Law dean Scott to
School dean Robert E. Scott has announced that he will step down
on July 1, 2001. He plans to return to full-time teaching and
research in 2002, after taking a sabbatical.
joined the Law faculty in 1974, and was appointed the school's
ninth dean in 1991.
year will mark an important transition time as the Law
School concludes the capital campaign, finishes construction
of the Student-Faculty Center, and celebrates the 175th anniversary
of the school's founding," Scott said. "With new leadership,
I am confident the school will advance even further toward our
goal of unparalleled excellence in legal education."
Scott's leadership, the school's current capital campaign has
raised more than $140 million, with five months remaining. Scott
spearheaded the most ambitious building project in the school's
history, a $30 million renovation of the David A. Harrison III
Law Grounds, completed in 1997. The last of his capital projects,
a $7 million student-faculty meeting and dining center on the
Law Grounds, is under way now.
"During my tenure on the law faculty, I have been a colleague
of seven of the nine deans in the history of the school,"
said Vice President and Provost Peter Low, the Hardy Cross Dillard
Professor of Law. "From personal experience, I can say without
hesitation that Bob ranks right at the top of this very distinguished
Bob steps down after 10 years as dean, he can justly be proud
that the Law School's quality and reputation as one of the best
in the nation have been enhanced, and that, in large measure due
to his leadership, it is now located in one of the finest facilities
in the country. We owe him our deepest gratitude and admiration."
dean, Scott also instituted the Mary Morton Parsons Seminars in
Ethical Values, a program providing insights into the moral and
ethical responsibilities of the lawyer as public citizen, and
founded the school's Principles & Practice Program, bringing leading
practitioners and judges to the Law School to team teach advanced
courses with full-time faculty.
important part of Scott's role has been to set the intellectual
tone and agenda for the Law School. Prior to becoming dean, he
founded the Legal Studies Workshop at the Law School, one of the
first faculty colloquia of its kind. As dean, he has urged the
Law School community to aspire to preeminence in both its teaching
mission and in the equally important obligation of engaging in
scholarly research that advances the University's core function
as an institution dedicated to the search for truth.
"Bob Scott's intellectual leadership has been as important
to the Law School as the many remarkable accomplishments of his
deanship," said Paul Mahoney, the school's academic associate
dean. "Although we will miss his extraordinary vision and
energy in the decanal role, our sense of loss is greatly alleviated
by the anticipation of Bob's continued intellectual and collegial
contributions to the Law School."
Lewis F. Powell, Jr. Professor of Law and the Arnold H. Leon Professor
of Law, Scott is a nationally renowned teacher and scholar in
the fields of contracts, commercial law and bankruptcy. He has
written four books on contracts and commercial transactions, is
the author of more than three dozen scholarly articles, and is
widely recognized as setting the standard for the economic analysis
of the law of contracts.
Scott currently serves as president of the American Law Deans
Association and has served various times as chair of the American
Association of Law Schools' sections on Contract Law, Law and
Economics, and Commercial and Consumer Law. He was elected to
the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1999, and has been
a fellow of the American Bar Foundation since 1993.
April, U.Va.'s Board of Visitors established the Robert E. Scott
Distinguished Professorship in Law, made possible by an outpouring
of support from some 250 of his colleagues on the faculty, former
students, and other alumni and friends of the school, who together
committed $1.9 million for the professorship.
earned his bachelor's degree cum laude from Oberlin College, and
is a 1968 graduate of the William & Mary School of Law, where
he was editor-in-chief of the Law Review, a member of the Order
of the Coif, and had the highest academic average in his class.
Scott earned an S.J.D. from the University of Michigan in 1973,
after which he joined the law faculty at William & Mary. In 1974
he joined the Virginia law faculty. As a visiting professor at
Columbia Law School in 1987-88, the law students voted him the
outstanding faculty member of the year.
"I look forward to serving under a new dean who, I am confident,
will bring new talents to the job," Scott said.
A national search for Scott's replacement will commence in early
fall, Low said.