LMU Loyola Law School is a sum of its parts. It is the academic deans who make up what is known as the Dean’s Suite who help bring all of those parts together. Summer 2020 transitions in their ranks – and the addition of a new Associate Dean for Equity and Inclusion – close a chapter on one era while another begins. The following professors join the ranks of existing Dean’s Suite advisors Marianne Carlton, Associate Dean for Finance & Administration, and Priya Sridharan, Associate Dean for Graduate Programs & Strategic Initiatives.
ASSOCATE DEAN FOR EQUITY & INCLUSION
Dean Michael Waterstone announced in June 2020 the creation of a new cabinet-level position: Associate Dean for Equity & Inclusion, with Professor Kathleen Kim as its inaugural holder. The announcement was part of the law school’s broader commitment to becoming authentically anti-racist and includes a number of initiatives both in curricular enhancements and added programming. [Wednesday, August 26 at 5 p.m.: Join the law school's inaugural Black August Address featuring LMU Bellarmine College of Liberal Arts Professor Dr. Stefan Bradley discussing Black in America: Between Law & Justice.]
These endeavors will include regular fora to engage in race dialogue among students, alumni, staff and faculty, and a commitment to continuing the law school’s tradition of supporting the Policing Los Angeles Forum. Newly developed classes include The Thirteenth Amendment, Racial Justice & Human Trafficking, the Race & Law Colloquium, a first-year elective on Critical Race Theory and mandatory Orientation sessions on structural racism and implicit bias. Additionally, LLS is working to establish the Racial Justice Center, which will offer faculty, staff and student events, and research and advocacy addressing racial justice, implicit bias and systemic racism.
Kim, named by The National Jurist as a law school “Leader in Diversity,” is a nationally recognized expert on immigrants’ rights and human trafficking. The longtime adviser to the Loyola Immigrant Justice Clinic, her scholarship examines the Thirteenth Amendment and its relationship to immigration, workplace rights and civil rights through the intersectional lens of race and gender. She is co-author of Human Trafficking Law & Policy, the leading casebook on human trafficking in the country, and has drafted legislation on the matter. She is a former member of the Los Angeles Police Commission.
“I take on this role with humility and deep concern and respect for our students, alums, staff and faculty. We require institutional transformation that is anti-racist and constantly vigilant in curing inequities. Black lives absolutely matter. Racist acts and systemic racism cannot be tolerated,” said Kim. “We have a responsibility to deliver a legal education that grapples with the ideals set forth in the Constitution. Contemporary legal structures disproportionately criminalize poor people of color, especially those from Black and Brown Communities. This history and current reality exposes the vulnerability of our constitutional principles. Yet our students have much more in their toolkits than a constitution that has failed to save Black lives and hold their perpetrators accountable. Our students are also community leaders, organizers and activists. I am committed to supporting them and supporting our staff and faculty to reach the highest standards of equity and inclusion."
ASSOCIATE DEAN FOR CLINICAL PROGRAMS & EXPERIENTIAL LEARNING
Longtime LLS Professor Aimee Dudovitz joins the Dean’s Suite as Associate Dean for Clinical Programs and Experiential Learning, building on the legacy created by former Associate Dean Cindy Archer, now a professor at UC Irvine School of Law. In this role, she oversees the numerous experiential learning opportunities and clinical legal programs at the law school – including the 20-plus live-client clinics that comprise the Loyola Social Justice Law Clinic.
Dudovitz joined the LLS faculty in 2010 and has extensive experience drafting briefs for trial, appellate and Supreme Courts in both the California and federal court systems. In her prior role as Director of Lawyering Skills, Dudovitz oversaw a rise in the reputation of the law school’s clinical faculty and programming. Dudovitz teaches Legal Research & Writing, Ethical Lawyering, and Civil Procedure. She has been intimately involved in the coordination of lawyering skills programming. A former federal judicial clerk, she has also been instrumental in securing federal clerkships for LLS students.
Former Associate Dean Archer recently left the LLS faculty after two decades as an innovative educator and administrator. She helped establish the LSJLC, an umbrella organization that houses many of the clinics she shepherded. Additionally, Archer was pivotal in creating the law school’s subject matter Concentrations, for which she served as inaugural director. Archer had also served as Director of Lawyering Skills and developed on Civil Litigation Advocacy and Negotiations Theory & Practice.
ASSOCIATE DEAN FOR FACULTY
Professor Gary Craig, formerly Director of Concentrations, has transitioned into his new role as Associate Dean for Faculty. He takes over the reins from former Associate Dean Brietta Clark. In his role, Craig oversees course scheduling, faculty assignments, adjuncts, and much more.
Since 2010, Associate Dean Craig has taught Civil Litigation Practice, Legal Research & Writing and Ethical Lawyering. Prior to joining the faculty, Craig was a partner in the Los Angeles office of Sidley Austin LLP, where he practiced in all areas of litigation, with an emphasis on representing accounting firms and corporations in connection with securities fraud, professional liability, negligence and breach of contract litigation.
“Loyola Law School is known for its unwavering commitment to teaching and providing our students with the highest quality legal education to prepare them to enter the legal profession,” said Craig. “Although COVID-19 has forced us to teach classes remotely and find creative ways to engage with one another, I could not be prouder of the extraordinary efforts our students, faculty and staff have made to rise to the challenge. I look forward to working collaboratively with the entire LLS community to help us get through this crisis.”
As Craig acknowledges, his predecessor’s shoes will be tough to fill. Clark, the J. Rex Dibble Fellow, was instrumental in pivoting in-person classes to a virtual experience when COVID-19 forced the LLS campus to shut down amid public health orders in March 2020. Later, her guidance helped LLS professors grow the features of their remote courses. She returns to the classroom, where her courses have included Administrative Law, Business Associations, Health Care Access, Medical Malpractice & the Public Regulation of Health Care Quality, and Torts.
ASSOCIATE DEAN FOR RESEARCH
Professor Lauren Willis, a consumer law expert widely recognized for her scholarship critiquing disclosure and “nudges” as legal regulatory devices and offering a new “performance-based” vision for consumer law, joins the academic dean ranks as Associate Dean for Research. She succeeds former Associate Dean Justin Levitt. In her role, Willis aims to enhance the production and promotion of the faculty’s scholarship.
A highly regarded teacher and scholar in consumer law and policy, Willis’ expertise includes consumer finance, privacy, contracts, financial education, and civil procedure. She joined the LLS faculty in 2004 and has held appointments as the Robert Braucher Visiting Professor of Law at Harvard Law School, Visiting Professor of Law at Cornell Law School, Visiting Associate Professor of Law at the University of Pennsylvania Law School and Lecturer in Law at Stanford Law School.
“As Associate Dean for Research in this time of social distancing, my first priority is to maintain the strong and vibrant intellectual culture of the school. For example, bringing in prominent scholars from around the world for virtual workshops and conferences, and supporting our own faculty as they stay virtually engaged in their respective fields, whether presenting papers, keynote talks, or congressional testimony,” said Willis. “My second priority is to ensure that we hire some of the brightest minds on the law professor market right now – exciting scholars who will also support our social justice mission, diversify our intellectual environment and bring our students insights from recent lawyering experience, whether that be as litigators, deal-makers, or policy-makers.”
Willis’ predecessor, Professor Levitt, returns to the classroom, where his courses include Constitutional Law, Law of the Political Process, Criminal Procedure and much more. A renowned authority on voting rights, the Gerald T. McLaughlin Fellow authored the definitive study debunking myths on voter fraud. As one of the country’s top experts on the drawing of electoral lines, he runs the website All About Redistricting. He recently served as a Deputy Assistant Attorney General in the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice.