February 17, 2022

Our Network is Our Strength

Russ Feingold President

Russ Feingold
ACS President Russ Feingold

ACS is anchored by our network of over 250 student and lawyer chapters. We say this all the time, and I wanted to take a minute to uplift just what this means. We have all worked through unforeseen challenges these past two years, which is why it’s been particularly exciting to see our chapters more active than ever right now. Just this week, our chapters hosted dozens of events. These included our University of Missouri chapter’s event, “Equity Under the Law: Voting Rights with 82nd Attorney General of the United States Eric Holder, Jr.” and our Houston chapters coming together to host, “Civil Rights and Racial Healing: Examining the History and Future of Reparations in America.” Multiple chapters hosted events explaining Critical Race Theory, what it is and what it is not, and its impact on teaching American history, and other chapters explored court reform and D.C. statehood.

You can always find a list of upcoming ACS events, both chapter and national events, on our website. Bookmark the link so you can keep tabs on everything going on!

I’m excited to hear that some chapters are already thinking about and even planning candidate forum events as part of our Run.Vote.Work. initiative. As a non-profit educational organization, candidate forums organized by ACS chapters play an important role in educating voters. As you know, so often we see big ticket candidate forums for federal races and gubernatorial races, but it can be harder for voters to learn about the candidates running for Secretary of State or Attorney General in their state. These positions have enormous impact on our states, election security, and the rule of law. We can fill an important gap by offering an opportunity for voters to learn more about these positions and the people running for them.

I also want to take a moment to commemorate the late Walter Dellinger, who was a friend, a colleague, and a mentor to so many in our network. Walter was a tireless champion for civil rights and the rule of law and inspired generations of lawyers to dedicate their careers to improving the lives of all Americans. Our country is a better place thanks to his selfless leadership and thoughtful legal counsel, including during his tenure as Assistant Attorney General and head of the Office of Legal Counsel and later as acting Solicitor General. ACS was honored to bestow Dellinger with our Lifetime Achievement Award in 2020, and we are grateful for the guidance and leadership he provided as a member of our Board of Advisors. His work and memory will continue to inspire us.

We are eagerly awaiting the President’s historic nomination to fill Justice Breyer’s seat on the Supreme Court. I’ve been asked repeatedly in recent weeks about the Senate confirmation process, specifically what it looks like outside of the public hearing. To shed some light on the process, I chatted with Jeanne Hruska on this week’s Broken Law podcast episode about my experience with Senate confirmation processes and the vetting of nominees that takes place behind the scenes. Take a listen if you haven’t already.