IAP Faculty

Along with Doris Cheng ’98, in 2016 we welcomed Elinor Leary ’03 as a co-program director. A USF law school alum and former Alameda County Deputy Public Defender, Elinor is a Trial Team Leader at The Veen Firm. She has also been the assistant clinical director of the USF School of Law Criminal and Juvenile Justice Clinic.

IAP recruits a diverse and distinguished volunteer faculty with extensive trial experience. Many are members of ABOTA and some are NITA trained, including retired Judge Patricia A. Williams and Joanne and Michael Roake. Many USF (and IAP) alumni return to teach; Lynn Duryee, Lawrence Cirelli, Joseph Zoucha, Benjamin Reyes III, Manny Fortes, and Brandi Hannagan have all participated for many years.

Represented firms sending faculty include Walkup, Melodia, Kelly & Schoenberger, Littler Mendelson, McNamara, Ney, Beatty, Slattery, Borges & Ambacher LLP, Alioto Law, Carlson, Calladine & Peterson LLP, and Hanson Bridgett, LLP. Also included are public defenders from San Francisco, Alameda and San Diego Counties as well as district attorneys from San Francisco and Oakland.

For the bench and jury trials the program brings in acting and retired judges. Judges from the San Francisco Superior Court include Judge Samuel Feng, Judge Monica F. Wiley, Judge Brendan P. Conroy and Judge Teri Jackson, the supervising judge for litigation involving asbestos and the California Environmental Quality Act. Judge George C. Hernandez, Jr. from the Superior Court of Alameda County and retired Judge Richard Bennett, currently with JAMS, have also participated.

In total, more than 60 faculty attorneys and judges join the two week program each year, giving students small group as well as one-on-one attention and critiques.


"The great feedback I received from prestigious judges and attorneys from all over the country, who sat down with me one on one to give me critical feedback on how to improve as a legal advocate, was priceless. These interactions gave me the confidence to not be afraid of public speaking and improve myself by speaking in public in a classroom setting, at networking events, or even in front of the mirror!"  — Ailakhuagbon Yvette Osumah ’17

“We took two trials through from beginning to end, and received excellent feedback from judges and practitioners. It was great to see the USF alumni network at work. It means a lot that they take the time to give back to us and contribute even with their hectic schedules.” — Jeffery M. Isaacs ’17

“One of the best decisions I made during my law school career was to participate in the Intensive Advocacy Program at USF. IAP provides an invaluable opportunity to any law student whether they aspire to be a trial attorney or simply desire to improve their public speaking skills. While it will take years for me to become an expert in the art of trial advocacy, I know that IAP has prepared me to hit the ground running in any legal setting and will set me apart from my peers.”  — Leslie Fales ’12