Interim deans at SMU, Fla Coastal, Howard

SMU appoints Forrester as interim dean

Southern Methodist University Dedman School of Law has named law professor Julie Patterson Forrester the interim dean as of June 2013. She also served as the associate dean of academic affairs from 1995-96.

"We are fortunate to have Professor Forrester in place to serve in this important role," said Paul W. Ludden, SMU Dedman provost and vice president for academic affairs, said in a press release. "She is an outstanding legal scholar who also has an impressive record of community service and engagement. She will work well with the University community and with the broader legal community as we look forward to a bright future for the Dedman School of Law."

Forrester, whose primary work is in the property law field, is temporarily taking over the position after John B. Attanasio completed his term as dean in May 2013. A national search committee for a permanent replacement is planned to include 18 people including attorneys, law professors and community leaders. 

She received her J.D. from The University of Texas School of Law in 1985.


Florida Coastal School of Law Names Interim Dean

Florida Coastal School of Law has named Chidi Ogene as interim dean of the law school. They hope to appoint a permanent dean by January 2014, but Ogene has committed to stay in the interim dean position until a permanent replacement is found.

“Chidi was among a short list of very qualified internal and external candidates and we believe he has both the experience and the requisite knowledge of Coastal Law and the InfiLaw c consortium that will allow for a smooth and productive transition,” Florida Coastal President Dennis Stone said in a press release.

Ogene last served as the general counsel of a consortium of independent American Bar Association-approved law schools called the InfiLaw system. InfiLaw works with schools such as Charlotte School of Law and Phoenix School of Law. Ogene succeeds Peter Goplerud who left the position in May 2013 to serve as president of a new sector of InfiLaw.

Ogene earned a joint J.D. and M.B.A. from Georgetown University Law.


Howard University School of Law dean Schmoke steps down, Dark named interim dean

Howard University School of Law dean Kurt Schmoke has stepped down from his position. The former Baltimore Mayor held the position of dean since 2003 but has left to take a position as vice president and general counsel for the university. Schmoke replaces Norma Leftwich in his new position. Christian Dark has been named interim dean of Howard University after serving as associate dean for academic affairs since 2005.

“It is a real honor to be named interim dean of the Howard University law school,” Dark said. “I am mindful of the awesome responsibility that comes with heading a school with such a rich legacy of teaching and involvement in civil rights and justice.”

Dark co-founded  Howard University School of Law’s Fair Housing Clinic. She also taught at T.C. Williams School of Law at the University of Richmond. She was the first African-American professor to receive tenure at the law school and at the university. Her area of teaching focus includes torts, health law and product liability.