Paul L. Caron

Sunday, March 24, 2019

Incoming Batch Of Law Deans Is More Diverse Than Ever; New Women, Minority Deans Exceed New White Male Deans

National Law Journal, Incoming Batch of Law Deans Is More Diverse Than Ever:

The wave of minority women taking the helm at law schools is gaining momentum.

Two law schools in the past week have named black women as dean. Stetson University College of Law has tapped Michele Alexandre to be its next top administrator—the first African-American to fill that role. On Wednesday, the University of Cincinnati announced that Verna Williams was being elevated from interim dean to full dean. She, too, will be the school’s first black dean. Those appointments add to what is already shaping up to be a diverse crop of incoming deans.

At Stanford Law School, longtime professor Jenny Martinez, who is Hispanic, will assume the deanship in April. And G. Marcus Cole, who is black, is slated to become the first nonwhite dean of the Notre Dame University Law School this summer. In January, Rutgers Law School named faculty member Kimberly Mutcherson as its new co-dean, while the University of the District of Columbia David A. Clarke School of Law tapped Renée McDonald Hutchins to take over the deanship next month. Both women are African-American.

Danielle Conway, the first black dean at the University of Maine School of Law, this summer is moving south to take the top spot at Pennsylvania State University’s Dickinson Law. Meanwhile, Tamara Lawson became the first minority woman to lead St. Thomas University School of Law when she was elevated to dean in November. ...

The number of women and minorities announced as new deans this semester has thus far outnumbered white men named to those jobs.

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Are law schools better off with favoritism over impartiality in hiring and appointments? Voices of those who once considered all views for the best outcomes have been replaced by groups who demand that only their views be accepted and everyone else needs to shut up.

Posted by: Woody | Mar 25, 2019 2:09:38 PM

This is diversity only if you believe a few physical differences in bodily attributes make people different in some far deeper and heavily moral sense. My father's generation fought those for whom diversity was evidenced by being blond-haired, blue-eyed, light-skinned and brachycephalic as opposed to having prominent noses and a hunched physique. The latter were regarded as inherently evil. We face a remarkably similar mindset.

Then as now, minor physical traits are said to bestow moral superiority, witness the current attacks on "toxic masculinity" and "white privilege." Even the arguments advanced for each are similar. Both stereotype the demeaned group as if it had one set of characteristics. Both use dubious statistics about the alleged vices and supposedly unfair success rates in professions to drive the demeaned group from jobs, including in particular, university positions.

History is repeating itself—both times as tragedy.

--Michael W. Perry, editor of Chesterton on War and Peace: Battling the Ideas and Movements that Led to Nazism and World War II

Posted by: Michael W. Perry | Mar 25, 2019 6:22:37 AM