RWU Law acquires The Journal of Maritime Law and Commerce

Rhode Island’s Only Law School Acquires America’s Leading Maritime Law Periodical, a boon for the profession and students

BRISTOL, RI, August 19, 2021 – Roger Williams University Law School is the new home of the Maritime and Commercial Law Journal (JMLC), the leading maritime law periodical in the United States.

Founded in 1969, the JMLC is a scholarly and practice-oriented periodical “devoted to all aspects of admiralty and maritime law, including the law of the sea”. Since its inception 50 years ago, courts and arbitrators – including the United States Supreme Court and foreign courts – have cited the Newspaper hundreds of times.

“RWU Law is a perfect fit for this premier publication,” said Dean Gregory W. Bowman. “We are a nationally recognized maritime law school that provides a solid education in this field for the next generation of lawyers and leaders through our excellent faculty, the Marine Affairs Institute (MAI), and our partnerships with the University of Rhode Island and Rhode Island Sea. To agree.”

The Faculty of Law and students of RWU will administer, edit and publish the Newspaper both online ( and editions printed twice a year, roughly coinciding with the fall and spring university semesters.

“This is a wonderful opportunity for the School of Law and the Marine Affairs Institute,” said Julia Wyman, MAI & Rhode Island Sea Grant Legal Program Director at RWU Law. “The Newspaper is an internationally respected, professionally published journal that maritime experts rely on for important analysis of current issues.

In its new headquarters, the JMLC will remain a peer-reviewed publication supported by external funding. It came to Roger Williams as a generous gift from the family of George Jay Joseph, the Washington, DC lawyer who founded the publication. Two RWU Law alumni, Alison Laboissonniere Boyd ’06 and Bradford Boyd ’08 – founders of ANOVA Marine Insurance Services LLC, a major marine insurance company headquartered in Pembroke Pines, Florida – have generously agreed to underwrite the Newspaper‘s production for five years.

“We were delighted to be able to help RWU Law add an extra element to its already solid reputation in maritime law,” said Bradford Boyd. “As a student, I chose Roger Williams because of his opportunities in maritime law, and my career benefited greatly from that decision. Alison and I felt that a journal focused on the business side of the maritime law would be an excellent complement to the already strong maritime and coastal law opportunities at RWU Law.

RWU law professors Jonathan Gutoff and Justin Kishbaugh will serve with Wyman as editors. Second and third year law students will act as student writers. “I look forward to working with Julia and Justin to maintain the integrity of the Newspaper while offering our students the opportunity to help produce the Newspaper“, Gutoff said. “We plan to keep George Jay Joseph’s vision for the Newspaper alive and strong.

Kishbaugh remarked, “The JMLC is essentially a professional journal, with lawyers working in the field actively involved in the editorial process. This dynamic will offer students a significantly different experience from that of writing a traditional law journal.

“Our intention is for students to be an active part of the editorial team,” Wyman explained. “This means that they will not only work with us internally, but also with professionals on the ground. Essentially, the JMLC will fulfill a dual mission: to provide a vital resource to keep maritime professionals abreast of important issues in the field while enabling our students to work alongside these professionals in practice. »

Many of these maritime professionals are, in fact, alumni who came to RWU Law specifically for its nationally recognized focus on maritime law.

For example, Marc Fialkoff ’14 is a national expert in nuclear security and transportation law who works with Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee, currently on secondment to the US State Department. A few years ago he published an article in the JMLC on the intersection of maritime law and nuclear law with floating nuclear power plants. He is guest editor for the first edition of Roger Williams Law.

“The Newspaper is an invaluable forum for important discussions that showcase the interdisciplinary nature of maritime law,” he said. “And Roger Williams really is a perfect fit, being home of the MAI, the mock Admiralty Tribunal team, the joint JD/Maritime Affairs degree and so many other outlets. To be honest, I’m a little jealous that I’m not studying there today! This truly showcases and elevates the outstanding maritime law programs of Roger Williams.

Casey O’Brien ’15, associate attorney at Hill Rivkins LLP in New York and secretary of the Maritime Law Association’s Arbitration and ADR Committee, is also guest editor of the inaugural Roger Williams edition of the Newspaper.

“It’s a very exciting development,” she said. “The Newspaper is a well-known publication and an excellent resource for practitioners. The professionals who contribute articles are household names in the field. I’m really excited for law school; it’s a real feather in their cap.

O’Brien is also delighted to have students involved in the production of the publication.

“It’s a great opportunity to learn and understand, to be exposed to the issues the industry is currently facing and how they could evolve over the next few years,” she said. “Add in the practical editing skills the students will learn – not to mention doing those industry introductions with the writers – and it’s just a fantastic opportunity. Well done again, Roger Williams!

Gutoff said the JMLC offers a unique blend of scientific depth and practical know-how that RWU’s law team is committed to maintaining.

“Items in the Newspaper are held to a very high standard of writing and research, but they also tend to focus on current practical issues facing the maritime industry and the maritime bar,” he said. “There is far less theoretical work in the JMLC than in the average student-edited academic journal. Sometimes there are more technical explorations – say, a five paragraph piece on how to do X in a particular court – and sometimes they can be historical when history is essential to resolving a given legal issue.

“As someone who has been interested in maritime law throughout my career and who has published work in the Newspaper – one of my JMLC pieces was cited by the United States Supreme Court – this is particularly exciting for me,” Gutoff added.

Kishbaugh noted, “Having this prestigious journal in-house will allow our student writers to develop their writing and editorial skills in the international arena and gain invaluable professional experience even before they graduate from RWU Law, which is a such a great opportunity that we are so excited to provide to our students.

About the RWU law: The only law school in Rhode Island, Roger Williams University School of Law provides students with a rigorous, practical, and affordable legal education in a supportive environment. RWU Law has been a leader in providing experiential and pro bono educational opportunities to its students, and has a legacy of outstanding scholarship, accomplished alumni, and deep engagement with the bench and the bar.

About RWU: With campuses on the Bristol Coast and in the heart of Providence, RI, Roger Williams University is a forward-thinking private university committed to strengthening society through engaged teaching and learning. At RWU, small class sizes, direct access to faculty, and a guaranteed opportunity for real-life projects ensure that its nearly 4,000 undergraduate students – along with hundreds of law students, graduate students and adult learners – graduate with the ability to think critically as well as the practical skills that today’s employers demand. Roger Williams is leading the way in American higher education, tackling the most pressing issues facing students and families — rising costs, rising debt, and job readiness.