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2002 Keedy Cup Examines Adarand v. Mineta

Peter Guirguis, Ashley K. Lunkenheimer, Sean R. Marshall, Oliver M. Olanoff

The case argued for the Edwin R. Keedy Cup Competition in January was Adarand Constructors, Inc. v. Mineta, an equal protection challenge to a U.S. Department of Transportation program that provides highway subcontracts to “disadvantaged business enterprises.”

The distinguished bench was made up by The Honorable Cornelia G. Kennedy, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit; The Honorable Sonia Sotomayor, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit; and The Honorable Juan R. Torruella, U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit.

Sean R. Marshall and Oliver M. Olanoff argued for the Petitioners. Peter Guirguis and Ashley K. Lunkenheimer argued on behalf of the Respondent. The bench awarded the Petitioners the Keedy Cup for the Best Brief, and Olanoff was recognized as Best Oralist.

The Keedy Cup is named for its founder, Dean Edwin R. Keedy (1880-1958). The competition is the culmination of the Law School’s intramural brief writing and oral advocacy moot court tournament. All second-year students are eligible. After two rounds of competition the four students who score the highest are selected to become Keedy Cup participants. In their third year, the participants randomly paired in two teams argue a current Supreme Court case before an esteemed panel of jurists.


In February the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit sat in Philadelphia at the Law School. The Court heard arguments for Vinson v. Air Force, Novosteel S.A. v. U.S., Husky Injection v. R.&D. Tool, and Griffin v. Bertina. Open to the public, preferred seating was offered to Law students taking the courses Patent Law, Strategic Intellectual Property, Biotechnology and the Law, and Science and the Public Domain. Following the session the judges were the distinguished guests of the Law School at a reception with faculty and students.

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