Texas Tech Officials Announce Interim Dean of Law School
June 7, 2010
Officials at Texas Tech University announced that Susan Saab Fortney
, associate dean for research and faculty development, will become the interim dean
of the Texas Tech School of Law effective July 1. Fortney also is a Horn Professor
of Law and director of the school’s Health Care and Bioethics Mediation Clinic.
The announcement came June 4 from Provost Bob Smith.
“Susan is the ideal person to assume the interim deanship in the School of Law,” Smith
said. “She is an outstanding administrator-teacher-scholar who has the utmost respect
of the law faculty, students and staff.”
Walter Huffman, dean of the law school, announced in June 2008 that he would be stepping
down but would remain on the school’s full-time faculty teaching national security
law and related topics.
“I am deeply honored to serve.” Fortney said. “Dean Walter Huffman has inspired
us all and I look forward to taking the baton.”
Prior to joining Texas Tech’s law school faculty, Fortney practiced law in both the
public and private sectors. She first served as briefing attorney for Chief Justice
Carlos Cadena of the Fourth Court of Appeals of Texas. She continued her public service
as an attorney with the Division of Corporation Finance and the Division of Enforcement
at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Fortney later entered private practice,
handling securities and corporate matters. She developed an expertise in business
and coverage litigation, principally handling legal malpractice and directors and
officers liability cases.
Fortney’s teaching and research focuses on legal ethics and malpractice. She has
co-authored the nation’s first textbook on legal malpractice. Fortney has also conducted
numerous empirical studies on law firm governance, work systems and ethics.
In 2005, Fortney received the Texas Tech University President’s Academic Achievement
Award for excellence in teaching, service and research. In 2006, she received the
Chancellor’s Distinguished Teachers Award, the highest teaching award in the university.
In 2007, she was given the law school’s Distinguished Researcher Award and was elected
as a member of the American Law Institute. She also is an elected member of the American
Bar Foundation and Texas Bar Foundation. In 2008, she was identified by Texas Lawyer
as one of the 30 extraordinary women in Texas law. In 2009 she was selected to serve
as the law school’s first associate dean for research and faculty development and
as an adjunct professor in the Texas Tech Health Sciences Center Department of Psychiatry.
The Texas Bar Foundation recently selected her as the 2010 recipient of the Lola Wright
Ethics Award in recognition of outstanding public service in advancing and enhancing
legal ethics in Texas.
CONTACT: Susan Saab Fortney, interim dean, School of Law, Texas Tech University,
(806) 742-3990 ext. 233, or firstname.lastname@example.org.