Lunch'n Explore: April 20-Presidential Ethics in the Trump White House

Lunch'n Explore events feature a talk and a lunch in a tabled setting.

Event Description: What ethical laws, rules and norms guide the behavior of the President of the United States and those who work for him or her in the White House? Where does the presdient and his staff look for guidance in navigating the grey areas that inevitably arise in governing? Professor Richard Painter has been one of those people to whom the president looked for guidance. He served as the chief ethics lawyer during the adminstration of President George W. Bush. He brings that perspective and experience to his observations on the ethical decision-making in the current White House.

Event Information: Friday, April 20, 2018, 11:45 a.m.-1:30 p.m., Opus Hall Room 201, University of St. Thomas Minneapolis Campus (seating will begin at 11:40 a.m. with meal service immediately thereafter)

Event Speaker: Professor Richard W. Painter is the S. Walter Richey Professor of Corporate Law at the University of Minnesota Law School. Professor Painter received his B.A., summa cum laude, in history from Harvard University and his J.D. from Yale University, where he was an editor of the Yale Journal on Regulation. Following law school, he clerked for Judge John T. Noonan Jr. of the United States Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit and later practiced at Sullivan & Cromwell in New York City and Finn Dixon & Herling in Stamford, Conn. He has been a professor at the University of Oregon School of Law, the University of Illinois College of Law, and, since 1007, the University of Minnesota Law School.

From February 2005 to July 2007, during the George W. Bush administration, he was associate counsel to the president in the White House Counsel’s office, serving as the chief ethics lawyer for the president, White House employees, and senior nominees to Senate-confirmed positions in the executive branch. He is a member of the American Law Institute and is a reporter for the new ALI Principles of Government Ethics. He has also been active in the Professional Responsibility Section of the American Bar Association. He is a board member and vice chair of Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington as well as a founding board member of Take Back our Republic, a campaign finance reform organization. Painter has also been active in law reform efforts aimed at deterring securities fraud and improving ethics of corporate managers and lawyers. A key provision of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002, requiring the SEC to issue rules of professional responsibility for securities lawyers, was based on earlier proposals Painter made in law review articles and to the ABA and the SEC.

Painter is the author or coauthor of three books: Getting the Government America Deserves: How Ethics Reform Can Make a Difference (Oxford University Press, 2009), Better Bankers, Better Banks: Promoting Good Business Through Contractual Commitment, with Professor Claire Hill (University of Chicago Press, 2015), and Taxation only with Representation: The Conservative Conscience and Campaign Finance Reform (Take Back our Republic, 2016). He has written op-eds on government ethics for various publications, including the New York Times, Washington Post and Los Angeles Times, and is regularly interviewed on government ethics and corporate ethics by national news organizations, including The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell (MSNBC), Anderson Cooper 360 (CNN), CNN News, Fox News, National Public Radio’s All Things Considered, and Minnesota Public Radio News. Painter is the coauthor of two casebooks: Securities Litigation and Enforcement (with Margaret Sachs and Donna Nagy; West Academic Publishing, 2003; second edition, 2007; third edition, 2011) and Professional and Personal Responsibilities of the Lawyer (with Judge John T. Noonan Jr.; Foundation Press, 1997; second edition, 2001; third edition, 2011). He has written dozens of articles, book reviews, and essays.

Fee for the event:  $30 per person (registration deadline for this event is April 12)

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