Yale Law School is back in the market for a dean. Robert Post, who has held the top job at Yale Law since 2009, announced this month that he will not seek a third term, stepping down as dean effective June 2017. He plans to return to the classroom, according to the Yale Daily News.
Yale President Peter Salovey told the college newspaper that a committee has been impaneled to search for Post’s replacement.
Post served a five-year term until 2014, when he was reappointed, by Salovey, to a second, three-year term. He will serve as dean through the current academic year. Neither Post nor Salovey could be reached for comment for this article.
FAMILIAR FACES ON SEARCH COMMITTEE
The committee tasked with finding Post’s replacement is composed of seven Yale Law faculty members, including Kate Stith, who chaired the Dean’s Review Committee that recommended Post’s reappointment in 2014. Yale Law professor Paul Kahn, who chaired the committee that selected Post for the deanship in 2009, will chair the replacement committee.
Other replacement committee members include Yale Law professors Stephen Carter and Amy Chua, a bestselling author.
Post, the school’s 16th dean, “will be leaving a very strong Yale Law School,” Stith told the Yale Daily News. In reappointing Post in 2014, Salovey said Post “was widely praised for his vision and leadership over the past five years,” adding that “he is valued by all as a wise colleague.”
The college newspaper mentioned Heather Gerken and John Witt, both current Yale Law professors, as possible replacements for Post. A recommendation is expected to be made to Salovey by the replacement committee by the end of the fall semester.
‘A GREAT JOB IN DIFFICULT TIMES’
Under Post, who graduated with his J.D. from Yale in 1977 and earned undergraduate and doctoral degrees from Harvard, Yale Law continued its unbroken streak at the top of the U.S. News law school ranking — a position the school has held since the ranking debuted in 1990. During his tenure he led the development of the nation’s first doctorate program in law, according to the Yale Daily News; the program’s inaugural class graduated in April 2016.
In 2013, Post secured a $25 million donation from Robert C. Baker and his wife, Christina Baker, that will help alleviate Yale’s law student housing crisis, which began in 2007 when Yale Law’s only dormitories in the Sterling Law Building were converted into academic and administrative spaces.
Post served as the David Boies professor of law from 2003 until 2009, when he succeeded former Dean Harold Hongju Koh. Prior to that, Post taught at the UC-Berkeley School of Law for 20 years.
“I think Dean Post did a great job in difficult times,” Yale Law student Omer Aziz told the college newspaper. “He was not a perfect dean, but at the end of the day, he marched with students after Eric Garner was killed and raised the amount of summer funding that students doing public interest work could get.”