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December 11, 2013

Bjerre appointed to UCC supervisory panel

University of Oregon School of Law Professor Carl S. Bjerre, a nationally recognized commercial law scholar, has been appointed to the Permanent Editorial Board for the Uniform Commercial Code. 

The Permanent Editorial Board (P.E.B.) was established in the early 1960s while the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC) was poised for nationwide enactment. It is a joint committee of the UCC’s two sponsoring organizations, namely the Uniform Law Commission (ULC) and the American Law Institute (ALI). The chief purposes of the P.E.B. are to advise the ULC and ALI on changes that may be needed to various articles of the UCC, and to issue commentaries from time to time clarifying the UCC’s application to important issues arising in the courts or from evolving commercial practices. P.E.B. Commentaries are considered highly authoritative and are often cited in judicial opinions as a basis for decision. “I greatly appreciate the honor and responsibility of joining this important group,” said Bjerre. 

The UCC itself is an integrated set of statutes serving as a framework for business transactions, large and small, throughout the nation. Having been adopted by the legislatures of all 50 states as well as the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, the UCC facilitates inter- as well as intra-state transactions and thereby helps knit together the nation’s economy. “We all benefit from the UCC all the time, because it’s not just about resolving disputes,” says Bjerre. “The UCC is the invisible infrastructure for so many of our economic interactions.”

Described affectionately by colleagues as a “commercial law junkie,” Bjerre first became involved with the UCC while an associate at the New York City head office of Cleary, Gottlieb, Steen & Hamilton LLP. As a UO faculty member Bjerre was appointed to the ULC by Governor Kitzhaber and has worked extensively with the Oregon state legislature, the Oregon Law Commission and others in securing enactments of UCC amendments and other uniform acts. On the international front, Bjerre has been a member of the United States delegation for negotiation of the Geneva Securities Convention and a member of the UNIDROIT Study Group on Principles for the Netting of Financial Instruments. He currently chairs the American Bar Association’s UCC investment securities subcommittee and contributes to the influential multi-volume Hawkland UCC treatise. By all accounts these experiences have greatly enriched and enlivened Bjerre’s classroom teaching ability as well.

Bjerre joined the UO faculty in 1996 and is now the Wallace & Ellen Kaapcke Professor of Business Law. In his spare time Bjerre is a member of the Board of Directors of the Eugene Symphony Association and chairs the symphony’s Artistic Advisory Group. He is married to Andrea Coles-Bjerre, a professor of bankruptcy law on the UO faculty who was recently named Faculty Director of the law school’s business law program.

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