By Matt Walker
Senior writer/Assistant magazine editor
The University of Florida Levin College of Law Tax Moot Court Team placed in the top three in two different categories at a recent national moot court competition.
The Securities Dispute Resolution Triathlon took place at the St. John's School of Law's Manhattan campus last month, where 24 teams from all over the country competed in negotiation, mediation and arbitration.
The UF Law team of Kevin Hublou, Kyle Griffin and Scott Hyman placed second in negotiation, while the team of Joe Malca, Sheba Abraham and Sonia Singh placed third in mediation.
"To have second and third (place) in St. John's is pretty darn good," said Tax Moot Court faculty adviser Professor Steven Willis. "It's a national competition ... I was very proud of both teams; I was very pleased that they both placed."
Malca, the student president of Tax Moot Court said he was also proud of the team's accomplishments.
"It shows that all the hard work our team put into this competition paid off," Malca said.
It was the third year St. John's hosted the triathlon, with UF Law competing in all three competitions. In 2009, UF Law placed first in mediation and second in arbitration.
Willis said a lot of work went into preparation for the competition and although they were in the Big Apple, the Tax Moot Court Team members were not up there for vacation.
"We were sitting in the hotel room all day before, and the night before, going over the stuff they were going to do," Willis said.
The negotiation and mediation rounds took place on Saturday, after which Willis and the team returned to their hotel and spent the evening preparing for the arbitration round held on Sunday morning.
"We weren't up there playing. We were up there working," he said.
The triathlon, which is co-sponsored by the Hugh L. Carey Center for Dispute Resolution and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, is "the only dispute resolution competition in which students engage in each of the three primary methods of alternative dispute resolution in a single event," according the St. John's School of Law's website.
Willis was assisted by Mike Burns (JD 11), a current LL.M. student who was on the first-place team in 2009.