Twiggs-Beskind Cup

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The Mock Trial Board hosts the annual Duke Law Mock Trial Tournament. Teams of four students from Duke Law compete for the prestigious Twiggs-Beskind Cup. All 1L and 2L students are invited to compete, and the top competitors are invited to join the Board.

History of the Twiggs-Beskind Cup

The Twiggs-Beskind Cup is named in the spirit of interscholastic competition. In the 1980s, Professor Donald H. Beskind LLM ’77 coached the Duke Law national mock trial competition team, but believed opportunities to sharpen trial advocacy skills should be accessible to more students. Soon thereafter, Prof. Beskind helped found the Mock Trial Board and start the Duke Law Mock Trial Tournament. While Prof. Beskind taught at Duke Law during this time, his full-time job was as a partner at the then-downtown Raleigh firm of Twiggs, Beskind, Strickland & Rabenau, P.A. Prof. Beskind and fellow partner Don Strickland ’84 decided that the Tournament needed a trophy worthy of the work students put into each competition. In 2004, their firm donated an imported English silver-plated trophy to the Mock Trial Board for this purpose, still in use today.

Not all the partners at the firm were Duke graduates, though. The two other named partners were alums of some of Duke’s fiercest Tobacco Road rivals: Howard Twiggs, a dedicated Demon Deacon from Wake Forest University School of Law, and Karen Rabenau, a proud Tar Heel from the University of North Carolina School of Law. In honor of the founding support of Twiggs, Beskind, Strickland & Rabenau, P.A. – and in keeping with the Mock Trial Board’s goal of promoting both intra- and interscholastic competition (even against schools with worse basketball teams) – the Tournament was named in the firm’s honor. Twiggs, Beskind, Strickland & Rabenau, P.A. went on to sponsor the Cup annually for many years, and their support lives on in Duke Law’s premier trial advocacy competition, the annual Twiggs-Beskind Cup.

2022 Twiggs-Beskind Cup Information

The deadline to register is February 2nd, 2022 at 11:59 p.m. Since this is a team event, if you sign-up you must compete. Sign up here.

The second information session will be held on January 27th, 2022 in Room 3037. We plan to release the case during this meeting and answer any questions you may have for us. If you cannot attend the meeting it is being recorded and we will send a follow-up email with the case details.

The preliminary rounds will take place on February 26-27, 2022. The Final Round will take place on March 3, 2022 with Judge Dever, a federal District Court judge for the Eastern District of North Carolina, presiding.

Any Duke Law student with at least one additional semester of enrollment remaining is eligible to compete (e.g., 3Ls graduating in May are not eligible). LLMs are also eligible to compete.

If you have any questions about the Twiggs-Beskind Tournament, please contact one of the Twiggs-Beskind coordinators, Maia Foster (, Dev Madeka (, Harry Townsend (, Tess Vartanian (


All competitors

Former Dean Levi with the final round participants of the 2010 Twiggs-Beskind Cup.