Loyola Tax-Law Leadership Exemplified in Conference
As home to a highly ranked tax program and host to an annual conference featuring the country’s top nonprofit-law experts, Loyola plays a vital, growing role in the study and practice of tax law.
Much credit goes to Ellen Aprill, the John E. Anderson Chair in Tax Law at Loyola, founding director of its Tax LLM program and co-chair of the annual Western Conference on Tax Exempt Organizations (WCTEO).
“I believe that the tax code reflects our values as a nation, and that even the most technical rules must be viewed in this larger context,” Aprill says. “A challenge is persuading law students not to be afraid of numbers. My greatest satisfaction has been seeing students fall in love with tax and pursue it as a career.”
Now in its 20th year, the WCTEO conference — to be held December 1-2 at the Millennium Biltmore hotel in downtown Los Angeles — features more than two dozen tax law experts as speakers and panelists as well as breakout sessions for different professional needs and interests. Marcus Owens, former director of the IRS Exempt Organization division, is the luncheon speaker.
“We bring together three groups that don't often mingle — lawyers, accountants and in-house staff from exempt organizations,” Aprill says. “Many attendees don’t go to conferences in DC, so we’re particularly pleased that so many government people come to speak and hear the concerns of those in the West.”
The WCTEO event is a cornerstone in Loyola’s tax-law leadership.
“Loyola has always had a strong, highly respected place in the LA community,” Aprill says. “Over the years we have established more of a national presence as well — through the offices that faculty hold in national organizations; their testimony to legislature and lauded scholarship; and our nationally ranked programs.”
For Aprill, that public engagement goes hand in hand with Loyola’s larger public interest mission.
“What I value particularly is our strong sense of community and respect for the dignity of every person,” she says. “This caring for the individual extends to our students, of course, but also fellow faculty and staff of the institution.”