KU News: KU Legal Aid Clinic, community partners to host criminal record expungement clinic

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From the Office of Public Affairs | http://www.news.ku.edu

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KU Legal Aid Clinic, community partners to host criminal record expungement clinic

LAWRENCE — The University of Kansas School of Law’s Legal Aid Clinic will host a Clean Slate Criminal Record Expungement Clinic this spring in partnership with the Douglas County District Attorney’s Office and Lawrence Public Library. The clinic will take place in person from 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. Feb. 12 in the library’s auditorium, 707 Vermont St.

 

KU gains new Department of Defense research expertise

LAWRENCE — A former senior leader in the Department of Defense (DOD) research community has joined the University of Kansas’ Office of Graduate Military Programs as its director of national security research. Kurt Preston comes to KU with over 35 years of combined experience leading research programs in DOD and the U.S. Army. He most recently led the Resource Conservation and Resilience portfolio within DOD’s Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program and the Environmental Security Technology Certification Program.

 

Property rights ‘laws’ historically manipulated by businesses, research finds

LAWRENCE — A new scholarly paper from University of Kansas business scholars observes both recent and historic periods when different nations’ “institutional environments” were affected through political struggles. In such struggles, social actors such as states and firms determined how property rights were defined, allocated, delineated and enforced.

 

Full stories below.

 

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Contact: Emma Herrman, School of Law, [email protected], @kulawschool

KU Legal Aid Clinic, community partners to host criminal record expungement clinic

LAWRENCE — The University of Kansas School of Law’s Legal Aid Clinic will host a Clean Slate Criminal Record Expungement Clinic this spring in partnership with the Douglas County District Attorney’s Office and Lawrence Public Library. The clinic will take place in person from 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. Feb. 12 in the library’s auditorium, 707 Vermont St.

“As a public library, we understand that knowledge is power and helps people thrive,” said Marc Veloz, library community resource specialist. “We see it as part of our mission to work closely with partner organizations like KU Legal Aid Clinic and the Douglas County DA’s Office to host these types of outreach events to help community members master the network of existing resources that can help them live their best lives.”

Expungement seals an arrest record, diversion or conviction from public view, with certain exceptions. The Legal Aid Clinic will provide free legal representation to eligible individuals seeking to expunge records in Douglas County District Court and/or Lawrence Municipal Court.

“We are always grateful to have a hand in this event that serves as a catalyst for change for so many,” District Attorney Suzanne Valdez said. “It’s a privilege to help people shed the weight of a criminal record and unlock opportunities.”

The clinic can accept clients with income up to 250% of the federal poverty level. Clients who qualify for Legal Aid Clinic representation but who do not qualify for a waiver of the court’s per-case filing fee will need to pay that court fee, but no attorney’s fees, if they are eligible for services.

After the intake clinic day at the library, clients will need to attend one additional appointment and any required court hearings with their Legal Aid attorney.

“Criminal records impose so many barriers for individuals – in employment, housing and education – long after they have served their sentence,” said Meredith Schnug, associate director of the Legal Aid Clinic. “Expungement is an important legal remedy for people to move beyond their past mistakes. The Legal Aid Clinic is excited to partner with the Lawrence Public Library and the Douglas County Attorney’s Office to offer this expungement clinic and the opportunity for a fresh start.”

For any questions regarding the clinic and expungement eligibility, contact the Legal Aid Clinic at 785-864-5564.

 

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Don’t miss new episodes of “When Experts Attack!,”

a KU News Service podcast hosted by Kansas Public Radio.

 

https://kansaspublicradio.org/when-experts-attack

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Contact: Mike Denning, Office of Graduate Military Programs, 785-864-1684, [email protected]

KU gains new Department of Defense research expertise

LAWRENCE — A former senior leader in the Department of Defense (DOD) research community has joined the University of Kansas’ Office of Graduate Military Programs as its director of national security research.

Kurt Preston comes to KU with over 35 years of combined experience leading research programs in DOD and the U.S. Army. He most recently led the Resource Conservation and Resilience portfolio within DOD’s Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program and the Environmental Security Technology Certification Program.

“We are excited to have Dr. Preston join the university,” said Mike Denning, director of the Office of Graduate Military Programs. “His experience inside the Beltway and leading DOD research programs aligns with the research and discovery institutional priority of Jayhawks Rising.”

“The opportunity to return to the heartland and be involved in the vibrant KU community is a joy,” Preston said. “DOD basic and applied research enterprise provides academic thought leaders a key pathway to advance their work and contribute to our national security. I am excited to be at KU to help connect and colleague our researchers in these efforts.”

In addition to his insight into the DOD research enterprise, Preston brings expertise in environmental and climate change challenges around the globe. He played a lead role in the recently released National Climate Assessment, which summarizes the impacts of climate change on the U.S., and he recently led an interagency team that wrote key portions of the federal government’s 2022-2026 Arctic Research Plan.

His academic experience includes serving as a tenured professor and associate vice chancellor for research at the University of Nebraska. In addition to his assignment within the Office of Graduate Military Programs, Preston will serve as professor of practice in the School of Engineering and the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences.

 

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http://www.news.ku.edu

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Contact: Jon Niccum, KU News Service, 785-864-7633, [email protected]

Property rights ‘laws’ historically manipulated by businesses, research finds

LAWRENCE — Within most countries, businesses operate under the notion that their property rights are stable. A set of operational rules and a political system that protects those rules are firmly entrenched, right?

Not necessarily.

“According to organization and management theory, mostly we assume the external environment — such as a political, economic and social one that we collectively call the institutional environment — is a given,” said Jun Ho Lee, assistant professor of strategy and international business at the University of Kansas School of Business.

“Even in daily life we usually say, ‘It is what it is.’ In this paper, we challenge that conventional wisdom.”

His article titled “The Endogenous Creation of a Property Rights Regime: A Historical Approach to Firm Strategy and Governance Structure” argues that private firms can manipulate this institutional environment by legitimizing an existing one that protects their property rights or by delegitimizing another that threatens their property rights. It appears in the Academy of Management Perspectives.

Co-written by Minyoung Kim, the Frank T. Stockton Professor of Strategic Management at KU, and Marcelo Bucheli of the University of Illinois, the paper observes both recent and historic periods when the institutional environment was affected through political struggles. In such struggles, social actors such as states and firms determined how property rights were defined, allocated, delineated and enforced.

“If you look back at the history of the United States, you can look at the collusion of the so-called ‘robber barons’ — Andrew Carnegie, John D. Rockefeller and J.P. Morgan — in the election of American president William McKinley,” Lee said.

His article notes how after these magnates created huge business empires through aggressive processes of vertical and horizontal integrations, they came together to provide generous funding to Republican candidate McKinley’s 1896 presidential campaign against Democrat William Jennings Bryan, who campaigned with a platform against the big “trusts” in transportation, energy and finance. Bryan’s defeat was followed by the “great merger movement,” in which large firms consolidated into even larger giants without being challenged by antitrust legislation.

“This shows how private firms could advance certain types of governance structures after ensuring the consolidation of a particular property rights regime,” Lee said.

Private actors can also play an important role in promoting changes in the institutional environment to delegitimize the property rights and institutional arrangements of other private actors.

“A similar argument was used in South Africa, but this time to support the expropriation of domestic property owned by ethnic white people,” Lee said.

After Nelson Mandela’s release from jail in 1990, some members of the African National Congress’ radical wing argued that contracts signed under apartheid should be declared void because they had been enacted under a racist, undemocratic regime. Those advocating this point were defeated by Mandela’s wing, which supported the 1990 Groote Schuur agreement that the African National Congress signed with the last apartheid president, Frederik de Klerk, committing to keeping the bases of the economic system intact.

Lee and his team arrived at their research conclusions by conducting comprehensive historical analyses.

“The history behind a particular regime, as well as the degree of contestability and stability it enjoys, can provide us with strong analytical tools to understand why property rights are more secure in some regimes than in others,” Lee said.

He said he believed this paper offers strong evidence that any type of institutional environment can be changed by an organization in some way.

“Extending our theory about a firm’s role in endogenous creation and change of institutional environments, we hope to offer the implication of corporate activities for creating a positive and sustainable institutional environment,” Lee said.

“We can do much more proactively, not just to simply say, ‘It is what it is.’”

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Erinn Barcomb-Peterson, director of news and media relations, [email protected]

 

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