Atlanta’s John Marshall Law School Appoints Three New Administrators

Atlanta’s John Marshall Law School (AJMLS) – Georgia’s only fully accredited, stand-alone law school – has appointed a new Chief Financial Officer, an Associate Dean of Academic Affairs and an Associate Dean of Recruitment and Marketing.

New administrators include:

Kevin Cieply, Associate Dean of Academic Affairs

Prior to joining AJMLS in 2008, Cieply served more than 22 years in the Army and Wyoming Army National Guard as a helicopter pilot and a Judge Advocate General Corps (JAG) Officer. His wide range of military legal experience includes prosecuting courts martial cases, prosecuting criminal procurement fraud cases in federal courts as a full-time Special Assistant U.S. Attorney, and serving as the Senior Legal Advisor on all military matters for the Wyoming Army National Guard. Cieply’s last military assignment was as the Chief, Land Operations Law, North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) and U.S. Northern Command (NORTHCOM), concentrating on counterterrorism and Defense Support of Civilian Authorities. He retired from the military with the rank of Colonel.

Cieply graduated from Notre Dame Law School and holds an LL.M in Military Law, Specialization in Criminal Law.

Allan Brezel, Chief Financial Officer

As Chief Financial Officer, Brezel directs and manages the school’s financial investments. Before joining AJMLS, Brezel served as Chief Financial Officer of various companies.

In 1978, Brezel started his career as a Senior Accountant at Deloitte and then moved on to work in private industry. He is a graduate of the Goizueta Business School at Emory University in Atlanta.

Alan Boyer, Associate Dean of Recruitment and Marketing

As Associate Dean of Recruitment and Marketing, Boyer oversees the admissions, recruitment and marketing functions of the law school. Before joining AJMLS, he most recently was Managing Partner of the Marketing Lab and a tenure-track professor of communications at Georgia Highlands College. Boyer has held various executive marketing and communications positions, including Chief Marketing Officer at Atlanta Life Financial Group, Senior Vice President of Marketing and Communications at the Federal Home Loan Bank of Atlanta, Vice President of Global Marketing and Communications at Equifax. Other experiences include positions at The Coca-Cola Co., SBC Communications, First Data and the Atlanta Committee for the Olympic Games.

Boyer holds a certificate in brand communication strategy from Northwestern University and a certificate in marketing strategy from University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. He earned a Master of Science in Mass Communications from Kansas State University and a Bachelor of Science in Journalism and Mass Communications from Lincoln University of Missouri.

Founded in 1933 and fully accredited by the American Bar Association, Atlanta’s John Marshall Law School (AJMLS) is Georgia’s only stand-alone law school focused on preparing talented students for legal careers in the public and private sectors. AJMLS students matriculate in a learning environment that includes exceptional faculty, accelerated externships and intelligent learning collaboration. AJMLS academic programs include a Juris Doctorate, J.D. Honors Program in Criminal Justice and a LL.M in Employment Law. AJMLS serves as a strategic resource for legal talent for small, mid-size and large law firms, corporations and public service organizations throughout the country. For more information about AJMLS, please visit us at

AJMLS Professor Michael Mears Gives Thoughts on Troy Davis Execution

Gaining national and international attention, the scheduled execution of Troy Davis for the killing of Savannah police officer, Mark MacPhail has created a media frenzy and raised many ethical, moral, and legal questions.

In the two decades since Davis was condemned for fatally shooting MacPhail, seven of the nine witnesses who testified against Davis at his trial have recanted their testimony.

Based on his vast experience with death penalty cases and trials, Atlanta’s John Marshall Law School professor Michael Mears was sought out by Georgia Public BroadcastingThe Atlanta Journal Constitution, and The Washington Post to give his expert opinion on the Troy Davis execution.

An excerpt from the GPB article quoting Mears states:

If the death sentence is carried out, Michael Mears of Atlanta’s John Marshall Law School says, it will be because the courts aren’t well-equipped to deal justly with recanted testimony.


“The courts want finality in these trials,” Mears says. “They don’t want these trials going on forever and ever. And that’s understandable. The problem in a death penalty case is if you don’t get it right, then someone’s going to die. And they’re going to die for a crime they might not have committed.”

Atlanta’s John Marshall Law School Adds Impressive Roster of Tenured and Visiting Professors

Standing firmly behind our mission to prepare highly competent and professional lawyers who are committed to the improvement of the legal system and society, Atlanta’s John Marshall Law School (AJMLS) is excited about the recent addition to our growing institution.

AJMLS has hired seven tenured/tenure-track professors and seven visiting professors to bolster its commitment to marry real-world experience with classroom academics. “Coupled with the faculty already on staff, we believe our new personnel offer our students a brilliant mix of expertise and enable us to maintain our 13-to-1 student-faculty ratio.” said Richardson Lynn, dean and professor of law at the Law School.

The tenured/tenure-track professors include: 

Anthony Baker
Professor Baker brings a broad range of legal teaching experience to AJMLS, having previously taught criminal and constitutional law, history of law, ethics, mediation and research at Campbell University School of Law, Pepperdine University School of Law, University of Maine School of Law, and University of Wisconsin Law School. He is a graduate of the University Of North Carolina School of Law. 

Robert Brown
Professor Brown’s extensive real-world legal experience began as Chief Legal Counsel to the City Council of Philadelphia, where he led a team of lawyers in the drafting of zoning and tax ordinances. He then practiced real estate and finance law at Klehr, Harrison, Harvey, Branzburg & Ellers in Philadelphia. From 2004 – 2009, he worked in Atlanta focusing his practice on affordable housing, capital markets and real estate law. He is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania Law School. 

Christine Cerniglia
A 2003 graduate of the Loyola University School of Law, Cerniglia’s legal teaching background dates back to 2004. Having served as a staff lawyer for the State of Florida, Sixth Judicial Court, she brings a wealth of real-world experience to the classroom.

Rebecca Godbey Cummings
A graduate of William and Mary Law School, this is Cummings’ second experience teaching at AJMLS. She also served as an adjunct professor teaching Wills, Trusts and Estates and a writing-intensive Advanced Estate Planning Seminar from 2005 – 2008. She was highly ranked by students each semester, and her classes were routinely filled to capacity.

James Gelin
A graduate of Duke University Law School, Professor Gelin is an experienced trial attorney who represented defendants as an Assistant Public Defender with the Office of the DeKalb County Public Defender from 1991 – 2010. Before joining the Public Defender’s office, he practiced corporate law, first at Goodwin Procter LLP in Boston, and then at Arnall Golden Gregory LLP in Atlanta. Professor Gelin previously taught criminal law at AJMLS as an adjunct professor from 1994 – 1995.

Michael Oeser
Oeser holds a Master of Laws from the University of Wisconsin and is a member of several state and tribal bar associations, including Texas State Bar, Wisconsin State Bar, Cherokee Nation Bar and Ho-Chunk Nation Bar. His experience also includes academic appointments dating back to 2006 and an extensive time in private practice. 

Tim Saviello
Saviello comes to AJMLS with a rich background in criminal defense, having been the principal of his own criminal law practice representing individuals facing criminal investigation and prosecution by the United States in the Northern District of Georgia. A graduate of the University of Notre Dame Law School, Saviello has practiced law throughout the southeastern United States.

Visiting professors also have a wide range of legal expertise. The visiting professors joining Atlanta’s John Marshall Law School include: Lovita Tandy; Allison Kort; Victoria Carlton-Sadler; Rose Anne Nespica; LaTisha Faulks; Scott Boone; and David Hricik.

For a full list of Atlanta’s John Marshall Law School Faculty, click here.