Washington, D.C. (January 4, 2020) – Darby Dickerson, Dean and Professor of Law at the University of Illinois at Chicago John Marshall Law School, was inducted as President of the Association of American Law Schools (AALS) after delivering her inaugural address at a meeting of the AALS House of Representatives at the AALS Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C.
“I am incredibly honored to serve as the 2020 President of the AALS,” said Dean Dickerson. “The theme for my presidential year is ‘The Power of Words.’ I am from the legal writing field, so the theme pays homage to my area of specialty. In addition, for lawyers and legal educators, words are the instrument with which we practice our craft. For the year, I am encouraging legal educators to continue breaking down the caste system that exists in most American law schools, to train students to value candor over spin, and to use their words to spur changes that will protect the rule of law and help create a more just and equitable society.”
Dean Dickerson takes over from 2019 AALS President Vicki C. Jackson, Thurgood Marshall Professor of Constitutional Law at Harvard Law School, who transitioned to Immediate Past President on the AALS Executive Committee.
The AALS House of Representatives also voted today to accept the nomination of Vincent D. Rougeau, Dean of Boston College Law School to serve as 2020 President-elect. The representatives also approved the nominations of Austen L. Parrish, Dean of Indiana University Maurer School of Law and Melanie D. Wilson, Dean of University of Tennessee College of Law, to serve three-year terms on the AALS Executive Committee.
“I am delighted to serve as President-elect of the AALS,” said Dean Rougeau. “I have found my service on the Executive Committee and as chair of the Deans’ Steering Committee to be very rewarding, and I am looking forward to assuming this new role. I will do my very best to continue the inspiring work of my predecessors that has made the AALS an outstanding resource and support for the legal academy.”
“The Association of American Law Schools has long played an important role advancing excellence in legal education,” said Dean Parrish. “It’s a privilege to join a tremendous group of national leaders on the Executive Committee and to help support the association’s critical mission.”
“I am honored to join such accomplished and distinguished colleagues on the AALS Executive Committee,” said Dean Wilson. “The AALS performs incredibly valuable work in support of legal education and on behalf of its member schools, and I look forward to doing my part to further the organization’s mission of excellence.”
The Association of American Law Schools (AALS), founded in 1900, is a nonprofit association of 179 member and 19 fee-paid 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 its many communities—local, national and international.