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W&L law school names new dean

Washington and Lee University has named Nora V. Demleitner (right) as the new dean of the W&L law school.

Demleitner, 45, is currently dean of the Hofstra University law school; her appointment is effective July 1, 2012. She is the 17th dean in the 145-year history of the law school and the first woman to hold the position.

Demleitner, a scholar of criminal, comparative and immigration law, also will hold the Roy B. Steinheimer law professorship at the school.

W&L President Kenneth P. Ruscio announced the appointment yesterday, which concluded a national search for the successor to Rodney Smolla, who left in 2010 to become president of Furman University. Prof. Mark Grunewald has served as interim dean.

A native of Germany, Demleitner received her law degree from Yale after earning a bachelor’s degree from Bates College. She also earned a master’s degree with distinction in international and comparative law from the Georgetown University Law Center. Following law school, she clerked for Judge Samuel A. Alito Jr., then a member of the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals and now a justice on the United States Supreme Court.

Demleitner’s first academic position came in 1994 when she joined the faculty at St. Mary’s University law school in San Antonio, where she also served as the director of LL.M. programs. She joined Hofstra in 2001 as a faculty member. After serving as academic dean in 2006 and interim dean in 2007, she became Hofstra law’s first female dean in January 2008.

She has special expertise in sentencing and collateral sentencing consequences. She is the lead author of Sentencing Law and Policy, a casebook on sentencing law. She also is an editor of the Federal Sentencing Reporter.

– Paul Fletcher

[Photo by Tony Lopez]

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