Skip to main content
Press Releases

American Heritage Schools’ Palm Beach Campus Pre-Law Program Wins 2023 Florida State High School Mock Trial Competition

By April 15, 2023April 20th, 2023No Comments

The prestigious American Heritage Schools is pleased to announce its Palm Beach Campus Mock Trial Team won State Champions of the Florida High School Mock Trial Competition for the second year in a row.

In addition to earning the highest award, they also earned the Outstanding Professionalism and Ethics Award in legal advocacy, voted by coaches and students. Furthermore, Jonah Samara, team captain and a senior at American HeritageSchools, earned the Outstanding Witness Award.

Led by attorney coaches Kelly Harris, Adam McMichael, Rinku Tribuiani and Ani Porter, American Heritage Schools’ Pre-Law students and team successfully competed in every round, dominating their opponents as prosecution and defense. Team members from American Heritage Schools include Daniel Bednar (senior), Lindsay Brauner (junior), Pooja Gudoor (junior), Maia Merkel-Leavitt (sophomore), Bryan Li (junior), Sophia Reynoso (sophomore), Jonah Samara (senior) and Anna Shullman (junior). The team will represent Florida at Nationals in Little Rock, Arkansas, May 18-21.

The Florida High School Mock Trial Program was designed in 1991 by Annette Boyd Pitts and former Florida Bar Executive Director Marshall Cassedy. Hundreds of student participants have graduated, attended law school and become members of the Florida Bar or other state bar associations. In the program, students learn critical thinking skills, legal reasoning, analysis and professionalism, in addition to the structure and function of the courts and the legal process.

“We’re thrilled that our Mock Trial team has been undefeated in Palm Beach County for nine years in a row, and we have been named the State of Florida Champions for the last two years,” said attorney Ani Porter, Pre-Law Program Director, Palm Beach Campus. “Our success is not limited to Florida, as we are also the 2022 Champions of the Yale Bulldog Competition, and back-to-back 2021 and 2022 Providence Cup Champions in Denver. We attribute our success to our students’ commitment to preparation, determination and teamwork. As coaches, we emphasize the importance of an ethical, productive, and inclusive environment to model the students’ future successes in the real world. We are very proud of their accomplishments.”

American Heritage Schools’ Pre-Law program is a four-year honors program taught exclusively by practicing attorneys and judges. Each year students take unique law school-level courses that no other high school offers, such as Trial Advocacy, Constitutional Law, Homicide Law and Criminal Law.

The program culminates in a senior year internship when students experience the practice of law in real life. Seniors leave campus a few times per week to rotate through different law firms, agencies, offices and courtrooms throughout South Florida. They also visit judges in Circuit Court, the County Sheriff’s Office, the State Attorney’s Office, the Public Defender’s Office and the United States Attorney’s office. The connections that the seniors make with practicing judges and attorneys are invaluable and often result in future law school clerkships and internships.

For more information about American Heritage Schools’ Pre-Law program, please visit

About American Heritage Schools:

American Heritage Schools, founded in 1965, is a nationally-ranked private, nonsectarian, and co-educational college preparatory day school with two 40-acre campuses; the Broward Campus is located in Plantation, Florida, and the Palm Beach Campus is located in Delray Beach, Florida. Its campuses serve approximately 4,800 students in PK3 through 12th grades, and the student body represents over 60 different countries throughout the world. Approximately 70 percent of the faculty hold postgraduate degrees. American Heritage Schools is nationally and internationally accredited by the following associations: Association of Independent Schools of Florida (AISF), Middle States Association (MSA-CESS), and National Council for Private Schools. The Lower School includes advanced classes and 15 electives, and the Upper School offers over 300 courses with 138 honors classes, 28 Advanced Placement classes, and 75 fine arts classes. Pre-professional programs are offered inpre-med, pre-law, pre-engineering, biomedical engineering, business & entrepreneurship, and computer science with classes taught daily by doctors, surgeons, lawyers, judges, engineers, and computer scientists currently practicing in their fields. For 13 years, American Heritage Schools has been ranked the No. 1 high school in Florida for the highest number of National Merit Scholars, and the school is home to the No. 1 math competition team out of all private schools in the U.S. The Model UN team is top 3 in the nation, and the Speech and Debate team is in the top 1% in the nation. American Heritage Schools is ranked among the top private schools in Florida in STEM, according to Niche.

For more information about American Heritage Schools, visit its website

Broward Campus: (954) 472-0022 ext. 1 or email

Palm Beach Campus: (561) 495-7272 ext. 1 or email


Leave a Reply