John Marshall Law School Dean Darby Dickerson Named President-Elect of the Association of American Law Schools

Chicago, Illinois, Jan. 11, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- On January 4, Darby Dickerson, Dean of The John Marshall Law School in Chicago, was named President-Elect of the Association of American Law Schools for 2019; she will serve as President during 2020. She was unanimously selected for the position by the AALS’s House of Delegates during the AALS’s annual meeting in New Orleans.

With her election, for the first time in AALS’s 119-year history, all three officers of the organization are women. The 2019 President is Professor Vicki Jackson of Harvard, and the Immediate Past President is Dean Wendy Perdue of the University of Richmond School of Law.

“Dean Dickerson has a wealth of experience leading law schools and law-related groups,” said Judith Areen, Executive Director of AALS. “Her insightful advice and her experience on the Executive Committee are of great value to the Association. We all look forward to working with her in support of law schools and advancing excellence in legal education.”

In addition to serving on the AALS Executive Committee, Dickerson is a Past Chair of several AALS sections, including the Section for the Law School Dean and the Institutional Advancement Section. She recently completed a term as Chair of the AALS Deans Forum Steering Committee and has also served the AALS as a member of the Membership Review Committee and the Audit and Investments Committee. In January 2018, she received the lifetime achievement award from the AALS Section on Legal Writing, Reasoning & Research.

Dickerson began her full-time academic career in 1995 as a professor at Stetson University College of Law. In 1996, she was named Director of Stetson’s Legal Research & Writing program. During the early years of her career, Dickerson emerged as a leader in professional organizations, such as the Association of Legal Writing Directors, the Legal Writing Institute and the ABA, working to bring recognition to legal writing professionals. She is also an elected member of the American Law Institute and a long-time participant in various American Inns of Court.

Having served as both Associate Dean and Vice Dean at Stetson University College of Law, Dickerson was named Interim Dean in May 2003 and Dean in February 2004. After leaving Stetson in 2011, she served as Dean and the W. Frank Newton Professor of Law at Texas Tech University School of Law for five and a half years before becoming Dean at John Marshall in December 2016. She is one of the few women in history to have served as dean at three law schools. She was also one of the first full-time legal writing professors to serve as dean of a law school, and over her career, she has worked to improve the status of legal writing professors by appointing them to associate dean and other administrative positions. She is a Past Director of the Association of Legal Writing Directors and a Past President and current Director of Scribes—The American Society of Legal Writers.

Dickerson earned her B.A. and M.A. from The College of William & Mary and her J.D. from Vanderbilt University Law School. After graduation, she clerked for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit and then practiced commercial litigation with the law firm now known as Locke Lord in Dallas, Texas.

About the AALS
The AALS founded in 1900, is a nonprofit association of 179 law schools. Its members enroll most of the nation’s law students and produce the majority of the country’s lawyers and judges, as well as many of its lawmakers. The mission of AALS is to uphold and advance excellence in legal education. In support of this mission, AALS promotes the core values of excellence in teaching and scholarship, academic freedom, and diversity, including diversity of backgrounds and viewpoints, while seeking to improve the legal profession, to foster justice, and to serve our many communities–local, national and international.

About The John Marshall Law School
The John Marshall Law School, founded in 1899, is an independent law school located in the heart of Chicago's legal, financial and commercial districts. The 2019 U.S. News & World Report's America's Best Graduate Schools ranks John Marshall's Lawyering Skills Program 6th, its Intellectual Property Law Program 15th and its Trial Advocacy Program 20th in the nation. Since its inception, John Marshall has been a pioneer in legal education and has been guided by a tradition of diversity, innovation, access and opportunity. In July 2018, The John Marshall Law School and University of Illinois at Chicago Boards of Trustees voted to create UIC John Marshall Law School — Chicago’s first and only public law school. The transaction, which is expected to take effect for Fall 2019, has since received approval from the Illinois Board of Higher Education and acquiescence from the American Bar Association. Learn more at


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