RALEIGH, N.C. - Campbell Law School Assistant Professor of Law Amos Jones delivered a faculty workshop and a public lecture at the University of Kentucky on Friday, Feb. 1. Kicking off Black History Month observances, Jones’s lecture was titled “The Dismantling of De Jure Segregation in Kentucky: How Slave Religion, Strategic Voting, and Creative Lawyering Broke Barriers in a Socially Advanced Border State.” Jones connected an assortment of historical anomalies and firsts to paint a complex portrait of mid-Twentieth Century uplift in the Bluegrass State, frequently relating American religious history to the development of constitutional law.
The 60-minute lecture was co-sponsored by the university’s Martin Luther King, Jr. Cultural Center, Black Law Students Association, Black Student Union, NAACP, Minorities in Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Related Sciences, and Program in African-American and Africana Studies.
The lecture marked Jones’s second address in as many years in his native state.
“Kentucky presents some surprising and delightful contrasts to the typical historical narrative of post-Reconstruction Southern racism,” said Jones. “My objective was to empower students and to engage colleagues in re-imagining widely held assumptions in light of very colorful historical realities in Kentucky. I shared accounts, for example, of Vice President Richard Johnson’s insistence on social equality for his half-black daughters and his half-black common-law wife in the 1830s, as well as Mary Todd Lincoln’s granting land in 1862 to a dissident group of church folk determined to back the Union, thus forming the city’s third black Baptist church that stands to this day next door to her family home on Lexington’s Main Street.”
Jones teaches in the area of contracts and consults in the areas of employment discrimination and appellate constitutional litigation. In April 2012, he delivered expert testimony at an oversight hearing in Washington, D.C., on the most effective ways to improve enforcement of D.C.'s Human Rights Act of 1978, and in November he appeared as an invited guest of the law faculty at the Universidad de los Andes in Bogota, Colombia, critiquing that country’s experimentation with affirmative action remedies for blacks there.
Before coming to Campbell Law, Jones practiced in the international trade and commercial litigation groups of Bryan Cave LLP in Washington, D.C. Prior to entering the legal profession, he was a journalist for Pulitzer Prize-winning newspapers in Georgia, Kentucky, New York, and North Carolina.
Jones graduated with honors in political science from Emory University, where he was a Harry S. Truman Scholar, earned his Master of Science from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism, and earned his J.D. from Harvard Law School, where he served as an executive editor of both the Harvard BlackLetter Law Journal and the Harvard Human Rights Journal. While at Harvard, he was awarded a Fulbright Postgraduate Scholarship, on which he spent his first year out of law school as a visiting scholar in the Centre for Comparative Constitutional Studies at Australia’s University of Melbourne.
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Since its founding in 1976, the Norman Adrian Wiggins School of Law at Campbell University has developed lawyers who possess moral conviction, social compassion and professional competence, and who view the law as a calling to serve others. The school has been recognized by the American Bar Association (ABA) as having the nation’s top Professionalism Program and by the American Academy of Trial Lawyers for having the nation’s best Trial Advocacy Program. Campbell Law boasts more than 3,400 alumni, including more than 2,400 who reside and work in North Carolina. For 26 years, Campbell Law’s overall record of success on the North Carolina Bar Exam has been unsurpassed by any other North Carolina law school. In September 2009, Campbell Law relocated to a state-of-the-art building in downtown Raleigh. For more information, visit http://law.campbell.edu.
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