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Northwestern Names New Law Dean

Legal scholar Daniel Rodriguez will become dean of law school in January

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July 27, 2011 | by Pat Vaughan Tremmel
Daniel Rodriguez

Daniel Rodriguez
CHICAGO --- Daniel B. Rodriguez, the Minerva House Drysdale Regents Chair in Law at the University of Texas School of Law, has been appointed dean of Northwestern University School of Law and Harold Washington Professor, effective Jan. 1, 2012.

“President Schapiro and I are extremely pleased that Professor Rodriguez, who is known nationally for his legal scholarship and public law work, has accepted our offer,” said Northwestern Provost Daniel Linzer. “We are confident that his talents are well suited for leading our great law school.”  

Rodriguez, who also is a former dean at the University of San Diego Law School, succeeds David Van Zandt, who had served as dean of Northwestern’s law school since 1995. (Northwestern Law Professor Kim Yuracko has served as interim dean of the law school and will continue to do so until the end of the calendar year.)

While dean of the University of San Diego Law School, Rodriguez expanded the size and stature of the faculty, created interdisciplinary academic and professional programs and undertook the first major capital campaign for the law school.  Before coming to USD, Rodriguez was a tenured professor at the University of California, Berkeley’s Boalt Hall School of Law. He has been a visiting professor at the law schools at Columbia, University of Southern California, University of Illinois and the University of Virginia. He is a nationally prominent scholar in administrative law, local government law, statutory interpretation, and state constitutional law.

Rodriguez also has consulted with federal, state and local agencies, served as an expert witness, testified before congressional committees and legislative working groups and served in various professional leadership roles, including as a member of the executive committee of the Association of American Law Schools and the council for the American Bar Association Section on Administrative Law and Regulatory Practice. He is an elected member of the American Law Institute and the American Bar Foundation.

“I am very much looking forward to the opportunity,” said Rodriguez, “to help Northwestern’s distinguished law school achieve new levels of excellence and reputation.  There is much upon which to build, yet there is much more to be done.”