Howard Law Student Wins ‘Best Oral Advocate’ in National Moot Court Competition

WASHINGTON — Howard University School of Law 2L student, Emony Robertson, has won Best Oral Advocate at the American College of Bankruptcy (ACB) Fourth Circuit Moot Court Competition.

The ACB competition was held virtually Feb. 15 via Zoom with law schools from the Fourth and D.C. Circuits participating. The competition is designed, in part, to serve as a formal practice for law school teams competing in the Duberstein Moot Court Competition, hosted by St. John’s University School of Law in New York City.

"I am beyond thrilled to be this year's recipient of Best Oral Advocate for the American College of Bankruptcy's Fourth Circuit and DC Circuit's Moot Court Competition,” Robertson said. “I am thankful to my partner and our team's mentors who have spent tireless effort preparing us. The coaches, captains, alumni, and mentors played a critical role in our preparation for the regional competition; we would not have made it this far without them. Given that I aspire to become a leading bankruptcy litigator, being recognized as Best Oral Advocate is a personal milestone in my quest to ensure equity amongst parties during periods of financial vulnerability. This award highlights the guidance and molding of social engineers through oral advocacy at Howard University School of Law. As a member of the Charles Hamilton Houston National Moot Court Team, it is my duty to honor the legacy of the team's namesake and exude the excellent legal training received at HUSL. It is my hope that this award will add to the prestigious legacy of Howard University School of Law throughout the legal community, moot court competitions, and the bankruptcy practice area."

This year, six teams participated in the competition, drawn from five schools. Campbell Law School won the overall competition, for the third year in a row. This competition is a feeder competition for the Duberstein Bankruptcy Moot Court Competition. The education committee of the 4th Circuit chapter of the American College of Bankruptcy thought it was important to organize the competition because the teams that have won the big competition have, in recent years, also participated in a feeder competition. 

Matthew Bruckner, associate professor of law at Howard Law who teaches Bankruptcy,  acts as an informal advisor and coach to the Charles Hamilton Houston National Moot Court Team.

"Emony has worked diligently to prepare for this weekend's competition and her ‘Best Oral Advocate’ award shows that her preparation is paying off,” Bruckner said. “I look forward to seeing Emony and her teammate, Jordan Greer, compete for the title at the 29th Annual Duberstein Bankruptcy Moot Court Competition."

In its two years of competing in both competitions, this is Howard Law’s first prize. For Robertson’s win, she was awarded with a plaque. She will compete virtually for a possible monetary prize at the 29th Annual Duberstein Moot Court Competition, set for Feb. 27 – March 1, 2021. The Duberstein Bankruptcy Moot Court Competition is widely recognized as one of the nation’s preeminent moot court competitions. The competition promotes and recognizes the finest oral and written advocacy on significant issues in bankruptcy practice. 

“Howard has risen to the challenge and become a fierce competitor at Duberstein, one of the nation's preeminent moot court competitions,” Bruckner said.

About Howard University

Founded in 1867, Howard University is a private, research university that is comprised of 13 schools and colleges. Students pursue more than 140 programs of study leading to undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees. The University operates with a commitment to Excellence in Truth and Service and has produced one Schwarzman Scholar, three Marshall Scholars, four Rhodes Scholars, 11 Truman Scholars, 25 Pickering Fellows and more than 165 Fulbright recipients. Howard also produces more on-campus African-American Ph.D. recipients than any other university in the United States. For more information on Howard University, visit