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Northwestern Law Timeline

Check out this interesting timeline of the Law School from its founding in 1859 to the present.  A nutshell without the nuance to be sure, but still an interesting tour of the Law School’s key milestones.


Center on Wrongful Convictions and the fruits of justice

This Chicago Tribune article graphically describes the long ordeal of Mr. Juan Rivera, an ordeal ended earlier this month.  Thanks to the efforts of a great collection of students, faculty, and alumni, and especially the Center on Wrongful Convictions at Northwestern University School of Law, justice has been served.

Through the good works of CWC, the Law School pursues retail justice on behalf of the wrongfully accused — indeed, dozens of incarcerated individuals have been released.  Wholesale justice is furthered as well.  Lawyers, law students, and intrepid journalists relentlessly investigate and uncover the bad policies, neglectful behavior, and mendacity of many individuals and institutions within the criminal justice system.  In this way, legal rules and public opinion work together toward constructive legal reform.  A great mission vigorously pursued by committed citizens under the aegis of Northwestern’s Law School.


I hear Chicago is cold in the winter

Longtime Californian and new transplant from Texas, naturally my anxieties turn to the weather — weather which neither me nor my wife, Leslie, have ever experienced in our pampered west coast/southwest life experience.

How bad is it?  Looking to wise bartenders and cabbies for reassurance, I ask “is it really THAT bad?”  The answer is always some variation on:  “Yes, it’s something you never really get used to.  A long winter; snow drifts as tall as Derrick Rose on Lake Shore Drive; wind that hits you like a Bears linebacker. Read more »


Layers and Lawyers

Northwestern Law Levy Mayer Building DoorwayAs you enter the Northwestern Law School in downtown Chicago, you are immediately struck by the striking architectural admixture of design and form.  The Rubloff building dating from the 1980’s conjoins, via an attractive atrium, with Levy-Mayer, the century-old edifice housing gothic style faculty offices and seminar rooms, the magnificently aged Lincoln Hall, and the many reminders of a law school life well-lived.  John Henry Wigmore’s Northwestern; our Northwestern.

The built environment of the Law School is, in short, formed of many layers.  Navigating these layers poses many challenges, to be sure, but it provides a nice metaphor for thinking about how best to articulate a vision for a law school’s future, while living in the present and noticing its past. Read more »


Northwestern Now

Northwestern Law SchoolOn January 1, 2012, I have the honor of taking my post as the next dean of the Law School at Northwestern University.  Following in the footsteps of a century and a half of able leaders, I begin my service with humility and excitement.  Northwestern Law School (I prefer NW Law to NU Law, for what it’s worth) is an ambitious institution; and I have great ambitions for it.

These great ambitions can be sketched thusly:

(1) To provide a vital, eclectic, and rigorous environment for our students to study the law and legal institutions, a study that necessarily includes exposure to many disciplines, other perspectives, and the deep intersections between the subject of law, the practice of law, the place of law in a diverse society; Read more »


Reflections from the Dean of Northwestern Law

Welcome friends of Northwestern University School of Law. I hope you will enjoy these observations about our Law School, about legal education and the rapidly changing legal profession, and about (on a somewhat lighter note) the adventures of a new transplant to the City of Big Shoulders.

I welcome your feedback: