Penn Law School, Philadelphia: March 27, 2013

“Law, Ethics and Justice: Pregnancy, Fertility, and Parenting Rights after Roe v. Wade:
A Fresh Look”
Penn Law School, Levy Conference Center
March 27, 2013 | 1:30-6:30 pm

[ Download the PDF Poster for this Event ]

Forty years after the Supreme Court’s decision in Roe v. Wade (1973) legalized  abortion, Americans face a new landscape of reproductive practices, aspirations and challenges.  What does the contemporary array of choices and mandates say about our values?  Expert panelists will offer fresh takes on pregnancy, fertility and access to parenting services from a variety of perspectives, including law, medicine, bioethics, and social science.  The event is non-partisan and open to the public.  Identification may be requested at the door.  Published written materials on the subject-matter of the symposium will be made available to participants.

Sponsors: Penn Law Dean’s Office, Penn Health Law Group, Health Law and Policy Project, Reproductive Rights Law Project, Penn Law for Reproductive Justice
Event date: March 27, 2013
Time: 1:30pm to 6:30pm, reception to follow
Location:  Levy Conference Center, University of Pennsylvania Law School, 3501 Sansom Street (34th and Chestnut), Philadelphia PA 19104
Contact Person: Professor Anita L. Allen, Henry R. Silverman Professor of Law and Professor of Philosophy,
PACLE Credit Pending:  3 hours ethics and 1.5 hours substantive.

Program & Speaker Biographies

1:30-1:45 Welcome on Behalf of Law School and Co-Sponsors:
Nicolle Strand (Penn Law, JD/MBE ’13)
Introduction of Conference Theme: “Fresh Takes: Law, Ethics and Justice After Roe v Wade

  • Prof. Anita L. Allen JD, Ph.D
  • Henry R. Silverman Professor of Law and Professor of Philosophy, University of Pennsylvania Law School, Commissioner, Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues

 1:45-3:15 Panel 1:   Reproductive Health Services in the Shadow of Roe
“Abortion to Save the Life of the Mother: Sister Margaret McBride and the St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center, Phoenix—A Case Study”

  • Adjunct Instructor Prof. Paul Castellitto MA, JD, University of Pennsylvania College of Liberal and Professional Studies

“Easy Pregnancies, Hard Pregnancies and Why”

  • Prof. William McCool RN, PhD, CNM, Helen O Dickens Center for Reproductive Health, University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing, Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania

“The Challenges of Fertility and Infertility”

  • Prof. Samantha Butts MD, MSCE, Hospital of the University f Pennsylvania, Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania

3:20-3:4:50Panel 2: Rights and Responsibility after Roe v Wade    

“Civil Liberties and the Right to Privacy”

  • Prof. Heather Butts MPH, MA, JD, Columbia School of Public Health, St. John’s University School of Law

“Recent Anti-Abortion Legislation”

  • Ms. Sue Frietsche JD, Senior Staff Attorney, The Women’s Law Project

“Race and Reproduction: an Evolving Landscape”

  • Prof. Dorothy Roberts JD, Raymond Pace and Sadie Tanner Mossell Alexander Professor of Civil Rights, Penn Integrates Knowledge Professor, University of Pennsylvania Law School and Department of Sociology

“Motherhood at Work: the Affordable Care Act’s Mandate for Nursing Mothers”

  • Ms. Kayte Spector-Bagdady JD, M. Bioethics, Associate Director, Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues

5:00-6:30Panel 3: Expanded Access to Reproductive Services

“Everything New Is Old: Law, Kinship and Assisted Reproduction”

  • Prof. Kimberly Mutcherson JD, Rutgers University School of Law- Camden


“The Non-Procreative Presumption: LGBTQI Persons in Medical History and Contemporary Clinical Practice”

  • Prof. Lance Wahlert Ph.D, University of Pennsylvania, Department of Biomedical Ethics and Health Policy,, Co-Director, Project on Bioethics, Sexuality and Gender Identity

“Trans-fertility and the Questions We Shouldn’t Ask.”

  • Prof. Autumn Feister Ph.D, University of Pennsylvania, Department of Biomedical Ethics and Health Policy, Co-Director, Project on Bioethics, Sexuality and Gender Identity

Conclusion and Thank-yous

  • Jonelle Saunders (Penn, JD/MBE ’14)

6:35 Reception


Speaker Biographies

  • Anita L. Allen, Henry R. Silverman Professor of Law and Professor of Philosophy, is leading   expert on privacy law, bioethics, and contemporary values, and is recognized for her scholarship about legal philosophy, women’s rights, and race relations. In 2010 she was appointed by President Obama to the Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues. Allen was Chair of Board of Planned Parenthood of Metropolitan Washington in the 1990s and has served on the board of the Women’s Medical Fund in Philadelphia and the Family Planning Council.  She was on the steps of the Supreme Court providing commentary for CBS when the Court announced its decision in Planned Parenthood v. Casey, reaffirming Roe v Wade.  Allen’s books include Unpopular Privacy: What Must We Hide (Oxford, 2011); Everyday Ethics: Opinion-Writing about the Things that Matter Most (Academic Readers/Cognella, 2010); Privacy Law and Society (Thomson/West, 2011); The New Ethics: A Guided Tour of the 21st Century Moral Landscape (Miramax/Hyperion, 2004); Why Privacy Isn’t Everything: Feminist Reflections on Personal Accountability (Rowman and Littlefield, 2003); and Uneasy Access: Privacy for Women in a Free Society (Rowman and Littlefield, 1988). She co-edited (with Milton Regan) Debating Democracy’s Discontent (Oxford, 1998). Allen, who has written more than a 100 scholarly articles, has also contributed to popular magazines and blogs, and has frequently appeared on nationally broadcast television and radio programs. Allen has served on numerous editorial and advisory boards, and on the boards of a number of local and national non-profits and professional associations including the Hastings Center, EPIC and the Bazelon Center.
  • Heather Butts is the founder of L.E.A.R.N for Life Consulting, L.L.C. Additionally, she is an adjunct professor at Columbia University School of Public Health and St. John’s University School of Law.  Ms. Butts served for over seven years as a regulatory specialist at Columbia University’s Medical Center (CUMC) Institutional Review Board (IRB). She was involved in updating CUMC investigators and IRB members on regulatory changes, as well as training and education efforts of the Columbia University research community. She has authored several publications in the area of health ethics and regulations. Prior to her work at Columbia, Ms. Butts was a Senior Associate at PricewaterhouseCoopers, LLP in New York where she performed compliance risk assessments, outreach and education. Ms. Butts received her B.A. from Princeton University. She was a history major, concentrating in American Studies, African Studies and African-American Studies. She received her J.D. from St. John’s University School of Law, her M.P.H from Harvard University School of Public Health and her M.A. in Education from Columbia University’s Teachers College. While at Teachers College, Ms. Butts specialized in college preparation for students and adolescent psychology and now provides college counseling consultation for students and their parents.
  • Samantha Butts is Assistant Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, in the Department of  Obstetrics and Gynecology.  Dr. Butts earned her BA in History and Science cum laude from Harvard University and her MD from Harvard Medical School.  She also holds an MSCE from Penn.  Dr. Butts’ expertise includes environmental reproductive toxicology; reproductive health disparities; reproductive senescence; in utero programming of ovarian function and somatic growth; rDescription of Clinical Expertise eproductive surgery, and in vitro fertilization.  Recent co-authored papers include  Race, socioeconomic status and response to methotrexate treatment of ectopic pregnancy in an urban population. Fertil Steril 94(7):2789-92, December 2010; Correlation of telomere length and telomerase activity with primary ovarian insufficiency. J Clin Endocrinol Metabol 94(12):4835-34, December 2009; and Racial and ethnic differences in reproductive potential across the lifecourse. Fertil Steril 93(3):681-690, February 2010.
  • Paul Vincent Castellitto is an Adjunct Lecturer teaching Ethics at the University of Pennsylvania School of Liberal and Professional Studies. He holds a BA (Sociology and Philosophy) degree from New College, an MA in Philosophy from the University of Pittsburgh, and a JD from the University of California at Los Angeles.  He is a member of the California, Washington D.C., and Pennsylvania bars.   Mr. Castellitto clerked on the Third Circuit Court of Appeals for the Honorable Joseph Weis before commencing a career as an attorney in private practice for twenty years specializing in corporate litigation and white collar criminal defense.
  • Autumn Fiester, PhD, is the Director of Education in the Department of Medical Ethics and Health Policy at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. She is the Director of the Penn Clinical Ethics Mediation Program, which promotes clinical ethics mediation as a conflict-resolution method in both formal clinical ethics consultations and ethics conflicts at the bedside. Dr. Fiester is a consultant and mediator for the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania Ethics Service. She has been a member of the American Society for Bioethics and Humanities task force on clinical ethics consultation professionalization (Clinical Ethics Consultation Affairs Standing Committee). She is also a member of the Advisory Board of the Singapore CENTRES Project (Clinical Ethics Network, Training, Research and Support Initiative) aimed at developing the capacity of clinical ethics committees in Singapore. She is a member of GABEX: Global Alliance of Biomedical Ethics Centers sponsored by the University of Tokyo, designed to create a collaborative, international network of bioethics centers of excellence. She was also a contributing author of the EU-sponsored CHIMBRIDS project (Chimeras and Hybrids in Comparative European and International Research), which produced recommendations to the EU federation about the ethical issues surrounding chimera and hybrid research (Springer 2009). She is also the Co-Director (with Lance Wahlert) of the newly launched Bioethics, Sexuality, and Gender Identity Project that seeks to demarcate a sub-field within bioethics that focuses on the intersection of LGBTQI issues and medical ethics (
  • Susan Frietsche is a senior staff attorney at the Women’s Law Project, a nonprofit women’s legal advocacy organization founded in 1974 whose mission is to end sex discrimination and improve the lives of women and girls. After ten years in the Women’s Law Project’s Philadelphia office, Ms. Frietsche relocated to Pittsburgh in 2002 and opened a downtown office to serve the women and girls of western Pennsylvania. The Women’s Law Project engages in high-impact litigation, legislative advocacy, public education, and individual representation on behalf of low-income women, domestic violence survivors, reproductive health care providers and their patients, teens, lesbian and gay parents, incarcerated women, and pregnant and parenting women. In addition to her work at the Women’s Law Project, Ms. Frietsche is an adjunct at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law where she teaches a course entitled Reproduction, Sexuality and the Law. She also taught a seminar on sex discrimination at the University of Pennsylvania Law School. Ms. Frietsche is the co-author of “Preserving the Core of Roe:  Reflections on Planned Parenthood v. Casey,” published in the Yale Journal of Law & Feminism. She is a graduate of Temple Law School and Bryn Mawr College.
  • William McCool is a Professor in the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing.  He graduated from midwifery school in 1984, practices fullscope midwifery care through his affiliation with the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania (HUP), and is the first midwife to have practiced there, at the Helen O. Dickens Center for Women’s Health. Dr. McCool teaches on the undergraduate and graduate levels including the final integrative clinical course to midwifery students. The graduate level course on professional issues in the women’s health care field emphasizes political involvement and professional identity for midwives and women’s health care nurse practitioners. Dr. McCool’s undergraduate courses include the popular “Culture of Birth” offering and the new “Politics of Women’s Health Care” course, co-taught with Dawn Durain, CNM, a member of the Women’s Health Care Studies faculty. Dr. McCool’s research asks why some pregnant women experience intense, but uncomplicated births, while others suffer from a variety of complications and less desirable outcomes.  His work explores this question through the examination of  biobehavioral factors that influence women’s labor and delivery experiences. Currently, he is investigating whether a pregnant woman’s level of stress and anxiety is related to the outcome of her labor and delivery experience. Dr. McCool has received research funding from the National Institutes of Health and is a member of the Division of Research of the American College of Nurse-Midwives (ACNM). Along with Heather Bradford, CNM (SON ’01), he is a 2002 recipient of the W. Newton Long Fund Committee award from the ACNM Foundation for promotion of nurse-midwifery research. Dr. McCool is currently on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Midwifery and Women’s Health. He has received a number of honors throughout his career related to his practice and scholarly work.
  • Kimberly Mutcherson teaches courses on bioethics, torts, family law, South African constitutional law, and health law policy, specifically the global HIV/AIDS epidemic. Her scholarly work focuses on issues at the intersection of health law, bioethics, and family law with a particular interest in assisted reproduction. Her writing has appeared in the Cornell Journal of Law and Public Policy, Harvard Journal of Law & Gender (on-line), Columbia Journal of Gender and Law, Nevada Law Journal, Minnesota Law Review Headnotes, and Yale Journal of Law and Feminism. Professor Mutcherson has spoken nationally on topics related to human subject research, reproductive technologies, reproductive justice, and health law. Prior to joining the Rutgers faculty in 2002, she served as a Kirkland & Ellis Fellow at the HIV Law Project (HLP), where she continued to work as a staff attorney when her fellowship year ended. At HLP, she focused on impact litigation and policy work for underrepresented populations including women, low-income gay, lesbian and transgender individuals, and injection drug users. After leaving HLP, Professor Mutcherson was an acting assistant professor of lawyering at the New York University School of Law, where she taught legal research, writing, and other legal skills to first-year law students.
  • Dorothy Roberts, an acclaimed scholar of race, gender and the law, joined the University of Pennsylvania as its 14th Penn Integrates Knowledge Professor with a joint appointment in the Department of Sociology and the Law School where she also holds the inaugural Raymond Pace and Sadie Tanner Mosell Alexander chair.  Her pathbreaking work in law and public policy focuses on urgent contemporary issues in health, social justice, and bioethics, especially as they impact the lives of women, children and African-Americans. Her major books include Fatal Invention: How Science, Politics, and Big Business Re-create Race in the Twenty-first Century (New Press, 2011); Shattered Bonds: The Color of Child Welfare (Basic Books, 2002), and Killing the Black Body: Race, Reproduction, and the Meaning of Liberty (Pantheon, 1997). She is the author of more than 80 scholarly articles and book chapters, as well as a co-editor of six books on such topics as constitutional law and women and the law.
  • Jonelle Saunders is a 2L student at Penn Law School, graduating in 2014 with a JD and a Masters in Bioethics. Before starting law school she completed a Masters in Healthcare Policy and Management from Carnegie Mellon University.     She has served as a research assistant for Anita L. Allen and  is currently a Teaching Assistant for an innovative new course offered through the Department of Biomedical Ethics and Health Policy, “Lying Cheating, Stealing and Killing,” designed by Zeke Emmanuel.
  • Nicolle Strand is a 3L student at Penn Law School graduating in 2013, with a JD and a masters in Bioethics. Ms. Starnd is a graduate of  Wellesley College. At Penn she is an Associate Editor of the Journal of Constitutional Law and Co-Director of the Reproductive Rights Law Project.  She has interned with the Food and Drug Administration, Office of Legal Counsel, the Legal Aid Society of  New York, Health Unit and the Framingham Heart Study. After graduation she will join the staff of the Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues.
  • Kayte Spector-Bagdady is Associate Director at the Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues and was a lead staff investigator into the PHS experiments in Guatemala for the Commission’s report, Ethically Impossible: STD Research in Guatemala from 1946 to 1948. She joined the Commission staff in 2010 after working as an associate at Hunton & Williams, where she advised drug and device companies on federal and FDA compliance issues and worked pro bono for an international children’s health NGO. Her interests include reproductive and pharmaceutical ethics and law, and she has published articles on issues such as direct-to-consumer advertising, informed consent in posthumous reproduction, and patient screening practices for assisted reproductive technologies. Kayte received her J.D. and M. Bioethics from the University of Pennsylvania Law School and School of Medicine respectively. After graduating from Middlebury College, magna cum laude, she worked several years as a mergers and acquisitions paralegal at Cravath, Swaine & Moore. While in law school, she interned at Health Care for All, a consumer advocacy group, lobbying for health care reform in Massachusetts. She was also an extern at Penn’s Office of Legal Counsel focusing on issues of consent to posthumous and assisted reproduction.
  • Lance Wahlert, PhD, is Program Director of the Master of Bioethics (MBE) in the Department of Medical Ethics and Health Policy in the Perelman School of Medicine. Dr. Wahlert is also Core Research and Teaching Faculty Member in the Department of Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies at Penn. He serves as the Director of the Project on Bioethics, Sexuality, and Gender Identity, which has demarcated a sub-field within bioethics that focuses on the intersection of LGBTQ issues and medical ethics. Twice the recipient of the Dean’s Award for Distinguished Teaching, Dr. Wahlert teaches classes on: Bioethics and Sexuality, Medicine and Literature, the History of Medicine, AIDSLaFrance1953 and Bioethics, Clinical Ethics Mediation, Cinema of Epidemiology, and Digital Media Bioethics. He has held residential fellowships at the University of Oslo, Trinity College Dublin, Queen’s University Belfast, King’s College London, and the British Film Institute. Dr. Wahlert’s scholarly interests include the historiographical legacy of the healthcare concerns of LGBTQ persons, the impact of cinematic genres on cultural histories, and the relationship between literary narratives and clinical forms of storytelling. Having been funded by the Wellcome Centre for the History of Medicine, the National Institutes of Health, and the Pew Foundation, his work has been featured in publications including Bioethics, The American Journal of Bioethics, The Journal of Medical Humanities, and The Cambridge Quarterly of Health Care Ethics. Dr. Wahlert is also House Fellow at Gregory College House in Penn’s residential college system.

WHERE: Levy Conference Center, Penn Law, 3501 Sansom Street (34th and Chestnut), Philadelphia PA 19104
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