July 21, 2009
DePaul Faculty: Provost's Selection of Interim Dean Violates ABA Standards
Last week, sixteen tenued members of the DePaul faculty sent this letter to the ABA alleging that the provost's appointment of Illinois state appellate judge Warren Wolfson as Interim Dean following the abrupt firing of Dean Glen Wiessenberger violates ABA Standard 206(d):
The sole focus of this report is the Provost’s action in appointing an interim dean without allowing the faculty to advise, consult, and make recommendations to the university administration regarding the dean selection. The facts indicate that the university administration decided, in secret, to appoint a new dean at least two months before this action was publicly announced and four months before that dean’s tenure would begin. No good cause for lack of consultation with the faculty has been shown. We believe that these actions negate all statements relating to faculty governance in the recently submitted Site Visit report and require re-evaluation of this key issue.
In effect, the university administration has secretly appointed a dean to replace a dean whose dismissal directly relates to a report to the ABA on noncompliance with its accreditation standards. The appointment has been made without any opportunity for the faculty or others in the law school community to discuss the appointee’s views on any aspect of legal education, including the issues relating to the dismissal of our former dean. No one in the law school community has been informed about the appointment process or any discussions between the appointee and administration regarding the future direction of the law school.
We strongly believe that this appointment process is severely flawed and does not comply with ABA Standard 206 governing dean selection.
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