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Saturday, February 10, 2007

Spotlight_1_1Anne-Marie Rhodes (Loyola-Chicago)

        • B.A. 1973, Albertus Magnus College
        • J.D. 1976, Harvard

             

 

RhodesI have always thought that I am one of the lucky ones, for I love what I do. Dealing with students and providing opportunities for them provides continual satisfaction and challenges. My teaching focuses on estate planning, estate and gift tax, wills and trusts, and basic income tax. In addition, I teach seminars in art law and international law.

I arrived at Loyola University Chicago by way of an interest in teaching long before law school, work in mathematics and art in college, and a conscious decision to learn estate planning while working at a large corporate law firm in Chicago. One day, the opportunity to teach full time at Loyola literally walked into my office.

I had taught as an adjunct previously but had never pursued a full-time position. Frankly, the decision was a professional deep breath and plunge into the pool. I thought I would like it, but I was uncertain if I wanted to give up the real world connection of a practice. Happily, I have enjoyed the teaching, having Jeffrey Kwall and Christian Johnson as colleagues and friends ensures that. I have also retained the connection to practice.

Since ERTA ’81, I’ve been Of Counsel at a mid (very soon to be a large, international) firm with 10 attorneys practicing estate planning. My Of Counsel relationship has been invaluable to me professionally for the real world context of clients and personally for the wisdom and friendship of my mentor. From him and from law firm colleagues, I have lived and learned that the best counseling requires the fullest understanding of all the implications of the decisions, not simply the dollars involved.

Professionally, I am an Academic Fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTEC). Anyone who attends an ACTEC conference comes away with sophisticated technical insights into current issues. For Academic Fellows, additionally, the meetings and the people they draw offer especially rich opportunities and insights. As any tax professor can attest, the ABT principle (Anything But Tax) operates strongly to limit the interest of most colleagues in tax issues, and the opportunity to connect with other estate planning professors regarding our teaching is valuable and as well as refreshing.

One of my favorite Loyola accomplishments outside of tax was establishing with my colleagues Thomas Haney and Dean Nina Appel a foreign study program in Rome in 1983. More recently, we launched a comparative law course on Chile in affiliation with the Jesuit law school, Universidad Alberto Hurtado, that includes a field trip to Santiago over spring break. For 2008, a program in China is in the works. At times I think of the old slogan for the U.S. Navy, "Join Loyola, See the World." The only downside to the international travel is leaving my husband David (a lawyer) and my two sons, James and Peter.

The comparative aspect has worked its way into my research interests. I have come to enjoy the tax aspects of art. I have written about several aspects and, most recently, about the taxation of Nazi-looted art in addition to papers related to tax and other aspects of estate planning. As the law evolves regarding cultural property, its control and taxation will raise new policy decisions and issues. Working with my Chilean colleagues has highlighted issues of tax administration and differences in approach by tax lawyers in the civil law and the common law systems.

It is hard to imagine a more satisfying professional life.

Each Saturday, TaxProf Blog shines the spotlight on one of the 700+ tax professors in America's law schools. We hope to help bring the many individual stories of scholarly achievements, teaching innovations, public service, and career moves within the tax professorate to the attention of the broader tax community. Please email me suggestions for future Tax Prof Profiles. For prior Tax Prof Profiles, see here.

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