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May 25, 2010


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Eric Muller

Dick Morgan was dean at Arizona State, Wyoming, and UNLV.

D. Daniel Sokol

Cliff Thompson at Hawaii, Wisconsin and Michigan State.

Howard Wasserman

Leonard Strickman at Northern Illinois, Arkansas, and Florida International (where he was Founding Dean).

Tim Zinnecker

Rodney K. Smith (currently President at Southern Virginia University): law dean at Capital, Montana, and Arkansas - Little Rock.


Peter Goplerud at Southern Illinois (Interim Dean), Oklahoma, Drake, and Florida Coastal.

Tim Zinnecker

Rennard Strickland (currently "distinguished professor emeritus" at Oregon): -- law dean at Southern Illinois, Oklahoma City, and Oregon.


Dennis Honabach served as dean at Western State, Washburn, and Northern Kentucky.

Marc Roark

Allen Easley was Dean at Washburn, William Mitchell and now La Verne

Marty Belsky was Dean at Albany, Tulsa, and now at Akron.


Rudy Hasl: St. Johns, Seattle, and (currently) Thomas Jefferson


Rick Matasar, currently Dean of New York Law School, was Dean of Chicago-Kent and Florida State.

CU Alum

This isn't quite the same thing, but former West Virginia law dean (and BYU associate dean) Gordon Gee went on to become president of West Virginia, Colorado, Ohio State and Brown before becoming chancellor (the local equivalent of president) at Vanderbilt. He then went back to Ohio State for a second stint as its president. That's where he is now.

Ben There

Hasl started as dean at St. Louis, then St. John's, Seattle and now Thomas Jefferson.

Eric Muller

I was dean at Harvard, Yale, and Stanford. Very few people realize this.


Rick Matasar was dean at Florida, not FSU. He left in a bit of a scandal, with grads upset that he sold naming rights on the cheap to a plaintiff's lawyer accused of being an ambulance chaser.

Brian Leiter

Roger Abrams reminds me that he was Dean (for 16 years!) at Nova Southeastern, Rutgers-Newark, and Northeastern, where he currently teaches.

I recall when Professor Muller had to resign the Stanford Deanship after trying to sell naming rights to the school to Michelle Malkin.

David Shipley

It is great to be a regular tenured law professor after 13 years of deaning ... 3 at Ole Miss, 5 at Kentucky and 5 at Georgia. Teaching Civ. Pro., Admin. Law and Copyright sure beats dealing with budget cuts, faculty battles, micro-managing from the Regents and the legislature, and US News rankings. Alumni relations and fund-raising were fun at all 3 schools, but I don't miss the headaches. My golf has not improved but my 10K times are faster now than when I stepped down as Dean in 2003. Back to an article I'm trying to finish ... Dave Shipley


Paul Verkuil has been the dean at Tulane, Cardozo and the University of Miami.

Jacqueline Lipton

OK - so I'm going to put on my feminist hiring hat again, but anyone notice that most of these folks are men? It might partly be explained on generational grounds ie people who have had at least three deanships have been around for a while and maybe women only starting deaning more recently. But might it be possible (only suggesting - not arguing this strongly) that if a woman has a "failed" deanship, however you define that, her career is over, but if a man "fails", he is able to move on to another deanship? Go on - shoot me now!! Just a thought.

BTW, did anyone mention Frank Wu who I think is taking on his third deanship now at UC Hastings? I can't remember the other two, but I'm pretty sure he was dean at two places before Hastings.

Eric Fink

Frank Wu was dean at Wayne State, but I don't think anywhere else.


In response to Jacqueline's comments, it seems to me this is more easily explained by the generation explanation. Any dean who has 3 deanships...or more...probably became dean in the 1970's or 1980's. As a result, their initial entry to academia was prior to the much needed and successful entry of larger numbers of female and minority candidates. (of course, there were some prior, but that the era shifted slowly over time to greater inclusiveness - the extent of which remains a debate point on this very blog from time to time) As a result, in 20 years I would anticipate that substantially more female and minority deans would make the list, as their career path develops over a 30-40 year period.

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