“The generosity of Mr. Weigand’s gift is overwhelming, and I am so grateful to have been chosen as a Weigand Scholar. The Weigand Trust is more than just a scholarship; it offers a tremendous opportunity to join a family of attorneys and scholars who have a deep devotion to serving Kansas. As someone who shares that love for Kansas, I am humbled and honored to join the Weigand family.”

Katie Jo Luningham

University of Notre Dame
Weigand Scholar: 2014, 2015

Louisburg, KS

View Katie Jo’s Video

B.A., University Scholars with Honors, Baylor University, 2011

  • Graduated summa cum laude with concentrations in Great Texts and Political Science                              
  • Honors Thesis: A Policymaking Analysis of the Healthcare and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010 and Its Effects on the American Community College System
  • Baylor Regent’s Gold Scholar
  • Byrd Scholar
  • Keynote Speaker on Student Leadership, Inaugural Dinner for President Ken Starr
  • Baylor University Homecoming Court Princess 
  • Truman Scholarship, Finalist 

J.D., Notre Dame School of Law, 2015

  • Notre Dame Law Review, Executive Notes Editor
  • Publication: Note, Resisting Rulemaking: Challenging the Montana Settlement’s Title IX Sexual HarassmentBlueprint
  • First-Year Moot Court Tournament, Winner
  • Dean’s Award (Highest Grade): Law of Education
  • First-Year Legal Writing, Top Appellate Brief in Section

Practice Areas:

  • Healthcare
  • Life Sciences & Education
  • Higher Education

Katie Jo accepted an offer to clerk for Judge Elizabeth Branch on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit in Atlanta, Georgia.  Her clerkship follows more than two and a half years practicing higher education law at Husch Blackwell in Kansas City.  

Katie Jo is a fourth generation Kansan. She graduated from Louisburg High School in 2007. While at LHS, she won two debate state championships and was elected to attend Girls Nation as a Kansas Senator.  Katie Jo also attended the United States Senate Youth Program as a Kansas delegate and was the Kansas recipient of the National Principal’s Leadership Award in 2007.

A National Merit Scholar, Katie Jo attended Baylor University in Waco, Texas.  Katie Jo majored in University Scholars, concentrating her studies in Great Texts and Political Science. She was a member of the Honors College, the External Vice President of Baylor’s higher education student lobbying group, Baylor Ambassadors, and a leader in Student Government.  While at Baylor, Katie Jo studied abroad in the Netherlands for a semester and participated in the Baylor in Southeast Asia Program, travelling to Hong Kong, Thailand, Cambodia, and the Philippines.  During her senior year, she served as Undergraduate Research Assistant to Baylor’s President, Judge Ken Starr.

In addition to her involvement at Baylor, Katie Jo remained committed to her Kansas roots.  She pursued a number of Kansas-related internship opportunities, including a summer at the Johnson County, KS District Attorney’s Office and a summer in Washington D.C. with Senator Pat Roberts.  In 2010, Katie Jo was a Kansas Finalist for the prestigious Truman Scholarship.

After graduating from Baylor summa cum laude with Honors in 2011, Katie Jo spent a year teaching English in northern Thailand at Assumption School in Lampang.  After returning from Thailand, she spent a summer working for the Kansas City law firm, Wagstaff & Cartmell.

Katie Jo was a member of the Notre Dame Law Review, where she served as the Executive Notes Editor and her Note, Resisting Rulemaking: Challenging the Montana Settlement’s Title IX Sexual Harassment Blueprint, was recently published in Issue 4 of Volume 89 and is available online at http://ndlawreview.org/publications/archives/volume-89/issue-4/.

During her 2L year, Katie Jo received the Dean’s Award (top grade) in her Law of Education seminar, and made the Dean’s List both semesters. In the Spring, Katie Jo was selected to participate in an upper-level Establishment Clause seminar that was co-taught by U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas (http://law.nd.edu/news/46271-justice-thomas-teaches-seminar-on-religious-freedom/). Through her leadership position in the Notre Dame Federalist Society, Katie Jo also attended a private reception with Justice Samuel Alito when he visited Notre Dame Law in April.

In addition to her 2L successes at Notre Dame, Katie Jo was offered a spot in the prestigious Moral Foundations of Law seminar, hosted by the Witherspoon Institute at Princeton University. 

Katie Jo spent her 3L year externing for Judge Jon DeGuilio in the U.S. District Court, Northern District of Indiana and interned with  Notre Dame’s Athletics Compliance Office.

“I was raised in a Kansas home that values faith, service, and civic duty. I know firsthand that the Sunflower State is a wonderful place to live and work, and I intend to devote the professional training I receive at Notre Dame to my home state of Kansas.”