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Constitution Week

Speaker bios and supplemental resources

An Associate Professor of Business Ethics and Legal Studies at the University of Denver, Corey Ciocchetti is one of the University’s most popular and highest-rated professors. Corey joined DU after graduating with a law degree from Duke University School of Law, a Masters degree in Religious Studies and two Bachelors degrees in Finance and Economics—summa cum laude—from the University of Denver.

Corey is a talented speaker and teacher and has won multiple teaching and speaking awards including the Outstanding Professor of the Year Award and the Joel Goldman Award for most respected speaker on the CAMPUSPEAK roster. He currently teaches classes on business law and ethics in a department ranked by the Wall Street Journal and Business Week in the top ten nationwide for producing students with high ethical standards.

Corey also speaks to tens of thousands of individuals each year about “authentic success” and living an ethical life and is the author of the book Inspire Integrity: Chase An Authentic Life. He has spoken to diverse audiences in over 225 cities and 44 states over the past ten years. A Colorado native, Corey resides in Denver with his wife, Jillian and daughters Sophia and Sydney.

Chief Louis Dekmar's 42-year law enforcement career ranges from police officer and detective to division commander to Chief of Police for over 28 years. He has served as Chief of Police and Chief of Public Safety for the City of LaGrange since 1995. [Taken from IACP]

The Supremacy Clause, therefore, “elevates” the U.S. Constitution, federal statutes, federal regulations, and ratified treaties above the laws of the states. Read the Congressional Research Service report on the Supremacy Clause below.

Nicholas Creel is currently an Assistant Professor of Public Law at Georgia College. His research interests include religion and politics, international law, and constitutional law. His academic accomplishments include a recently completed PhD in political science from Texas Tech University, a JD from the University of Dayton, and an LLM in international and comparative law from St. Mary's University.

Amanda S. Petty is a native of Milledgeville, Georgia. She attended Georgia College & State University and graduated Summa Cum Laude in 1998. She then went on to attend Mercer University Walter F. George School of Law where she was a Woodruff Scholar. Amanda graduated from Mercer in 2005 with her Juris Doctor degree and was admitted to practice law that same year. She practiced law in Milledgeville for eleven years and focused on juvenile and family law cases. In 2016, Amanda was elected as a Superior Court Judge for the Ocmulgee Judicial Circuit, and she officially began her term January 1, 2017. 

Lori A. Ringhand Lori A. Ringhand is a Professor of Law at the University of Georgia College of Law. She has been a been a member of the Georgia Law faculty since 2008, and was named J. Alton Hosch Professor of Law in 2012. She is a nationally known Supreme Court scholar and the author of the book Supreme Court Confirmation Hearings and Constitutional Change (with Paul M. Collins) published by Cambridge University Press.

Matt Roessing is a Lecturer in Legal Studies at UGA’s Terry College of Business, where he teaches the legal aspects of business, real estate, and international trade. Matt taught business law at Georgia College from 2012-2017 and won several teaching awards, including the business school’s Students’ Choice Award and the university-wide Excellence in Teaching Award. He is a member of the Academy of Legal Studies in Business and recent winner of its annual Master Teacher Competition. While at Georgia College, Matt started the U.S. Supreme Court Review and helped expand Constitution Day into a week of cross-disciplinary events. Matt previously worked in the Washington, D.C. office of Arnold & Porter LLP and now runs his own law firm in Milledgeville, where he represents local business owners and serves on the board of the Chamber of Commerce. A self-professed “SCOTUS nerd,” Matt follows the Court and his discussions of its decisions have been featured on Georgia Public Broadcasting, Macon’s LawCall, and Georgia College’s WRGC.

Fred Smith Jr. is associate professor at Emory University School of Law. He is a scholar of the federal judiciary and constitutional law. Smith clerked for Judge Myron Thompson of the middle district of Alabama; Judge Barrington D. Parker, Jr. of the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit; and Justice Sonia Sotomayor of the United States Supreme Court. Prior to teaching, he also worked as a fellow for a litigation boutique, Bondurant, Mixson & Elmore LLP in Atlanta.

Event details

The Heartbeat Bill

Noon in Atkinson 202: The Heartbeat Bill, Roe v. Wade & Georgia's Booming Film Industry.


5 pm in the Magnolia Ballroom: Corey Ciocchetti (keynote speaker) & Trax on the Trail Concert: Jaunty Tunes and Delightful Ditties from American Presidential Campaigns, 1840-1964 


Lunch Discussion

Noon in HSB 211 

Whose DNA Is It? From Genealogy Research to Catching a Killer: The 4th Amendment and Law Enforcement, Obtaining DNA Information Online 

5 pm in the Magnolia Ballroom

Usery Forum on Leadership featureing Louis M. Dekmar, LaGrange Chief of Police 



Times Talk: Marijuana & The Supremacy Clause

Hank Edmondson, Carl Vinson Chair of Political Science and Public Administration 

12 - 1 p.m., Pat Peterson Room, Ina Dillard Russell Library 

Supreme Court Review Panel 

Lori Ringhand, Univ. of GA School of Law

Nicholas Creel, Georgia College 

Matt Roessing, UGA's Terry College of Business

Mandy Petty, Superior Court Judge, Ocmulgee Judicial Circuit

Fred Smith, Emory University School of Law 

6 p.m., A&S Auditorium 


Confederate Memorials & the First Amendment 

Noon in the Governor's Mansion

The Unafraid - A Documentary on Three DACA Students in Georgia, followed by a Q&A on Immigration 

6 pm in the A&S Auditorium 




Constitution Week interview