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Seminar Features Miami Dolphins Wide Receiver Davone Bess

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Wide receiver Davone Bess of the Miami Dolphins, who straightened out his life after getting into trouble as a teenager, will be one of three panelists in a seminar on juvenile justice at Miami Law on Tuesday, Sept. 25.

Sponsored by two student organizations, the Child Advocacy & Family Law Society and the Entertainment & Sports Law Society, the panel discussion will include two other people with their own perspective of the juvenile justice system – Judge Ellen Sue Venzer, JD '87, and Dale Dobuler, JD '11.

Judge Venzer, of Florida's Eleventh Judicial Circuit, presided earlier over juvenile dependency cases. Dobuler is a former superintendent for the Florida Department of Juvenile Corrections.

Besides being an NFL player, Bess is the founder of the Bess Route Foundation, which is dedicated to helping underprivileged children develop positive lifestyles. As a teenager, Bess, raised by single mom in Oakland, Calif., was incarcerated for 15 months after allowing a friend to put stolen items in his car, an experience that changed his life.

"We hope that this dynamic cast of characters will make for an interesting dialogue and shed some light on this often overlooked division of criminal law," said Nima Tahmassebi, a second-year law student who organized the seminar. "I intend to use this event as a platform to promote programs within Miami Law that are dedicated to helping those children who need it most. In many ways this event will be a rallying call for the students of Miami Law to realize the leadership position they will soon be taking in our community, and to start doing what they can to fulfill that role."

Moderated by Professor Mary Anne Franks, the seminar will be held in Room E352 at 12:30 p.m.