PRINT PAGELitigator Roy Black Issues 'Call to Arms' at UM Law Commencement

The fellow University of Miami law graduate called on the latest class to advocate for "some deep problem, some complex issue, some radical injustice of our age."

Catherine Wilson | May 13, 2019 at 02:46 PM

Fifty years since graduating, famed litigator Roy Black offered a “call to arms” in a commencement address at the University of Miami School of Law.

Black, senior partner at Black, Srebnick, Kornspan & Stumpf in Miami, challenged new graduates at his alma mater to “detach from self-interest and serve others.”

Without naming President Donald Trump, Black took a few swipes at him and his administration.

Lawyers “stand up against the inhumane treatment of this dark era. We stand up against the cruelty, the oppression and racism,” Black said Saturday. “Will you be responsible to the truth even when our government cannot distinguish it from the lies? When it shamelessly insists that ‘truth isn’t truth’ or tries to distract us by claiming ‘alternative facts.’ ”

He urged all the new lawyers to defend the unlikable and stand up to bigotry. He asked the graduates “ to take on a personal commitment, to take on some deep problem, some complex issue, some radical injustice of our age — and become the advocate for it.”

Black noted he was speaking at the final commencement ceremony for outgoing law dean Patricia White, who is leaving after 10 years. He commended her for the school’s Law Without Walls program, and added, “I am proud to have a dean who believes in knocking down walls — instead of building them.”

Black’s clients have included Rush Limbaugh, Kelsey Grammer, Peter Max, Indy race car driver Helio Castroneves and William Kennedy Smith.


For the full text of his address, click here.

To view the video of his address, click here.