Saturday, July 30, 2011

Popular Baltimore Law Dean Closius Forced Out by University Admin...

...which apparently didn't appreciate his objecting to the university capturing 45% (!!!) of law school tuition for non-law school purposes.   C.J. Peters, one of a number of faculty recruited laterally to Baltimore by Dean Closius, writes:

If you look at the two key measures of a law school’s quality – faculty and student body – you’ll see that in both areas UB is a very different, and much better, school than it was just four years ago when Phil took over.  Under Phil’s guidance, our faculty hiring has produced perhaps the most dynamic group of junior and mid-career faculty I’ve seen at a non-top-20 law school (and I’ve taught at more than a few).  Across the board, Phil has motivated the faculty to work harder at, and think more carefully about, our teaching and scholarship than most of us had ever done before.  The student body is as motivated and energized as any I’ve ever taught.  The alumni love Phil because he’s a straight shooter who cares about the legal community and the realities of legal practice....

I can add that I personally would not have moved half way across the country to join UB’s faculty were it not for Phil’s leadership.  And as chair of our appointments committee for the past two years (and a member for the past three), I can report a noticeable and steady increase in the number and quality of candidates (entry-level and lateral) who display genuine enthusiasm about the prospect of joining our faculty.  Some mention Phil by name; most comment on UB’s growing reputation as a dynamic place to be.

I think we’ll manage to continue most of this momentum, because we now – thanks largely to Phil – have a critical mass of hard workers who care about the school among the faculty, staff, alumni, and student body.  But losing Phil Closius is a significant blow.

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