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July 13, 2017

Law Dean William Carter Jr. to Return to Full-time Faculty Next Year

William M. Carter Jr.

William M. Carter Jr.

University leaders commended the success in recognition and growth of Pitt’s School of Law achieved under the guidance of Dean William J. Carter Jr. at the announcement of his decision to step down from his role as the dean, a role he has held for six years, and return to the faculty at the end of the 2017-18 academic year.

“Under Dean Carter’s leadership, Pitt Law has seen its national rankings rise and its academic scope expand in key areas, like cyber law and health care compliance,” said Chancellor Patrick Gallagher. “These successes speak to Chip’s lasting impact, and I am thankful that he will continue to serve our students — and our School of Law — when he returns to our faculty next year.”

“It has been my pleasure to work with Dean Carter, both in his role as dean and as a member of our Council of Deans,” said Provost and Senior Vice Chancellor Patricia E. Beeson. “I am pleased that he will continue as a faculty member here at the School of Law.”

Graduate employment rates and the school’s recognition rose under Carter’s tenure. The school was recently ranked 37th in graduate employment rates at the nation’s largest law firms, according to a 2017 report by The National Law Journal. It is also ranked 50th for scholarly impact in a 2015 study.

Carter also oversaw the school’s establishment of six new legal clinics and practicums, providing experiential opportunities for students to learn more about the practice of law. The Institute for Cyber Law, Policy, and Security; the Energy Law and Policy Institute; the Pitt Legal Services Incubator and Health Care Compliance Online Graduate Certificate Program were all established during Carter’s tenure.

Applications to the school increased by about 15 percent from 2013 to 2017 during a time when applications to law schools across the country significantly declined. The percentage of underrepresented racial minorities on the full-time faculty during that time more than doubled.

Total philanthropic giving has also increased substantially during Carter’s service, totaling more than $20 million to date, including two new endowed professorships and the Derrick A. Bell Fund for Excellence, which provides student scholarships and faculty research support in civil rights and public interest law. The School of Law also received the largest single scholarship endowment in its history.

“It has truly been an honor and pleasure to serve as dean,” said Carter. “I look forward to advancing our mission with the utmost energy during my final year of service as dean and beyond.”

A search committee to find Carter’s replacement will be formed in the coming weeks.

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