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Desiree Goff

Leaning into the Law of the Sea

Continuing on in our search of leading women attorneys at the intersection of legal and scientific fields, we are looking at the practice of Admiralty or Maritime Law for this month. A somewhat obscure area of law practice, admiralty or maritime law is the body of law that governs navigation and shipping, both substantively and procedurally.* While not necessarily scientifically based, it combines ocean policy, admiralty, and maritime commerce. For example, anything from accidents due to colliding fishing vessels, discovery of sunken treasures, the employee rights of those working at sea, and environmental conflicts such as toxic waste dumps may…

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Everything is Reproductive Justice— What Happens Next?

“There is no relative direction in the vastness of space. There is only yourself, your ship, your crew.” Commodore Paris to Captain Kirk      I found myself watching Star Trek Beyond all weekend.  I regularly watch a lot of action and science fiction, but I do not think it’s just my habits that led me to a particular plot and theme. “Election anxiety” has joined the stage and the lexicon for COVID-19 times. While the entire world is wrapped in a zoom or IRL lesson on grappling with the unexpected and uncertainty, the question still presents itself, “what happens next?” To answer…

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Am I wearing too many hats? Learning how to juggle it all: COVID hit home – You should VOTE!

My nose is bleeding profusely. My white N95 mask is soaked with blood. How did this happen?  Let’s rewind back to my lonely days. OK, I haven’t been lonely. I simply miss my family. I have a nice size immediate family, five brother and five sisters. It’s an unfamiliar territory when I’m unable to hug my siblings, give my mom and dad cheek kisses, or attend family gatherings. I have become content with the COVID reality of going from seeing my family at least once a week to not seeing my family for weeks at a time. After a string of events that I did not partake in, I found myself having to go to the health department to…

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Practice Pointers - Preparing for the 2020-2021 OCI Season

It’s pretty safe to say that this year’s OCI process will look very, very different (OFF-campus interviewing, anyone?).  But what won’t change is the need the thoroughly prepare so you can put your best foot (read: Zoom self) forward.  So how do you do that? Check out my top interview and resume tips for law students, and feel free to ping me if you have any follow-up questions! Top 5 Law Student Resume Tips Stick to a page. Consider adding an Interests section so there’s an easy way for your interviewers to get to know and connect with you. And…

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What makes a good worker?

I got my first legal job after working in several other types of jobs, and I’ve always felt that every piece of knowledge and every experience I have gained along my journey contributes to being as successful in my current job as I am.   Being good work force in my opinion is equal parts professional skills and life skills, and the latter can only be acquired by, you know, living. No-one expects a 1L intern to have the same kind of life experiences as a trained attorney, but you can learn something even from what you think is the…

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Techlegality: Shaping Policy

With Election Day in just a few days, I am reminded of how policy shapes our society and the way we live. In a one-of-a-kind year that has sparked unprecedented social movements and calls for reform, the way individuals view and conceptualize policy has greatly shifted. As a result, who shapes policies has become more important than ever.   I recently attended a panel discussion that covered the current status of tech policy from a diversity and inclusion perspective in both the private sector and the public sector. There were so many interesting points throughout the discussion, but one overarching…

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The Influencers: This One Opened Her Own Doors

A little quiz on the eve of the 2020 Presidential election: Can you name the vice presidential candidate who headed the Special Victims Unit in a New York City DA’s office?  Maybe you know the VP candidate who spent years working as a lawyer in a real estate firm? How about the one whose first political campaign described her as a tough-on-crime conservative Democrat? Surely, you can name the first woman to run on a major party presidential ticket?  In case you haven’t guessed, it’s all the same person. She ran in the 1984 race, so if you’re a Baby…

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Everything Nobody Ever Told Me: Dealing with Difficult People - The Provocateur

Just because other people are fueled by drama, doesn’t mean you need to attend the performance. – Cheryl Richardson I was busily working away at my new firm when the head of my department crept into my office, eyes wide.  She hunched her shoulders down, looked around to make sure no one else was within earshot and said in a hushed tone, “Do you have a second?  I have to tell you something.”  She closed my office door.  She proceeded to tell me that a colleague had a problem with some work that I had done.  Her story didn’t ring…

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Soft Power in the Realm of Outer Space

In my opinion a space arms race is inevitable. It is inevitable because it is tied to economic and national security. The goal at this point is not to avoid what has been developing rapidly for the last 30 years or so, but to contain and manage it. The strategic placement of space weapons will not deter war but will increase fear. As I have mentioned in previous posts, space is now an integral part of our lives, and many countries are aiming to become space faring countries. As such a methodology must be in place to manage threats and…

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Am I wearing too many hats? Learning how to juggle it all: Trials have resumed, but not so fast!

On September 25, 2020, Judge Byrn, the Presiding Judge of Jackson County issued an immediate released that delayed trials in the 16th Judicial Circuit Court. Since March of 2020, there had been no jury trials in the Jackson County Courthouse downtown. October 5, 2020 was scheduled as the official date for trials to resume. Yes, you read that correctly, six whole months without jury trials in one of the busiest counties for prosecution in the U.S. However, Judge Byrn had previously held a Town Hall meeting informing the public that if someone in the courtroom tested positive for COVID-19, the courthouse…

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