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Federal judge Frank C. Damrell Jr. to speak at SCU law school commencement

Tuesday, May. 10, 2005

SANTA CLARA, Calif. May 10, 2005Frank C. Damrell, Jr., a federal district court judge with the Eastern District of California, will speak at Santa Clara University’s law school commencement on Saturday, May 21. He was appointed by President Clinton to the United States District Court on Nov. 12, 1997.

“The law school is immensely proud to have Judge Damrell speak to our graduates and their families on this significant occasion,” said Donald Polden, dean of the law school. “Judge Damrell is a great friend of Santa Clara University and its law school, and  is a great role model for our students and graduates.” 

The law school will award 296 juris doctorate degrees and 20 master of law degrees at the commencement ceremony, which will be held at 10.30 a.m. in the Mission Gardens on the SCU campus. “The graduating class came to Santa Clara from 14 countries and nearly every state in the United States, and we are very proud of their achievements and accomplishments while in law school,” Polden added.

Judge Damrell attended SCU and the Sacred Heart (Jesuit) Novitiate before graduating from University of California, Berkeley in 1961. He earned his law degree from Yale Law School and entered the practice of law, first as deputy attorney general of the State of California and then as senior deputy district attorney in Stanislaus County.

Judge Damrell has achieved national prominence in many roles and activities related to the federal courts and civic education.  He was appointed by Chief Justice William Rehnquist to the Judicial Branch Committee of the United States Judicial Conference and by Chief Judge Mary Schroeder of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals to the Circuit’s Education Committee.  He also serves on the Board of Advisors of the National Conference on Citizenship.  Judge Damrell founded Operation Protect and Defend in which teams of federal and state judges and lawyers teach in high school government classes about historical and current issues concerning American constitutional and civic values.  In May 2002, Judge Damrell chaired a national summit of all major civic education organizations in Washington, D.C.  The organizations have formed together to promote alliances on a national level to foster and advance civic education throughout the nation’s elementary and secondary schools. 

About Santa Clara University School of Law

The SCU School of Law, founded in 1912, combines a tradition of excellence with a commitment to ethics, diversity, and social justice, and is fully accredited by the American Bar Association. Its students work in criminal and civil community law clinics and may earn certificates in intellectual property law, international law or public interest law, and LL.M. degrees in intellectual property law and international law. For more information, visit

About Santa Clara University

Santa Clara University, a comprehensive Jesuit, Catholic university located in California’s Silicon Valley, offers its 8,213 students rigorous undergraduate curricula in arts and sciences, business, and engineering, plus master’s and law degrees. Distinguished nationally by the fourth-highest graduation rate among all U.S. master’s universities, California’s oldest higher-education institution demonstrates faith-inspired values of ethics and social justice. More information is online at

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