In 1972, a student-faculty committee at William Mitchell recommended starting a law review. Surprisingly, the idea was controversial. Law reviews, many believed, would be too much work for the Mitchell students—all of whom attended part-time, many of whom worked full time.
Luckily, the William Mitchell Law Review had a champion in Professor Mike Steenson.
Under his leadership, volume one of the William Mitchell Law Review was published in 1974 and immediately became an effective tool for lawyers and judges—the first citation to the publication appeared in a 1975 Minnesota Supreme Court decision.
Since then, it has increased in usefulness and relevance, publishing work by Chief Justice of the United States Warren E. Burger ’31, four other U.S. Supreme Court justices; Vice President Walter Mondale, and U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar, as well as many other distinguished contributors.
Today, it ranks among the top 15 percent of the nation’s 507 student-edited law reviews for citations by the courts, and Steenson is still serving as the law review’s faculty advisor.
Recently, more than 200 current and former William Mitchell Law Review editors gathered to honor Steenson and thank him for the opportunity to write for such a prestigious law journal.
Attendees paid tribute to Steenson by presenting him with the Marcy S. Wallace Award for Excellence in Leadership for his contributions in shaping the review from its first days. Steenson was recognized not only for being the review’s founder and longtime faculty advisor, but for his inspiring mentoring and leadership.
In addition, it was announced that former law review staff, along with supporters of William Mitchell, have raised $900,000 for the Steenson Law Review Endowment, which will support the venerable publication as well as its faculty advisor for years to come.
Volume 39, which includes articles on the U.S.-Dakota War of 1862, medical device law, and more, is currently available on the law review’s website.