University of Wisconsin Law student, Jenny Kumosz, who just finished her second year at UW, is this year’s winner of the annual WILMIC professional responsibility award.

Each year, WILMIC recognizes the top law student in the Professional Responsibilities course. It is WILMIC’s way of supporting law students who demonstrate a high level of understanding of the professional responsibilities they will face each day as practicing lawyers, while supporting law students who are future lawyers and will be part of the profession WILMIC supports. Kumosz achieved the honor while not only excelling at UW Law School, but also giving birth to her first child, son Landon.

Kumosz currently resides in Wauwatosa. She graduated from Vanderbilt University before attending UW Law School. “During college, I had the opportunity to work for the American Heart Association on an advocacy campaign to ensure every newborn born in the state was screened for congenital heart defects,” Kumosz said. “Witnessing our pulse oximetry screening for newborns legislation pass solidified my interest in the law. After graduation, I worked on more state advocacy campaigns such as limiting liability so schools could open their recreational facilities to the public, healthier school meals, and funding for sidewalks and bike paths.

From there, she moved to Washington, D.C. to work on policy change at the national level. “Most recently, I worked to pass a smoke free bars and restaurants ordinance in Arlington, TX.”

Kumosz says going to law school has been a great move for her. “I wanted to go to law school because I never quite felt like I had all the tools necessary to be an effective advocate. If there was a legal challenge to a local ordinance or piece of state legislation, I was completely clueless about next steps. Working in public health also helped me realize that there were few lawyers and firms that had the specialized knowledge to serve the industry. I hoped that by attending law school I would be able to fill that niche. I am drawn to the entrepreneurial and client-centric nature of the legal profession.”

With the coronavirus pandemic altering law school classes, Ms. Kumosz finished the semester with online courses. “Virtual learning has been challenging with limited childcare options besides bouncing a baby on my lap. But it makes me grateful for all the things that a law student often takes for granted – the law library, hellos in the stairwells on the way to class, and learning from classmates in the moments between class.”

Kumosz will be graduating law school in May 2021 and hopes to be working for Hall Render in Milwaukee upon graduation. She was a law clerk during her 1L summer as part of the State Bar of Wisconsin’s Diversity Clerkship and will be returning for her second summer.