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About the Authors

Jill Barton

Photo - Jill  Barton
Jill Barton is a former appellate judicial clerk and an award-winning journalist. She earned her bachelor of journalism magna cum laude from the University of Missouri and also studied at Oxford University's Keble College, where she founded and co-edited Ox-Tales, a compilation of students' short stories. Professor Barton worked as a journalist for more than a decade, mostly for the Associated Press (AP) and other news organizations in Florida. As an AP correspondent, she regularly published news stories in The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Miami Herald. She later received her M.S. in journalism from the University of Kansas, where she taught advanced reporting, and her J.D. summa cum laude from the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

In law school, Professor Barton received the West Publishing Award for Outstanding Scholarly Accomplishment and won the National Association of Women Lawyers student writing competition. She also served as managing editor of the UMKC Law Review and as a teaching assistant for the school's legal writing program. Prior to joining the Miami Law faculty, Professor Barton clerked for Judge Leslie B. Rothenberg at Florida's Third District Court of Appeal.

She and colleague Rachel H. Smith are the authors of The Handbook for the New Legal Writer, a comprehensive legal writing textbook for first-year law students. Professor Barton is also the author of A Show Donít Tell Lesson on Plain Language, 70 Clarity (2013).

Publications:
The Handbook for the New Legal Writer (Aspen Coursebooks: 2014).
 A Show Donít Tell Lesson on Plain Language, 70 Clarity (2013).

 

Rachel H. Smith

Photo - Rachel H.  Smith Professor Smith completed her B.A. with honors at UC Santa Cruz and earned her J.D. at the UC Berkeley School of Law (Boalt Hall) in 2002. During law school, she was awarded a NAPIL/VISTA Summer Fellowship to work at the Legal Aid Society of Columbus, Ohio and interned at Equal Rights Advocates in San Francisco, California.

After graduation, Professor Smith worked at Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP where she litigated a variety of complex cases in state and federal courts, primarily focusing on intellectual property disputes. In 2007, Professor Smith joined the Legal Analysis, Research, and Writing Faculty at Santa Clara University School of Law and was awarded the Legal Research and Writing Professor of the Year Award in 2008 and 2010. 

In 2009, she won an ALWD Teaching Grant for a legal writing podcast series entitled "Perk Up Your Pens." She is the author of The Legal Writing Survival Guide (Carolina Academic Press 2012), which is a book that aims to help law students and lawyers solve common legal writing problems. 

Professor Smith has presented at national and regional legal writing conferences on issues relating to the use of technology to teach legal writing, the value of collaborating with other professors, and the need to inspire hope and positivity in the legal writing classroom. 

At Miami Law she teaches in the Legal Communications and Research Skills program.