The First Woman Dean of Yale Law School

The first woman dean of Yale Law School

Yale University has announced that Heather Gerken will become the 17th dean of Yale Law School on July 1. She will be the first woman to serve as dean of the law school, which is rated as the nation’s best by U.S. News & World Report.

Professor Gerken is the J. Skelly Wright Professor of Law at Yale and is the director of the San Francisco Affirmative Litigation Project. She joined the Yale faculty in 2006 after teaching at Harvard Law School for six years. Earlier, she was a clerk for Justice David Souter at the U.S. Supreme Court.

In accepting the appointment as dean, Professor Gerken said, “Yale Law School is a remarkable institution, one that has trained the finest lawyers in the country for generations. It embodies the best in practice and in theory, a rare combination. The Yale Law School community has always drawn strength from its diversity and its deep commitment to the values of the profession. I am thrilled to take on this role and hope to build on that legacy as we train a generation of lawyers and academics to meet the challenges of the 21st century.”

Professor Gerken is a summa cum laude graduate of Princeton University and currently sits on the university’s board of trustees. She earned her law degree at the University of Michigan.

Filed Under: MilestonesNewsProfessional Schools


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