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Law School Dean Candidates Announced

The search committee responsible for choosing the next dean of UNC’s School of Law have announced the final round of candidates to visit campus for interviews in April. The following five candidates have accepted invitations to visit campus:

  • Robert Ahdieh, vice dean and K.H. Gyr Professor of private international law, Emory University School of Law;
  • Michelle Anderson, dean and professor of law, CUNY School of Law;
  • Sam Bagenstos ’90, Frank G. Millard Professor of law, University of Michigan Law School;
  • Martin Brinkley ’92 (JD), a partner with Smith Anderson in Raleigh; and
  • Daniel Crane, associate dean and Frederick Paul Furth Sr. Professor of law, University of Michigan Law School.

The next dean will succeed Jack Boger ’74 (JD), a longtime professor at the school who became dean in 2006. Boger announced in May 2014 that he would step down in July 2015 to return to the law school faculty. He is the school’s 13th dean and has been a member of the UNC faculty for more than 25 years. Prior to 2006, Boger served as deputy director of  UNC’s Center for Civil Rights. He also holds the Wade Edwards Distinguished Chair.

“I have opened my every speech during the past eight years by noting what a privilege it is to be the dean of the UNC School of Law,” Boger said a year ago. “My words have been heartfelt. Working with our splendid staff, taking pride in our brilliant and accomplished faculty, helping to mold the careers of the next generation of Carolina lawyers, and spending time with our wonderful alumni have been priceless experiences.”

With Boger’s direction, the school has overseen major curricular reform, including the creation of a new first-year research and writing program and an expanded experiential learning program. A new selection of 25 transition-to-practice courses offers students hands-on learning in a broad range of practice areas, from bankruptcy to biotechnology. The externship program now offers more than 155 students each year the opportunity to practice their legal skills through work with companies, law firms and government agencies.

Under Boger’s leadership, the school’s full-time faculty has grown from 43 in 2006 to 63 in 2014. Boger inaugurated four new annual awards for faculty scholarship, teaching and service; elevated support for faculty summer research and professional development activities; and created funds to support faculty empirical research and scholarly travel. Virtually every major staff department was reorganized during his tenure. A new assistant dean for public service was created, and all offices serving students were substantially enlarged.

Mike Smith ’78 (JD), dean of UNC’s School of Government, headed the search committee for a new dean that resulted in the five names announced in late March. “These remarkable people emerged from the search process as the strongest candidates,” Smith said. “We have moved as quickly as possible to identify, recruit and schedule visits by these candidates before the end of the academic semester. Our goal is to give everyone in the Law School community, including alumni, the opportunity to meet these candidates and offer feedback to the search committee.”

An interview schedule and the candidates’ curricula vitae are available at www.law.unc.edu/about/deansearch.

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