October 17, 2016
Darby Dickerson, dean and W. Frank Newton Professor of Law of the Texas Tech University School of Law, has resigned after being named dean of the John Marshall Law School in Chicago. The resignation is effective Jan. 1.
"I would like to thank Darby for her leadership of the School of Law and wish her the best in her role at John Marshall," Texas Tech President Lawrence Schovanec said. "Her innovative leadership and support of the faculty and students was an important favor in many achievements that have advanced the reputation of our School of Law."
Dickerson was appointed dean at Texas Tech in July 2011. She previously served as interim dean and dean at Stetson University College of Law for eight years.
"It has been a tremendous pleasure and honor to serve as dean and the W. Frank Newton Professor of Law for the last five and a half years," Dickerson said. "We have a strong, dynamic community, and I will always cherish my time here and the relationships I developed. Over the next couple of months, I look forward to continuing to interact with the Texas Tech law students, faculty, staff and alumni and to say a more personal goodbye before I move from the Hub City to the Windy City."
Dickerson earned her bachelor's and master's degrees from the College of William & Mary and received her law degree from Vanderbilt University. She serves on the executive committee of the Association of American Law Schools, is an elected member of the American Law Institute, a Sustaining Life Fellow of the Texas Bar Foundation and an inaugural member of the Texas Tech University School of Law American Inn of Court. She also serves on the Texas Supreme Court's Commission to Expand Civil Legal Services and the Council of the State Bar of Texas's Appellate Section.
During dean Dickerson's time at Texas Tech Law, the production of faculty scholarship has increased along with article placements in top-50 and top-100 law reviews. She increased the diversity of the full-time and adjunct faculty and developed several programs to benefit students, including the Bar Preparation Resources Program, the Regional Externship Program, the Academy for Leadership in the Legal Profession and the Innocence Clinic.
She led the effort to create both a public service graduation requirement and a flex-time scheduling option for law students. She also launched several student wellness initiatives and revitalized the alumni association. As a past president of Scribes – The American Society of Legal Writers, Dickerson was instrumental in Texas Tech Law becoming the organization's national headquarters.
Under Dickerson's leadership, Texas Tech University School of Law's moot court program has been ranked No. 1 in the country by the Blakely Advocacy Institute, and the school's legal-writing program was ranked 15th in U.S. News & World Report.
"Working with Dean Dickerson has been a tremendous honor," said Ashley Langdon, Texas Tech Law director of alumni relations and 2011 graduate. "Her energetic leadership and passion for the law are inspiring. I will miss her early morning emails, and I bet she will miss our mild Texas winters. I wish her luck in Chicago."
The Texas Tech School of Law is a leader among Texas law schools with a 16-year average pass rate of 90 percent on the State Bar Exam.
A small student body, a diverse faculty and a low student-faculty ratio (15.3:1) promotes learning and encourages interaction between students and professors.