Wednesday, March 29, 2006
Columbia Dean (and Tax Prof) David Schizer has published a letter to the editor in the New York Sun regarding the claim by Curt A. Levey in Bollinger on the Spot that the law school may have hired a faculty member as a "payoff" for help given to President Bollinger in the University of Michigan affirmative action cases:
Curt A. Levey's column titled "Bollinger on the Spot" implied that Columbia University President Lee Bollinger was personally involved in the recent appointment of Olati Johnson to the Columbia Law School faculty [Opinion,March 24, 2006]. This is not the case. Although President Bollinger is a member of our faculty, he obviously has many responsibilities throughout Columbia University, and was not personally involved in the Law School's decision to hire Professor Johnson. Professor Johnson, a former clerk to Justice Stevens on the United States Supreme Court, has been serving as a Kellis Parker Fellow at the Law School for the past two years. She brings a wealth of knowledge to her scholarship and teaching, and she will teach courses here in civil procedure and constitutional law.The ethics charges referred to in the column arose in a highly partisan atmosphere and involved many disputed issues of fact that were never adjudicated, principally because the complaints were dismissed in the jurisdiction (New York) where Olati Johnson is licensed to practice law. As Mr. Levey himself noted in his column, she is personable, extremely articulate, and exceptionally bright. We're pleased to welcome her to the faculty.
Gail Heriot blogged the original article on The Right Coast, as well as Dean Schizer's response, which included a detailed reply from Avery Katz, Columbia's Chair of Entry Level Hiring. (We blogged the original article (here), as well as DeNovo's criticism of the article (here)).