toward a culture valuing mutual respect and human dignity.
Francine Phillips, J.D., Jefferson County Public Defenders Office Ms.  Phillips received her Juris Doctorate from West Virginia University and her MBA from Shippensburg University.  She is also a an alum of Shepherd University, where she received her BS in Business Administration.  She was also recognized as the outstanding alumna of the year.  In addition to her law practice, she is also a magistrate in the Jefferson County Public Defenders Office.  Academic Specialties:  Business and administrative law, criminal justice, legal research and writing.
Michael Santa Barbara, J.D., Office of M. Santa Barbara Law

A graduate of the University of Richmond School of Law, Mr. Santa Barbara is the owner of M. Santa Barbara Law,  working in the personal injury field.  He is licensed in West Virginia, Virginia, and Maryland.  He is a former board member of the Contemporary American Theater Festival (CATF) at Shepherd University.
Kathy Santa Barbara, JD, Law Office of Kathy M. Santa Barbara Licensed for more than 29 years, Ms. Santa Barbara attended University of California at Los Angeles School of Law. Her practice is in  Martinsburg, WV and handles cases in Family, Domestic Violence, Litigation. 
Barry Standback, CEO, National Test Preparation Service Barry is the CEO of National Test Preparation Service, an entity that helps people prepare for law & grad school.  He has also been a member of the faculty at North Carolina Central University.

Member Responsibilities