SLU LAW Summations

The SLU LAW Summations podcast is a 15-20 minute dive into a diverse mix of legal topics. Each episode will explore a fresh legal matter with a member of the Saint Louis University School of Law faculty.

Host: Maria Tsikalas, Editor, School of Law Communications 

Producer: Jessica Ciccone, Director of Communications 

Have an idea for a podcast topic? Email

A Deep Dive into the Trial of Governor Greitens 

The trial of Missouri Governor Eric Greitens has captivated the local and nationwide media and general public. The case is complex and the trial of a public official in office is rare. The charges are unique and provide an interesting legal lesson. In this episode, we are joined by Anders Walker, the Lillie Myers professor of law and associate dean for research and engagement. Dean Walker is a criminal law expert who has been following the case since the indictment and is here to help us unpack the issues on trial.



Public Health in the Era of Alternative Facts

Broad shifts in U.S. policy have long affected population health in our country and beyond.  As we face an era of alternative facts, distrust in research and isolationism, we experience a whole new set of questions.  How do we create policies that keep us safe when we can’t agree on the facts? In this episode, we are joined by Professor Rob Gatter.  Rob is the director of SLU LAW’s Center for Health Law Studies. The Center is hosting the 30th annual health symposium on April 6. Public Health Law in the Era of Alternative Facts, Isolationism, and the One Percent will be a full day symposium in Scott Hall discussing how broad shifts in U.S. policy affect population health

Today's Tax Law: Changes, Challenges and Consequences

This January we rang in the new year with a new piece of tax legislation. One that was laden with controversy and confusion, not to mention many revisions, often making it difficult to decipher fact from fiction. Since we're now well into tax season, we wanted to explore what this new law means for us average citizens, and what we can expect in the years to come. In this episode, we are joined by Professor Kerry Ryan. Kerry has been teaching a variety of tax law classes at SLU LAW since joining the faculty in 2005. She also serves as the chair of the ABA section of taxation: teaching taxation committee.


Regulating Big Pharma: Lawsuits and Reforms

Pharmaceutical companies have long been the target of public criticism, presidential scrutiny and legal recourse. From the opioid epidemic to the dramatic rising costs of life saving medications, pharmaceutical companies stand accused of profiting while the public health of the country suffers. In this episode we are joined by Professor Liz McCuskey. Liz is a visiting professor in the Center for Health Law Studies where she teaches a course on Food & Drug Law and policy. 


Alcohol Regulation in a Time of Tranformation 

The alcohol industry is one of the most highly regulated industries in the United States.  With the advent of the large conglomerates and the explosion of micro-breweries and craft distilleries, the industry is ever changing. In this epsiode we are joined by Professor Gary Rutledge. Gary joined SLU LAW after serving as Vice President and Zone General Counsel in the North American Zone for Anheuser-Busch InBev. He currently teaches a course at SLU LAW on alcohol regulation.  



The Changing Landscape of Immigration Law in the U. S. 

It is hard to get through the day without hearing about or discussing immigration in the United States. The landscape is challenging and law under the new administration is evolving.  In this episode we are joined by Professor Richard Middleton. Professor Middleton is a practicing immigration law attorney and an adjunct professor at SLU LAW teaching immigration law. He is also a professor of political science at University of Missouri St. Louis. 



The Future of Disability Law in the United States

As the current administration grapples with what to do with health care in the United States, the future of 15 million people with disabilities, including children and seniors, hangs in the balance. In this episode we are joined by Elizabeth Pendo, the Joseph J. Simeone Professor of Law in the SLU LAW Center for Health Law Studies.  Professor Pendo is an expert on disability law and disability discrimination. 



The Second Amendment in Missouri and Beyond

The Second Amendment was a point of contention on the campaign trail and continues to be a hot topic in today’s legislature.  Recently, Missouri lawmakers expanded gun rights in the state including conceal and carry laws. In this episode we are joined by Anders Walker, the Lillie Myers Professor of Law. Professor Walker is a criminal law and constitutional law expert. 


Sports Law: On the field and in the courtroom

From contract negotiations to trademark protection, wage disputes and stadium deals, the practice of sports law spans across disciplines and interests. Each aspect has wide ranging implications, especially here in St. Louis as we navigate the prospects of a new stadium and a new sport.  In this episode we are joined by two distinguished alums and adjunct professors Nick Brockmeyer and Garrett Broshuis who co-teach a course in sports law. 



Prescription Drug Abuse: The Pharmacy and the Law

Prescription drug abuse is a prevalent problem across the country. What started as a health care issue has slowly become a problem facing our criminal justice system.  As our society grapples with the issues, many are left behind with little to no help. In this episode we are joined by Professor Liz Chiarello. Professor Chiarello is a sociologist with SLU’s department of sociology and anthropology. She holds a secondary appointment at the School of Law with the Center for Health Law Studies.  


The Gig Economy: In the Court and On the Street

The gig economy - a term you may have heard a time or two in the past few years - is defined as an environment in which temporary positions are common and organizations contract with independent workers for short-term engagements. The gig economy has become popular through companies like Uber and Lyft, but as these companies grow so do the issues with labor law regulations. In this episode we are joined by Professor Miriam Cherry. Professor Cherry is currently the director of the Wefel Center for Employment Law and is an expert in the gig economy.


The Call for Clemency and the Criminal Justice System

Every year petitions for clemency collect on the Governor's desk. Recently the case of Timothy Prosser has gained attention. The Riverfront Times chronicled the story of this Missouri man who was sentenced to life in prison for non-violent crime. In this episode we are joined by John Ammann, McDonnell Professor of Justice in American Society, supervisor in SLU's Civil Advocacy clinic and one of the founders of the Community Coalition for Clemency. Every year Professor Ammann and his students petition the Governor for clemency on behalf of their clients.


Mergers in Healthcare and the Consumer

This year the healthcare industry has been abuzz with the news that Aetna will move to merge with Humana and Anthem with Cigna.  The U.S. Department of Justice does not agree and is taking the companies to court in a public fight over consumer rights.  In this episode we are joined by Tim Greaney, co-director of the Center for Health Law Studies and Chester A. Myers Professor of Law. Professor Greaney began his career in the DOJ’s antitrust division and has testified numerous times before Congress, most recently before the House Judiciary Subcommittee in late 2015. 


Starting a Small Business

St. Louis has a long history of being home to entrepreneurs. The city has served as a launching ground for many of America’s biggest and best companies and the region continues to thrive in a variety of new directions. But most of our large companies once started as small businesses. In this episode we are joined by Professor Dana Malkus of the SLU LAW’s Entrepreneurship and Community Development Clinic. Professor Malkus works with local small businesses and nonprofits to get their ideas and companies off the ground.  

The Patent Battle in the Supreme Court

The U.S. Supreme Court recently put out a ruling on a critical patent case in Cuozzo Speed Technologies v Lee. The case addressed two important questions associated with how the United States Patent Office reviews granted patents. In this episode, Professor Yvette Liebesman discusses the case and implications of the ruling on patent law.

The Fight Over Public Education 

There is currently a $42 million dollar fight over education in the city of St. Louis. Charter schools are staking claim on their funding while St. Louis Public Schools are insisting they are owed funds for desegregation. It is a battle that has become commonplace across the country. In this episode we are joined by Michael Wolff, dean of SLU LAW, to take a closer look at what is really at stake.

Healthcare Legislation in Missouri

Recently, the Missouri legislature has passed two bills that change the way health insurance is managed in our state.  These changes have been a long time coming and finally put Missouri on par with many other states. In this episode, we are joined by Sidney Watson, the Jane and Bruce Robert Professor in the SLU LAW Center for Health Law Studies.  Professor Watson teaches Health Law Policy and Advocacy where she empowers her students to enable change in Missouri legislation. 

Understanding the Ferguson Consent Decree

The City of Ferguson, Missouri recently voted to approve the consent decree put forth by the U.S. Department of Justice. The document included provisions that were meant to ensure protection of the constitutional and other legal rights of all members of the community. This is not the first time a consent decree has been used by the DOJ. In this episode, Assistant Professor Justin Hansford takes us through the process and how it has been used in the recent past.


Religious Freedom and the First Amendment

From Indiana to Georgia and North Carolina, to right here in Missouri, religious freedom has been at the center of legislation presented amidst much state and nationwide controversy and discussion around issues of LGBT discrimination. Despite having recently been shut down in Missouri, this type of legislation will likely resurface and goes beyond the present. Associate Professor Chad Flanders joins us for this episode to explain religious freedom, the Constitution and the relationship to LGBT issues. Flanders is a constitutional law professor and a scholar of religion and the First Amendment..


Policing the Police: Licensing and Decertification for Police Officers

Most of us are lucky enough to only have positive interactions with police officers. But across the nation there are some cases of notorious police misconduct and sometimes, because of licensing issues, these officers are allowed to work in other jurisdictions. Professor Emeritus Roger Goldman has spent the past 35 years studying the process of decertification for police officers and has recently worked to bring forth legislation to close these loopholes.


Dying with Dignity: The Ethics and Legality

This year’s annual health law symposium will address the ongoing ethical and legal questions about policies and practices that impact utilization and quality of life that improve dying. Beyond the headlines of right to die legislation, many patients and their families are faced with hardships and ethical dilemmas. In this podcast Assistant Professor of Health Law & Ethics Kelly Dineen will explore the policies that can address issues of untimely and premature death and improving the quality of dying.  

Choosing the Next Vice President

Every election, months before an official candidate is nominated, the names of potential vice presidents are floated around. For each presidential candidate there are different factors to consider, and over the years the role of the vice president seems to have changed. This podcast, featuring Vincent C. Immel Professor of Law Joel K. Goldstein, will explore what the future holds for the candidates and for the office itself.

The Internet Wants You to Lose Your Job

It only takes one tweet, one Facebook post or even just an overheard conversation shared without your knowledge to go viral and your job is in jeopardy. Something that was once overlooked by HR departments because they occurred outside of the office can no longer be ignored. Companies are having to rethink their approach to employee relations and perhaps how they can protect themselves from legal recourse. Callis Family Professor of Law Matt Bodie explores the legal implications of social media and the workplace.

Shattering the Glass Ceiling

This year’s Public Law Review symposium will cover the topic of women in the workplace and the change needed for equality. Professor Marcia McCormick, director of the William C. Wefel Center for Employment Law, addresses inequalities, stereotypes and discrimination facing women today in advance of the “Shattering the Glass Ceiling” symposium