Public Law Review Symposium 2014

Friday, February 28, 2014 -
9:00am to 9:00pm

United We Stand or United We Fall: The Reunification of St. Louis City and County

In 1876, the citizens of St. Louis County voted to separate St. Louis City and County in what became known as the “Great Divorce.” Today, the “Great Divorce” has reemerged as a hot topic of debate in Missouri. Some St. Louis leaders and citizens advocate for a city-county reunification while others remain staunchly opposed. This symposium brings together government officials, academics, and business leaders to engage in a candid discussion of the potential effects of such a reunification.


Register Here


Sen. Richard Lugar

President, Lugar Center; Professor of Practice and Distinguished Scholar, Indiana University School of Global and International Studies; Visiting Distinguished Professor, Georgetown University Global Public Policy Institute

Richard Lugar is president of the Lugar Center, a non-profit organization focusing on nuclear nonproliferation, food security, foreign aid effectiveness, and other critical issues. He is a fifth generation Hoosier who left office as the longest-serving member of Congress in Indiana history. In addition to being recognized as a gifted local and state leader, Lugar is a respected national and international statesman, exercising leadership on critical issues such as food security, nuclear non-proliferation, energy independence and free trade. He holds 46 honorary degrees from colleges and universities in 15 states and the District of Columbia, and was the fourth person ever named Outstanding Legislator by the American Political Science Association.

As the two-term mayor of Indianapolis (1968-75), he envisioned the unification of the city and surrounding Marion County into one government. Unigov, as Lugar's plan was called, set the city on a path of uninterrupted economic growth. He served three terms on the U.S. Advisory Commission on Intergovernmental Relations, including two terms as the vice-chair of the commission, and served as president of the National League of Cities.

Hon. Francis G. Slay (’80)

Mayor, St. Louis

Francis G. Slay made history in 2013 as the City of St. Louis' first mayor to be elected to a fourth, four-year term in office. It is both Slay’s mission and passion to ensure that St. Louis strives to be a great and prosperous city; one that is healthier, cleaner, safer, better educated, more open to diversity and more fun. Slay strives to lead a city that attracts residents and businesses from throughout the region — and from other regions — through civic, commercial, and political cooperation aimed to consistently improve quality of life. Slay has called for City of St. Louis to re-enter St. Louis County as a municipality.

The Slay administration and its public and private partners have received national and international recognition for St. Louis's renaissance. Key initiatives have focused on improving the quality of life in neighborhoods, the revitalization of North St. Louis, better public education and the efficient and equitable delivery of city services. In May 2007 downtown St. Louis's revitalization was the subject of a Preserve America Presidential Award, the nation's highest honor for historic preservation. Under Mayor Slay's leadership, billions of dollars have been invested throughout St. Louis. The city has one of the country's fastest-growing communities of college-educated residents and some of the fastest-growing bio sciences and financial service sectors.

Prior to being elected Mayor, Francis G. Slay served as a St. Louis Alderman for 10 years, then as president of the St. Louis Board of Aldermen from 1995 to 2001. An attorney by trade, Slay joined the law firm of Guilfoil, Petzall and Shoemake in 1981, where he practiced for 20 years and became a partner specializing in commercial litigation and business law.

Charlie A. Dooley

County Executive, St. Louis County

Charlie A. Dooley grew up in St. Louis and graduated from Wellston High School. In 1965, he enlisted in the U.S. Army and was later stationed in Vietnam, receiving an honorable discharge in 1968. After his military duty, he went to work at McDonnell-Douglas Co. Mr. Dooley enjoyed a 31-year career there before retiring and moving on to a new vocation in public service. During his years at McDonnell Douglas, Dooley also became more active in citizen affairs, being elected Committeeman of Normandy Township. He went to become mayor of the City of Northwoods. While mayor, he served as President of the Missouri Chapter of Black Mayors, President of the St. Louis County Municipal League, Co-Chair of the Normandy Communities Forum, and Treasurer of the Mayors of Small Cities organization. He later became a member of the St. Louis County Council. In 2003, he was appointed to the position of St. Louis County Executive. Dooley was elected to the office of County Executive in 2004, and re-elected in 2006 and 2010. As County Executive, Dooley now manages a county of one million people and a budget in excess of $500 million.

D. Samuel Dotson III

Chief of Police, City of St. Louis

Col. Sam Dotson was selected Chief of Police on December 14, 2012, 19 years after joining the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department. Dotson manages the second-largest police department in Missouri and is responsible for the department’s budget, which translates to $173 million annually. He oversees 1,319 sworn officers and 548 civilian employees and is responsible for the public safety of 318,000 residents who live in the City of St. Louis and thousands of visitors who visit the city every year. Dotson has served in numerous divisions within the department, including the board of police commissioners, office of the chief, intelligence division, operational planning and the Fourth, Seventh and Ninth police districts.

E. Terrence (Terry) Jones

Founder’s Professor of Political Science and Public Policy Administration, University of Missouri-St. Louis

Terry Jones’ books include “Fragmented by Design: Why St. Louis Has So Many Governments and The Metropolitan Chase: Politics and Policies in Urban America.” He has served as a consultant to more than 50 local governments within the St. Louis region.

Tishaura O. Jones

Treasurer, City of St. Louis

Building on a background as a public servant, financial services professional, and educator, Tishaura O. Jones was sworn in as treasurer of the City of St. Louis on January 1, 2013. She is the first woman to hold the office in the history of St. Louis. 

Jones is the chief investment and cash management officer of the city. Prior to becoming treasurer, Jones established a track record of leadership in the Missouri House of Representatives, where she served from 2008-2012 and was the first African-American and first female Assistant Minority Floor Leader. During her tenure, she was a strong advocate for education, women’s reproductive rights, and healthcare, and economic development.   

Virvus Jones

Former Comptroller, City of St. Louis

Virvus Jones was first elected to the St. Louis Board of Aldermen in 1981. After one term on the Board of Aldermen, he was appointed the city’s assessor in 1986. In 1989, Jones was appointed comptroller, where he served until 1995. His oldest daughter is currently serving as the St. Louis’ treasurer.

Dave Leipholtz (’10)

Community-Based Study Director, Better Together

As a lifelong resident of St. Louis, Dave Leipholtz is committed to improving the future of the region. His career reflects his dedication to such key issues as education and economic development. In his role as the community-based study director for Better Together, Dave brings nearly a decade of experience in both the private and public sectors. He most recently served as the manager of public policy and operations for the Regional Business Council, where he coordinated with state officials, local leaders and key stakeholders to achieve member businesses’ collective legislative agenda.

'Dave’s strong understanding of community outreach stems not only from working on such high-level campaigns as Tommy Sowers’ 2010 bid for Congress, but also from running for state legislative office himself. Additionally, from 2008 to 2009, Dave worked for the Missouri Democratic Party; he designed and implemented a field campaign for a district of more than 100,000 voters.

Steven H. Steinglass

Dean Emeritus and Professor Emeritus, Cleveland-Marshall College of Law at Cleveland State University

A graduate of the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and the Columbia University School of Law, he is a leading authority on state constitutional law and the co-author of The Ohio Constitution: A Reference Guide (2004). Currently, Steinglass is working as the senior policy advisor for the recently-created bipartisan Ohio Constitutional Modernization Commission. During the 2012-2013 academic year, he was a distinguished visiting professor of law at SLU LAW.

Todd Swanstrom

E. Desmond Lee Professor of Community Collaboration and Public Policy Administration at the University of Missouri-St. Louis

Todd Swanstrom co-author of the award-winning “Place Matters: Metropolitics for the Twenty-First Century (3rd ed. Forthcoming 2014).” His latest book (co-edited with Clarissa Hayward), “Justice and the American Metropolis,” was published by University of Minnesota Press in 2011.

Since 2004, as part of the MacArthur Foundation’s Building Resilient Regions Network, Swanstrom has published research on local responses to the foreclosure crisis and efforts to increase employment of women, minorities and low-income persons in construction. His research currently focuses on community development and neighborhood change, especially in “weak market” metros. He is using the resources of his endowed professorship to support the Community Builders Network of Metro St. Louis, an alliance of community development nonprofits working to build vibrant neighborhoods that support a stronger and more competitive regional economy.

Anders Walker

Professor of Law, Saint Louis University School of Law

Anders Walker’s research and teaching focus on intersections between constitutional law, criminal law, and legal history. His articles have appeared or are forthcoming in the Columbia Law Review, the Washington University Law Review, the Wisconsin Law Review, the Hastings Law Journal, and the Florida State University Law Review.


Note: Schedule subject to change.

8:30 – 9:00 a.m. Registration
9:00 - 9:05 a.m. Introduction and Welcome by Dean Wolff
9:05 - 9:20 a.m. Opening Remarks: Mayor Francis Slay
9:20 - 9:35 a.m. Opening Remarks: County Executive Charlie Dooley
9:35 - 10:15 a.m. Keynote Address: Senator Richard Lugar
10:15 - 10:30 a.m. Questions
10:30 - 10:40 p.m. Break
10:40 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. Panel 1: Local Organization Leaders and their Roles in a Reunification 
(includes 15 min of questions) (Speakers talk for 20-25 min)

Joe Reagan
Jim Buford
Dave Leipholtz
12:00 - 1:00 p.m. Break
1:00 - 2:20 p.m. Panel 2: A Reunification's Effect at State and Local Levels 
(includes 15 min of questions) (Speakers talk for 20-25 min)

Anders Walker
Steven Steinglass
Tishaura Jones
2:20 - 2:30 p.m. Break
2:30 - 3:50 p.m. Panel 3: A Reunification's Effect on Crime and Safety 
(includes 15 min of questions) (Speakers talk for 20-25 min)

Chief Sam Dotson
Terry Jones
Chief Jon Belmar
3:50 - 4:00 p.m. Break
4:00 - 5:20 p.m. Panel 4: The Government's Role in Urbanization 
(includes 15 min of questions) (Speakers talk for 20-25 min)

Todd Swanstrom
Virvus Jones
Ryan Rippel
5:20 - 5:25 p.m. Closing Remarks
5:25 p.m. End