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Event Information 280223

Monday, February 17

9:00 a.m.-4:30 p.m.


5:00-6:00 p.m.


6:00-6:15 p.m.

Presentation of Shapero Cup Award and Best Oral Advocate Award

6:15-7:30 p.m.



*Timing subject to change based on the number of teams.

**Additional Ticket Required. View "Symposium" Tab for more information.


Join ABI and the committee of The Walter Shapero Bankruptcy Symposium for an educational session following the Shapero Cup Moot Court Competition.  The one-hour symposium will feature speakers below in discussion about the same fact pattern the teams argued earlier in the day. Stay for the awards ceremony and a cocktail reception to congratulate the eight participating teams and network with colleagues.

This event is a great opportunity to connect with area insolvency professionals, engage with expert speakers, and honor our colleague, mentor and friend, Judge Shapero.

About Judge Shapero

Hon. Walter Shapero was appointed as a U.S. Bankruptcy Judge for the Eastern District of Michigan in 1988. After serving the full term of his appointment, he continued to serve as a bankruptcy judge in recall status until he retired in September 2016, and always carried full case load. Throughout his judicial career, Judge Shapero was known for his scholarly, intellectually curious and thorough approach to legal issues, and for his gracious, humble and civil approach to all of the lawyers and parties who appeared in his courtroom.

Judge Shapero received his A.B. in 1951 from the University of Michigan and his LL.B. in 1954 from the University of Virginia Law School, where he served as an editorial board member of the Virginia Law Review. He was admitted to the State Bar of Michigan in 1955. In 1954, Judge Shapero clerked for a Michigan Supreme Court Justice before entering in private practice in 1956 with Shapero, Shapero and Cohn, which later became Bromberg, Robinson, Shapero, Cohn and Burgoyne. He concentrated his law practice in real estate and served as an adjunct law professor at both the University of Detroit Law School and Wayne State University Law School.

The Honorable Walter Shapero Bankruptcy Symposium, named in Judge Shapero’s honor for his many years of outstanding service as a bankruptcy judge, is a nonprofit entity dedicated to the advancement of knowledge and understanding of bankruptcy law. Established in 2004, the symposium annually puts on scholarly presentations regarding bankruptcy law.

Featured Speakers

Hon. Joel Applebaum

U.S. Bankruptcy Court, (E.D. Mich.); Flint

Lisa Gretchko

Howard & Howard Attorneys PLLC

Stephen Gross

McDonald Hopkins LLC


U.S. District Courthouse
231 W. Lafayette Boulevard
Room 115
Detroit, Mich.


Monday, February 17, 2020
5:00 p.m. Symposium*
6:00 p.m. Presentation of Shapero Cup Award and Best Oral Advocate Award
6:15 p.m. Reception


Tickets: $25 each*

*This program is eligible for 1 general credit. CLE will be applied for in the following states: IL, IN, OH, and TN..

Competition Information


The Shapero Cup Regional Moot Court Competition (the “Regional”) is scheduled for Monday, February 17, 2020, at the U.S. Bankruptcy Courthouse in Detroit.


The Regional features law schools from the Sixth Circuit and is designed in part to serve as formal practice for law school teams considering competing in the Duberstein Moot Court Competition at St. John’s University School of Law in New York City in February/March (the “Duberstein Competition”). The Regional is not an elimination round for the Duberstein Competition.


For the Regional competition, teams do not need to submit briefs. Each team will argue in the preliminary round, with one argument for the petitioner and one argument for the respondent. The two teams with the highest average score in the preliminary round will advance to the final round.


Awards will be presented at the Regional, which will include a trophy for first-place team and top oralist. Prominent bankruptcy practitioners and judges will judge rounds, and teams will receive constructive input from the judges following each round.


To participate, please review the Official Rules and return the completed applicationto Erin Finnegan at

Planning Committee


Michael E. Baum

Schafer and Weiner, PLLC

Leslie K. Berg

Office of the U.S. Trustee

William C. Blasses

Kerr, Russell and Weber, PLC

Ian Bolton

Bolton Legal Group

Kelley L. Callard

Office of the U.S. Trustee

Melissa A. Caouette

Office of Carl L. Bekofske, Chapter 13 Trustee

Sean M. Cowley

Office of the U.S. Trustee

Ethan Dunn

Maxwell Dunn, PLC

Lisa Sommers Gretchko

Howard & Howard Attorneys PLLC

Paul R. Hage

Jaffe Raitt Heuer & Weiss


Wallace M. Handler

Sullivan, Ward, Asher & Patton, PC

Kimberly A. Kramer

Kimberly Kramer, P.L.C.

David A. Lerner

Plunkett Cooney, PC

Lisa K. Mullen

Office of the Chapter 13 Standing Trustee

Charissa Potts

Freedom Law, PC

Crystal L. Price-Buckley

Trott Law, P.C.

Craig S. Schoenherr Sr.

O'Reilly Rancilio P.C.

Hon. Walter Shapero (ret.)


Hon. Phillip J. Shefferly

Chief Judge, U.S. Bankruptcy Court (E.D. Mich.)




Any accredited law school located in the Sixth Circuit (Michigan, Kentucky, Ohio and Tennessee) may enter one or two teams to participate in the Regional. The event is designed to serve as formal practice for the Sixth Circuit law schools that will be competing in the 2020 Duberstein Competition.




Each participating school may enter one or two teams, composed of two or three students each. All team members must be enrolled at the school that they represent at the time of the competition.



There shall be no substitution of team members after the Application Form is submitted, except upon written permission from the Regional.



There shall be no brief submissions for the Regional. Competitors are scored on oral advocacy only.




A. IN GENERAL. Each team will argue in the preliminary round, with one argument for the petitioner and one argument for the respondent. The two teams with the highest scores in the preliminary round will advance to the final round.

B. PAIRINGS OF TEAMS. Pairings in the preliminary round will be chosen at random.

C. TIME AND PLACE. Oral arguments will take place on February 17, 2020, at the U.S. Bankruptcy Courthouse in Detroit.



The winner of the 2020 Shapero Cup will be announced at the Awards Reception.



The scores for each round will be based on oral argument.



Each team is limited to thirty (30) minutes of oral argument. Two (2) team members will argue in each round. The division of the thirty (30) minutes allotted for oral argument may be made at the discretion of the team, but no team member shall be apportioned less than ten (10) minutes for oral argument. The petitioner may reserve up to three (3) minutes of rebuttal time prior to the commencement of the argument. Teams that reserve rebuttal time shall notify the judges and/or bailiff on how to deduct rebuttal time. Time reserved for rebuttal shall be counted as part of the thirty (30) minutes allotted for oral argument. Judges reserve the right to allow for additional time at their discretion.



The competitor with the highest mean (average) score for oral argument will be chosen as the best oral advocate. The winner of the Best Oral Advocate Award will be announced at the Awards Reception.




No team member, coach or faculty adviser of a team participating in the Regional may attend an argument of any other team during the preliminary round. The number of attendees to each argument is limited to the competing team members, their families, two coaches or two faculty advisors. All participants may attend, and are strongly encouraged to attend, the final round.



There shall be no communication in any form from any member of the audience, including other team members sitting in the audience, once a round has begun.



The Regional may assess such penalties, including disqualification, as it deems reasonable and appropriate for failure to comply with the foregoing rules. Any decisions, penalties or other actions taken by the Regional will be final and binding on all participants. The Regional reserves the right to make and implement any further rules and procedures deemed advisable for the conduct of this event.



Erin Finnegan, CMP
American Bankruptcy Institute

Competing Schools


Bodman PLCOSUCincinnatiDetroit Mercy LawMUMichiganWayne UniversityBodman PLC


Patron Sponsors

CBA Detroit Howard & Howard Jaffe Raitt Heuer & Weiss Stevenson & Bullock PLC

Benefactor Sponsor

Dickinson Wright PLLC

Host Sponsors

Bodman, PLCButler Rowse-Oberle  PLLCFreedom Law, PC Kerr, Russell and Weber, PLC Lieberman Gies and Cohen PLLC PLUNKETT COONEY, PCWolfson Bolton PLLC

Supporting Sponsors

Honigman LLP
Hon. Steven Rhodes (Ret.)
Kilpatrick & Associates, P.C.
McDonald Hopkins
Miller Canfield
Plante Moran
Strobl Sharp PLLC
Varnum LLP
Warner Norcross & Judd LLP


Karen E. Evangelista, PC
Pepper Hamilton LLP
Schafer & Weiner, PLLC
Silverman & Morris, P.L.L.C.
Trott Law, P.C.


For sponsorship opportunities, please download the form and return to Erin Finnegan.