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Creighton law professor receives a University research award

Nov 10, 2022
2 min Read
Rachel Stanko
R. Collin Mangrum speaking in court room setting.

R. Collin Mangrum, JD, professor of law, was honored during the spring University Research Week with the Non-Health Sciences University Research Award in recognition of his extensive record of nationally and internationally recognized research and publications.

“I’ve been teaching for 42 years, and I care about my students, I care about the graduates. [The award] validates the efforts I’ve made over the years to improve justice in Nebraska and Utah,” says Mangrum, the A.A. and Ethel Yossem Endowed Chair in Legal Ethics.

Over his four-decade teaching career at Creighton, Mangrum has generated an arc of scholarly research focused on separation of church and state, religious freedom and evidence — becoming the interpretive authority and regular source for practitioners with his annual treatises on Nebraska Evidence and Utah Evidence (in partnership with Chief Judge Dee Benson).

Mangrum has held visiting professorships on law faculties at universities in Israel and Scotland and lectured at symposia throughout the country, but he consistently brings his research back to the benefit of Creighton law students. In 2021, he and then-senior student Chris McMahon had a hand in passing a bill that would render eyewitness pretrial identification or nonidentification of a person admissible in court. Mangrum, a longtime advocate for the changes addressed in the bill, and McMahon, who was writing a Creighton Law Review paper on hearsay exceptions, testified before the state legislature. On June 14, Gov. Pete Ricketts signed the bill.

“I’ve said that justice is best secured by an interaction of academics, judges and practitioners,” says Mangrum.

“His award-winning scholarship is the epitome of ‘research in action,’” wrote Michael Kelly, JD, LLM, professor and Senator Allen A. Sekt Endowed Chair in Law, in his nomination of Mangrum for the research award. “Such blending by an academic of commitment to their research with an equally total commitment to their students is exactly the dynamic that Creighton University, as a student- centered enterprise, should celebrate.”