From the Dean's Desk

Dean Edward Rubin

The year and a half since I joined Vanderbilt Law School as dean has been incredibly productive and rewarding. We welcomed an impressive Class of 2009 this fall, established the Cecil D. Branstetter Litigation & Dispute Resolution Program, are building on the strengths of our faculty to develop programs in constitutional and regulatory law to add to our strong international and business law programs, and recruited five new faculty members. Next fall, we will welcome the first Ph.D. students into our new Law and Economics program. I can truthfully say Vanderbilt is one of the most exciting and innovative law schools in the country.

None of this would have happened without your tremendous support and ongoing involvement. As a first-time dean, I have been humbled by the strength of your dedication to Vanderbilt Law School and by your willingness to support our school financially, as employers of our graduates, as valued members of our adjunct faculty, as members of our alumni and national councils, as mentors, as visiting lecturers, and as a sounding board as we explore ways to prepare future graduates to practice law in an increasingly complex, global environment.

I want to note two recent accomplishments. First, I'm extremely proud of Chris Yerian, who will spend two years after she graduates this May at the Tennessee Justice Center as a Skadden Fellow, representing children and teens who need behavioral health services and aren't receiving them. Skadden Fellowships are awarded only after an intense national competition; Chris's project is one of 25 chosen nationwide. She came to Vanderbilt Law School specifically to obtain the skills needed to be an effective advocate for children, and I hope you'll join me in celebrating her success.

I'm also pleased that Alyssa Wilcox has joined the law school as Assistant Dean of Development & Alumni Relations. If you've already met Alyssa, you know she will be an extremely effective liaison between alumni and the law school. If not, I look forward to introducing her to as many of you as possible in the coming months.

This is a crucial time for the law school, and your ideas, feedback and support are more important than ever. If you are in Nashville, my door is always open, and I welcome your phone calls and emails with feedback, suggestions, questions and ideas. Thank you for making me welcome as dean of Vanderbilt Law School and for working with me to ensure that we'll continue to make a major contribution to legal practice, education and scholarship for decades to come.

Edward L. Rubin
Dean & John Wade-Kent Syverud Professor of Law