New dean update: USF, Charlotte, Campbell, Ohio Northern, NC Central, Western New England, NYU

USF Hires Trasviña

The University of San Francisco School of Law named John Trasviña as the new dean as of June 2013. Trasviña has been a part of the Obama Administration as the Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity in the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development since 2009, after the Senate unanimously confirmed his nomination. He is replacing Jeffrey S. Brand, who, after 14 years, has stepped down to return to the faculty.

“As one of the nation’s leading civil rights advocates, Assistant Secretary Trasviña brings to this position a unique combination of executive management experience, fundraising acumen, institution building skills, and strong relationships with legal, business, and government leaders both locally and nationally,” USF Provost Jennifer Turpin said in a press release.

Trasviña is a graduate of Harvard University and Stanford University Law School. His involvement in the Bay Area is already vast. He later taught immigration law at Stanford University and served as the director of the Discrimination Research Center in Berkeley, Calif. He once served as president and general counsel of the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund. 


Charlotte Hires Conison

Charlotte School of Law has hired Jay Conison as the new dean, effective April 2013. Previously, he served as dean of Valparaiso University Law School under tenure for 15 years. He is also a reporter for the American Bar Association Task Force on the Future of Legal Education. Additionally, he served as Chair of the Accreditation Committee of the ABA Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar.

He is a graduate of Yale College and received his M.A. and J.D. from the University of Minnesota. He also held various positions from 1990-1998 including professor and interim dean at Oklahoma City University School of Law. He practiced business litigation with an emphasis on antitrust, franchising and employee benefits at Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal in Chicago.


Campbell Hires Leonard

Campbell University’s Norman Adrian Wiggins School of Law appointed J. Rich Leonard as the new dean effective July 2013. He fills the spot of former Dean Keith Faulkner. Leonard, a United States Bankruptcy Court Judge for the Eastern District of North Carolina, earned his bachelor’s and master’s degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He later earned his J.D. at Yale Law School. The American Bar Association awarded Leonard the Robert B. Yegge Award for Outstanding Contribution to Judicial Administration in 2011. He was also chosen to be the editor-in-chief of the American Bankruptcy Law Journal.

"Although I take enormous pride in my tenure with the federal courts, I am both humbled and elated to be offered this unique opportunity,” Leonard said in a press release. “I believe in this law school. I appreciate the focus on rigor and discipline, and the emphasis on the practical aspects of law practice.”


Ohio Northern University Hires Bales

Richard Bales has been named dean of Ohio Northern University- Claude W. Pettit College of Law. Prior to becoming dean, Bales served as the director of the Chase Center for Excellence in Advocacy at Northern Kentucky University- Salmon P. Chase College of Law. Bale succeeds Stephen C. Veltri, who served as interim dean for one year.

“Ohio Northern University is pleased to welcome Dean Bales to our campus and leadership team,” Ohio Northern University President Daniel A. DiBiasio said in a press release. “Rick’s impeccable academic credentials and scholarly body of work, along with his enthusiasm and passion for teaching students, make him the ideal choice to head the Pettit College of Law.”

Bales has worked in many areas of law including dispute resolution, labor law and employment law. In July 2010, Bales was a Fulbright Senior Specialist in Malaysia and had the same position in May 2013 in Indonesia. Bales is chair of the American bar Association committee on the national negotiation competition. He has also taught law at the University of Montana School of Law and the Southern Methodist University Dedman School of Law. He received in J.D. in 1993 from Cornell Law School.


Craig-Taylor replaces Pierce as dean at North Carolina Central University School of Law

North Carolina Central University School of Law dean Raymond Pierce has stepped down from his position, which he has held since 2005. He has returned to practice private law in the business and government relations division of Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough LLP in Raleigh, N.C.. Phyliss Craig-Taylor, former associate dean of the Charlotte Law School, has taken over the position of dean. Craig-Taylor worked at the law school once before as a professor from 2000-2006.

Craig-Taylor has already made plenty of progress at the law school including establishing a bar preparation program that has since raised bar pass rates for certain groups from 30 percent to 100 percent.


Western New England University School of Law hires Gouvin

Eric J. Gouvin has been named dean of Western New England University School of Law as of July 2013. Gouvin, who has been part of the faculty since 1991, has also served as Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and the Director of the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship in addition to teaching. Gouvin has published many scholarly works on topics such as entrepreneurial policy, corporate law and banking.

“Law practice today is evolving rapidly and law schools need to change, too,” Gouvin said in a press release. “Western New England University School of Law has always had a student focus, and I want to redouble that. I want us to be always reminding ourselves that what we’re offering, what we’re teaching, and how we’re teaching it is geared toward the students, and geared toward the students becoming not just scholars but legal professionals.”

Gouvin earned his bachelor’s degree from Cornell University, a master’s degree from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government and a J.D. and L.L.M. from Boston University School of Law.


Morrison named dean of New York University School of Law

New York University School of Law’s new dean is Trevor Morrison, a professor from Columbia Law School and a constitutional law scholar. Morrison served as associate counsel to President Barack Obama in 2009. His scholarly interests include constitutional law with a focus in separation of powers and federalism, federal courts and the law of the executive branch.

Morrison succeeds Richard L Revesz, who after 11 years of tenure, has stepped down. In addition to teaching at Columbia Law School since 2008, Morrison earned his J.D. there in 1998 after receiving his B.A. from the University of British Columbia in 1994. His academic writing has been featured in several reputable law journals including the Harvard Law Review, the Yale Law Journal and the Cornell Law Review.

 He taught at New York University prior as a visiting professor in 2007. He also worked as a law clerk for reputable people in the industry including Ruth Bader Ginsburg of the U.S. Supreme Court.