The J. Reuben Clark Law Society consists of thousands of attorneys and other law school graduates from around the world. Our membership includes leaders and aspiring leaders pursuing a myriad of professions, from politics to law, to academia, to corporate governance and beyond.
The Law Society was established in 1988. In celebration of its 30th anniversary, the following highlight video was shared at the 2018 Leadership Conference.
The mission statement of the J. Reuben Clark Law Society is comprehensive and clear: “We affirm the strength brought to the law by a lawyer’s religious conviction. We strive through public service and professional excellence to promote fairness and virtue founded upon the rule of law.” While many legal professional organizations promote legal education and collegiality, very few have the unique foundation of religious conviction—conviction that we have a God-given responsibility to promote the rule of law and use our legal skills to serve our sisters and brothers. The Law Society provides its members with unique opportunities to learn and serve through their association with others who are motivated by this conviction. Membership of the Law Society extends to all legal professionals and law students worldwide who support this mission, regardless of where they attended law school and independent of religious or political affiliations.
Because strength often comes through concerted effort and supportive networks, the Law Society hosts events centered on local chapters, regional gatherings, and Society-wide events—primarily the Fireside broadcast and Annual Conference. These events foster the development of strong professional relationships and friendships. Learning from each other’s experiences, identifying colleagues with complementary professional skills, and finding wise mentors, all based on a shared foundation of moral conviction, are just a few of the informal benefits the Law Society provides.
Continuing legal education is often provided at these events and 30+ hours of continuing legal education are offered each year in conjunction with BYU’s Education Week under the direction of the Law Society. These educational offerings help promote the professional excellence that is a key aspect of the Law Society’s mission. The Law Society focuses on providing education that not only hones legal skills but that uniquely underscores the ways religious convictions should influence our professional practices.
Public service is primarily promoted and provided at the local chapter level. Helping others with their legal needs is fundamental to fulfilling the Law Society mission. The Law Society encourages public service by spotlighting the many ways local chapters and individual members are providing service, hopefully sparking ideas and identifying possibilities for others. Moreover, the Law Society is currently providing service opportunities in the criminal justice arena through our broad collaboration with the NAACP. The Law Society promotes public service in all its facets, but because of the key role religious convictions play in our mission, religious freedom is an arena where particular expertise is found.
Relationship to BYU Law Alumni Chapter
The Law Society’s membership is fairly evenly split between BYU Law graduates and graduates of other law schools. This broad membership is one of the key distinctions between the BYU Law Alumni Chapter and the Law Society. The Law Society needs and values its non-BYU graduates, and their contributions are immense. Moreover, BYU Law gratefully acknowledges that its students receive a great deal of support, particularly in finding employment opportunities, from non-BYU grads. On the flip side, the Law Society could not function as it currently does without the support of BYU and BYU Law. BYU President Kevin Worthen and other key administrators at BYU, particularly the dean of BYU Law, Gordon Smith, invest time and energy into ensuring the success of the Law Society. Employees of BYU Law from External Relations, Marketing and Communications, IT, and Finance devote significant amounts of time providing up front and behind the scenes support for the Law Society. Accordingly, while being sensitive to the fact that the Law Society is not simply another name for a BYU Law alumni group, BYU Law is appropriately given special recognition, access and other privileges because of its direct sponsorship of the Law Society.