The Fourth Annual Constitutional Institute at George Washington’s Mount Vernon: The Use and Abuse of the Fourth Amendment in Law Enforcement and Domestic Surveillance

MCLE Credits: 6.0
Ethics Credits Included: 0.0

Live on Site: Thursday, September 20 OR Friday, September 21 (same program both dates) /
Fred W. Smith National Library for the Study of George Washington at Mount Vernon
Registration: 8:30 a.m.
Program: 9:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
MCLE Credit: 6.0 (Ethics: 0.0)
Live-Interactive Credit: 6.0Live Interactive MCLE Credit Symbol


Why Attend?

  • A one-of-a-kind, truly immersive CLE experience at the new Fred W. Smith National Library for the Study of George Washington at Mount Vernon
  • Evaluate one of the most pressing constitutional issues facing our nation: the balance between privacy rights in an age of quickly developing technology and the need to protect those in the United States from hostile acts
  • Explore the original meaning and purpose in the founders' writing of the Fourth Amendment
  • Enjoy a special reception following the program sponsored by the Virginia Law Foundation

Cosponsored with George Washington's Mount Vernon

Presented at the Fred W. Smith National Library for the Study of George Washington on the grounds of Mount Vernon, this program will transport you to the very root of American constitutional jurisprudence with a unique opportunity to examine the government’s surveillance power from the founding of our nation to today’s digital age.

Privacy rights and the need to protect those in the United States from hostile acts are now being brought to the forefront of contemporary jurisprudential thinking in ways our founders never could have imagined. The Courts have increasingly grappled with how to apply the Fourth Amendment: balancing constitutional rights to privacy versus public safety.

George Washington's Mount VernonThe Supreme Court’s 2018 decision in Carpenter v. United States established that the government violates the Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution by accessing historical records containing the physical locations of cellphones without a search warrant. This is just the tip of the iceberg that will be explored during this year’s Institute.

Join our distinguished faculty drawn from across the nation in this one-of-a-kind pastoral, educational, and historical setting, as they address one of the most pressing constitutional issues facing our nation today.

We will not be offering the after-hours tour this year, but we do welcome a guest for the reception at no additional charge. There is a registration option for this, so that we may keep track of numbers.

This Experience CLE is not eligible for discounts.



COURSE SCHEDULE (check back for updates as we continue to add new faculty to the program)

8:30 Registration and Continental Breakfast
9:00 Welcome and Introduction
Kevin Butterfield, Ray White
9:15 Search and Seizure in the Founding Era
Ed Larson
10:15 Break
10:30 How Prohibition Created the Modern Fourth Amendment
Wes Oliver
11:15 “Olmstead v. United States”: the 4th Amendment Challenges of Prohibition Enforcement in the Early 20th Century
Richard F. Hamm
12:00 Lunch on Founders Terrace at Washington Library (Richard Stengel, Luncheon Speaker – tentative)
1:00 Primer on the Modern Fourth Amendment, up to and including the recent Carpenter decision
Graven W. Craig, Laura Donohue
2:00 Break
2:15 Panel Discussion on Modern Day Application of the Fourth Amendment in Law Enforcement and Surveillance MattersSharyl Attkisson, Ken Cuccinelli, Laura Donohue, Mark Fitzgibbons, Craig Lerner, Orin Kerr
4:30 - 5:30 Cocktail Reception with Optional Washington Library Tours



Sharyl Attkisson is a five-time Emmy Award winner and recipient of the Edward R. Murrow award for investigative reporting. She is author of two New York Times best sellers, The Smear: How Shady Political Operatives and Fake News Control What You See, What You Think and How You Vote, and Stonewalled. She is host of the Sunday morning national TV news program, Sinclair’s “Full Measure,” which focuses on investigative and accountability reporting. For thirty years, Attkisson was a correspondent and anchor at CBS News, PBS, CNN, and in local news.

Graven W. Craig has based his practice in Louisa, Virginia since becoming a member of the bar in 1997. He is the current President of the Louisa Bar Association and has served in that capacity for the last three years. He is classified as a “Super Lawyer,” a designation only handed out to the top 5% of attorneys in Virginia. He has carried this distinction for six consecutive years beginning in 2011.

The Honorable Kenneth Thomas "Ken" Cuccinelli II served as Virginia’s Attorney General from January 16, 2010 until January 12, 2014. Prior to assuming this role, he was a member of the Virginia Senate from 2002 until 2010. He was also small business owner and partner in the law firm of Cuccinelli & Day in Fairfax. He holds a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Virginia, an M.A. in International Commerce and Policy from George Mason University, and a J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He is also a regular Contributor on political matters at CNN.

Laura K. Donohue, Professor of Law at Georgetown Law, Director of Georgetown’s Center on National Security and the Law, and Director of the Center on Privacy and Technology, writes on constitutional law, legal history, emerging technologies, and national security law. Her most recent book, The Future of Foreign Intelligence: Privacy and Surveillance in a Digital Age, was awarded the 2016 IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law/Roy C. Palmer Civil Liberties Prize. She also has written The Cost of Counterterrorism: Power, Politics, and Liberty; and Counterterrorist Law and Emergency Law in the United Kingdom 1922-2000. Professor Donohue is a Life Member of the Council on Foreign Relations; an Advisory Board Member of the Electronic Privacy Information Center; and Reporter for the American Bar Association’s Criminal Justice Section Task Force on Border Searches of Electronic Devices. She obtained her AB in Philosophy from Dartmouth College; her MA in Peace Studies from the University of Ulster, Northern Ireland; her JD from Stanford Law School; and her PhD in History from the University of Cambridge, England.

Mark J. Fitzgibbons, President of Corporate Affairs, American Target Advertising, Inc., is one of the country’s leading experts in fundraising law and policy. He has litigated constitutional cases and has engaged extensively in legislative and administrative legal matters shaping favorable policy and law in the nonprofit fundraising industry. Mr. Fitzgibbons has written commentaries have appeared in The NonProfit Times, Chronicle of Philanthropy, National Law Journal, Politico, The Washington Times, The Philanthropy Monthly,,, and  He is a contributor at Washington Examiner and American Thinker. He is a frequent guest on various talk radio shows and teaches on the legal aspects of forming nonprofits and fundraising. Mr. Fitzgibbons is a member of the District of Columbia, Maryland and Virginia Bars. He is admitted to practice before the United States Supreme Court, the United States Court of Appeals for the 4th and 10th Circuits, and the United States District Courts for the District of Columbia and Virginia. He has an AV-Preeminent (highest) rating from Martindale. He is a member of the Free Speech Coalition and The Federalist Society.

Richard F. Hamm is a Professor in the Department of History at the State University of New York at Albany. His research interests focus on the interaction of law and society in the American past. His work focuses on how ideas, individuals, and structures have combined to shape law and how law has determined the courses of government officials, reformers, and ordinary people. He is the author of two books, Murder, Honor, and Law:  Four Virginia Homicides between Reconstruction and the Great Depression and Shaping the Eighteenth Amendment, Temperance Reform, Legal Culture and the Polity, 1880-1920, as well as numerous articles. His recent work has focused on constitutional issues in the 1920s, 1930s and 1940s. Professor Hamm’s honors include: Collins Fellow, University at Albany (2016); Distinguished Member, National Society of Collegiate Scholars 2012; Fulbright Senior Guest Professor at University of Erfurt in Germany (2004-2005) Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Teaching, State University of New York, 1998; President's Award for Excellence in Teaching, University at Albany, 1997; Henry Adams Prize for Shaping the Eighteenth Amendment from the Society for History in the Federal Government, 1996. Professor Hamm earned his BA in history from Florida Atlantic University, his MA in American History from The Ohio State University and his doctorate in American History from the University of Virginia.

Orin S. Kerr joined the faculty at USC Gould School of Law in January 2018 as the Frances R. and John J. Duggan Distinguished Professor of Law. From 2001 to 2017, he was a professor at the George Washington University Law School. Professor Kerr specializes in criminal procedure and computer crime law. In addition to writing more than 50 articles, he has authored and co-authored popular casebooks and co-authored the leading criminal procedure treatise. Since 2001, his publications have been cited in over 2,500 articles and more than 250 judicial opinions. Professor Kerr has argued cases in the United States Supreme Court and three federal circuits. He has testified six times before Congressional committees. In 2013, Chief Justice Roberts appointed him to serve on the Advisory Committee for the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure. In 2015, the Chief Justice again appointed him to serve on the Judicial Conference’s committee to review the Criminal Justice Act. Professor Kerr graduated from Princeton University and received a master’s degree in mechanical engineering from Stanford University. He earned his law degree from Harvard University, where he was executive editor of the Harvard Journal of Law and Public Policy. 

Ed Larson, recipient of the 1998 Pulitzer Prize in History, holds the Darling Chair in Law and is University Professor of History at Pepperdine University. Professor Larson served as Associate Counsel for the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Education and Labor and retains faculty position at the University of Georgia, where he chaired the history department. The author of eleven books and over eighty published articles, his books include A Magnificent Catastrophe: The Tumultuous Election of 1800; Evolution: The Remarkable History of a Scientific Theory; and the Pulitzer Prize winning Summer for the Gods:  The Scopes Trial and America's Continuing Debate Over Science and Religion. Larson recently published the first book-length study of George Washington’s role in creating the American Constitution, The Return of George Washington, 1783-1789, which became a New York Times Bestseller. His articles on science, history, or law have appeared in such varied journals as Nature, Time, Atlantic Monthly, American History, Scientific American, The Nation, Wall Street Journal, Isis, and twenty different law journals, including Virginia Law Review and Constitutional Commentary.  He is the co-author seven additional books, including The Essential Words and Writings of Clarence Darrow and The Constitutional Convention:  A Narrative History from the Notes of James Madison.

Craig S. Lerner is a Professor of Law at the Antonin Scalia Law School at George Mason University. He teaches Criminal Law, Criminal Procedure, Business Associations, and Conflicts of Laws. He served as Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at the law school for nine years. Prior to joining the faculty, Professor Lerner was an associate independent counsel in the Office of Independent Counsel (Whitewater Investigation). He also has clerked for the Honorable James L. Buckley of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit and worked as an associate at Cooper, Carvin, & Rosenthal and Wiley, Rein, & Fielding in Washington, D.C. He received his AB and JD from Harvard and his MA from the Committee on Social Thought at the University of Chicago.

Wes Oliver is associate dean for faculty scholarship, director of the criminal justice program, and professor of law at Duquesne University School of Law. He teaches in the areas of criminal law, criminal procedure, and evidence. His scholarly publications include books and journal article on search and seizure, interrogations, eyewitness identifications, plea bargaining, and applications of artificial intelligence to policing. Professor Oliver's most recent book, The Prohibition Era and Policing: A Legacy of Misregulation, was published by the Vanderbilt University Press in April 2018. He is a former criminal defense attorney licensed to practice in Tennessee, is frequently sought for media commentary, and has served as a legal analyst for NBC News. He holds BA and JD degrees from the University of Virginia and LLM and JSD degrees from Yale University.

Richard Stengel, Former Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs, TIME Managing Editor, and New York Times bestselling author and journalist, has seen and led the transformation of mainstream media. He remains centered at the crossroads of media, policy and politics as a cable new commentator. He is a weekly guest on the “The 11th Hour with Brian Williams” and appears regularly on “Morning Joe” and “Andrea Mitchell Reports”. As Senior Adviser to Snapchat, Stengel keeps pace with technology and policy as startup companies must comply with government regulations as they seek a profitable business model. Prior to taking up his role as managing editor of TIME in 2006, Stengel was the president and chief executive officer of the National Constitution Center. Named the Walter Shorenstein Media and Democracy Fellow at Harvard Kennedy School’s Shorenstein Center for 2017, Stengel was the Ferris Professor of Journalism at Princeton University where he taught “Politics and the Press.” A magna cum laude graduate of Princeton University, he won a Rhodes Scholarship to Oxford where he studied English and history.


Locations, Dates and Fees

LIVE ON SITE REGISTRATION FEES: Thursday, September 20 OR Friday, September 21 (SAME PROGRAM BOTH DATES) (Lunch and printed materials included)
George Washington's Mount Vernon
$325 regular registration.
$325 regular registration, plus guest for reception at no charge.

If space is available, on-site registration will be available on the day of the program for an additional $15 per category.

Fred W. Smith National Library for the Study of George Washington at Mount Vernon /
(Venue Website / Google Map)
3600 Mount Vernon Memorial Highway
Mount Vernon, VA
(703) 780-3600

Participants should park in the West Parking Lot and enter through the Library pedestrian gate.

Cancellation/transfer request requests will be honored until 5:00 p.m. the day preceding the seminar.

If you have a disability that requires special accommodation, please contact Virginia CLE® well in advance of the program date.

Private recording of this program is prohibited.

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