Dan O’Hanlon Constitution Week Essay Competition



The Dan O’Hanlon Essay Competition was established in 2009, after an anonymous donor requested that Marshall find a way to promote scholarship related to the Constitution and simultaneously honor retired Cabell County Circuit Court Judge Dan O’Hanlon.  Prior to his long career on the bench, Judge O’Hanlon served as professor and chair of the Marshall University Criminal Justice Department.  In 2007, he was selected by the West Virginia Justice Association as Judge of the Year.  The awards for the winners of the competition are presented in a public ceremony each year during the week in September that Marshall University celebrates the birthdays of both the United States Constitution and Chief Justice John Marshall, for whom it is named.


2013 Winners

Laurel Anne Peace (1st) - Disobeying the Constitution

Adam Shaver (2nd) - The Constitution’s Necessity in American Government


2013 Essay Question

O’Hanlon Essay Question — 2013


Previous Winners


Joshua Thompson (1st) – “The Individual’s Voice in Democracy: The Right to Vote”

Lesley Cruickshank (2nd) – “Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act: Preclearance and Public Policy”


W. Austin Smith II (1st) – “Constitutional Interpretation”

Justin Setliff (2nd) – “The View of an Originalist”


Aaron Preece – “The Right to Free Speech in an Academic Setting”


Joshua Cottle — “Protecting the Constitution: Balancing the Rights of the People and the Union”