Judges needed for 2021 ABA Client Counseling Regional Competition on Feb. 5-6

Photo of Grace Massarelli and Amber Younce posing with their coach Zack Anstett '18

RALEIGH — Campbell Law School will serve as a regional host for the 2021 American Bar Association (ABA) Client Counseling Competition. The competition, which will feature 12 teams, will be held virtually via Zoom Feb. 5-6. 

Campbell Law has two teams in the competition. Team 1 is made up of third-year students Amber Younce and Grace Massarelli, who are coached by Zach Anstett ‘18 of Cranfill Sumner & Hartzog LLP. The team and their coach are the 2020 Regional Client Counseling Champions, who made it to the semi-finals in the first-ever virtual national competition in March 2020. In 2019, Campbell Law’s client counseling team consisting of Tatiana Terry (’19) and Katie Webb Miller (’19) won the Regional, National and World Championship titles.

Team 2 is made up of second-year students Miriam Sheppard and Tabitha Cooke, who are coached by Skylar Gallagher ‘19.

This year’s competition focuses on the area of entertainment and amateur sports. The ABA Client Counseling competition addresses fundamental skills necessary for all successful attorneys, namely the ability to interview, advise and support a client through their legal issues. Competitors conduct an initial interview with a person playing the role of the client and then address both the client’s legal and non-legal needs. Students are called on to explain various aspects of the attorney-client relationship, build rapport, determine client goals and consider applicable law and options that may be available to the client.

While conducting the interview with the client, competitors are being observed by three judges that will score the competitors at the end of the interview. 

After three preliminary rounds, the top six teams will move on to the semifinals. The top three teams will move on to the final round. The preliminary round will be held from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 5, and the semifinal will be held from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. and the final rounds will be held noon to 3:30 p.m. The regional winners will advance to the national competition set for March 18-20.

 As the host school, Campbell Law is in need of volunteer judges for the competition for the preliminary, semifinal and final rounds. If you are interested in being a judge, please click here to register. As a host school, Campbell Law is responsible for getting all the judges and clients for the competition — a minimum of 48 judges and 16 clients. Since Campbell Law has two student teams competing in the region the law school is hosting, Campbell Law professors are not allowed to judge the competition. The ABA also suggests that one of the three judges in each virtual “room” be a non-lawyer, meaning at least 16 non-lawyers are also needed to volunteer to judge. 

Judges are only allowed to judge one round (preliminary, semifinal final), but those who are available for more than one round should indicate their availability when signing up.  Questions? Contact Wallace Advocacy Fellow Callie Davis at cedavis@campbell.edu

The last time Campbell Law served as regional host for the ABA Client Counseling Competition was 2015, when then second-year Campbell Law students Mary Frances Dudley ‘16 and Sloan Smith ‘16 won.


Since its founding in 1976, Campbell Law has developed lawyers who possess moral conviction, social compassion, and professional competence, and who view the law as a calling to serve others. Among its accolades, the school has been recognized by the American Bar Association (ABA) as having the nation’s top Professionalism Program and by the American Academy of Trial Lawyers for having the nation’s best Trial Advocacy Program. Campbell Law boasts more than 4,200 alumni, who make their home in nearly all 50 states and beyond. In 2021, Campbell Law is celebrating 45 years of graduating legal leaders and a dozen years of being located in a state-of-the-art facility in the heart of North Carolina’s Capital City.