Thursday, March 14, 2024

Law School Deans and University Presidents with Roots in Clinical Legal Education

Updated and updating, May 16, 2024. 


In preparation for a workshop at the AALS Conference on Clinical Legal Education for clinical professors interested in law school leadership and administration, I have been assembling a list of law school deans and university presidents with experience and backgrounds in clinical legal education. 

I relied on law school biographies, Rosenblatt's Dean Database, personal knowledge, the generous insight of expert clinical professors who have been part of this movement across its several generations, help from the LawClinic listserv, and outreach from the deans themselves. (This is a working project, so please leave a comment or email me with any additions or corrections.)  

These are the current deans or university presidents with backgrounds and experience in clinical legal education (2023-2024): 

Johanna Bond (Rutgers) 

Nicky Booth (UIC)

Camille Carey (New Mexico)

Camille Davidson (Southern Illinois)

Daniel Filler (Drexel) 

Zelda Harris (Western New England, former interim dean at Loyola Chicago)

RenĂ©e McDonald Hutchins (Maryland, former dean at UDC) 

Lolita Buckner Inniss (Colorado)

Melanie B. Jacobs (Louisville) 

Richard Moberly (Nebraska)

Brian Pappas (North Dakota)

Patricia Roberts (St. Mary's)

Tania Tetlow (president at Fordham, former president at Loyola - New Orleans)

Elizabeth Kronk Warner (Utah)

Frank Wu (president of Queens College, former dean at Wayne State and UC Hastings (now UC Law San Francisco))


These are deans appointed for 2024-2025 with backgrounds in clinical education:

Anna E. Carpenter (Oklahoma)

Jenny Roberts (Hofstra)

Julie Lawton (interim dean at DePaul)

Nick Schroeck (interim dean at Detroit Mercy) 


These are former deans and university presidents with backgrounds and experience in clinical legal education:

Jane Aiken (Wake Forest) 

Michelle J. Anderson (CUNY, now president at Brooklyn College)

Judith Areen (Georgetown, AALS Executive Director)

Barbara Bergman (interim dean at New Mexico)

Doug Blaze (Tennessee)

Katherine S. Broderick (UDC)

Edgar Cahn and Jean Camper Cahn (founders of Antioch School of Law, now UDC) 

Ron Chen (Rutgers)

Robert Dinerstein (acting dean at American)

Charles Halpern (founding dean at CUNY)

Joe Harbaugh (Nova Southeastern) 

Joan Howarth (Michigan State)

Peter Knapp (interim president and dean at Mitchell|Hamline)

John Kramer (Tulane) 

Joyce McConnell (West Virginia, later president at Colorado State)

Elizabeth McCormick (acting dean at Tulsa) 

Elliot Milstein (American, interim president at American, former president of AALS)

Eric Neisser (acting dean at Rutgers, later dean at Franklin Pierce)

R. Nils Olsen Jr. (Buffalo) 

Peter Pitegoff (Maine)

Leo Romero (New Mexico) 

Suellyn Scarnecchia (New Mexico)

Robert Smith (Suffolk)

Deanell Reese Tacha (Pepperdine)

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For clinicians interested in deaning, serving as an associate Dean is often the first step. This list would be considerably longer and maybe more helpful to folks if it included associate deans. You might want to consider that.

Posted by: Jim Stark | Mar 14, 2024 4:48:46 PM

You should come to our workshop! We're going to be talking all that and more.

Posted by: Jeff Baker | Mar 15, 2024 7:05:48 AM

I also have a clinical background and taught in Harvard Law School's Legal Services Center from 1996-98.

Posted by: Melanie B. Jacobs | Mar 19, 2024 8:00:32 AM

Great list! I was a clinical professor at Michigan State until 2017 and am now Dean at North Dakota.

Posted by: Brian Pappas | Mar 19, 2024 8:27:14 AM

Lolita Buckner Inniss, Dean of the University of Colorado Law School, also began her academic career as a clinician.

Posted by: Zachary Mountin | Mar 19, 2024 9:24:30 AM


Posted by: Jeff Baker | Mar 20, 2024 8:03:57 PM

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