McGeorge School of Law

Bradford, Clark and Farnesi Victorious in Ben Frantz Mock Trial Competition

March 18, 2013

Benjamin Frantz winners

18th Annual Benjamin Frantz 1st Year Mock Trial Competition winners: From left, Selena Farnesi, Neil Patrick Clark and James Bradford.

First-year McGeorge students James Bradford, Neil Patrick Clark, and Selena Farnesi won top honors and scholarship awards in the 18th Annual Benjamin Frantz 1st Year Mock Trial Competition, which concluded on March 9. The three winners emerged from a group of 90 new students who participated in the preliminary rounds of the competition.

Additional awards for this year's event included:

  • Best Opening Statement — Daphne Copenhaver
  • Best Direct Examination — Jacquelyn Bartel
  • Best Cross Examination — Janelle Young
  • Best Closing Argument — Shay Billington

Rebecca Kelly, '13, coordinated the competition, which has become a major launching point for McGeorge's nationally recognized Mock Trial Competition Team. Past winners active on the law school's current intercollegiate team include David Norton, '13, Hunter Starr, '13, Teal Ericson, '15, Jake Weaver, '15, and Amanda Massimini, '15. Current Competition Team members led workshops on various aspects of trial advocacy on Feb. 19 and 20, and preliminary rounds of the Competition were held on March 1 and 2.

The Competition is named after the late McGeorge Professor Benjamin Frantz, whose generous gift endowed and initiated the event back in 1996. The concept was the brainchild of one of our Mock Trial Competition Team members, Joseph Low. During his tenure, Ben had an office in the Courtroom and watched Trial Advocacy classes. When Ben was in his late 80s or early 90s, he mentioned leaving some money to our Trial Advocacy Program. Professor Joe Taylor suggested creating a program of perpetual scholarships in the First Year Mock Trial Competition Program. Ben agreed and the Ben Frantz Endowed Scholarship for the First Year Mock Trial Competition was created. Since that time, other donors have also contributed to the fund.