Emory Report
June 6, 2005
Volume 57, Number 32


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June 6, 2005
Alexander steps in as interim dean

BY Eric Rangus

Frank Alexander, professor of law, has been named interim dean of the School of Law, Provost Earl Lewis announced May 26. His term begins today, Monday, June 6.

“After consultation with members of the law school community, alumni of the law school and members of the broader community, it was clear that Frank was the ideal person to lead the school as it prepares for the next permanent dean,” Lewis said in a statement.

“I am deeply honored to serve as the interim dean of the Emory School of Law pending the arrival of our new permanent dean,” said Alexander, who joined the faculty in 1982. “I view this service as an opportunity to return to the law school the blessings it has given to me for over 20 years.”

As Alexander moves into the dean’s chair, an 11-person committee of faculty, staff and students, chaired by School of Medicine Dean Tom Lawley, has been formed to begin the search for a new, permanent dean.
Alexander has long been one of the law school’s leaders in teaching, research and the creation of innovative programming. The same year Alexander came to Emory, he founded the Law and Religion Program, which he currently co-directs with John Witte. Over his 23 years of faculty service, Alexander has won many teaching awards and University honors, including an Emory Williams Award in 1991 and the Student Bar Association Award (as the “Professor Who Best Exemplifies the Ideals of the Legal Profession”) an unprecedented eight times. This past year he was the University Distinguished Faculty lecturer.

In addition to his teaching, Alexander his published more than 30 articles. His most recent book, the fourth edition of Georgia Real Estate Finance and Foreclosure Law, was published in 2004.

Recently, Alexander’s work has focused on affordable housing, urban redevelopment and state and local government law. He is director of the Project on Affordable Housing and Community Development. Part of the Law and Religion Program, the project assists local governments and nonprofits throughout the country in areas such as property tax liens and tax foreclosures, predatory lending, and affordable housing.

“Though it’s my hope that my tenure as interim dean will be brief, I look at the coming months as a precious opportunity to build even greater momentum upon the strong foundation of the strategic plan that Dean Arthur and the faculty have so carefully crafted over the past year,” Alexander said. “The coming year will be an opportunity for us to celebrate our rich heritage, current strengths, and our vision for the future. As a community we can and will move forward toward that vision.”

Citing a desire to return to teaching and research, Arthur’s resignation as law dean was announced April 21. He was named dean in June 2002 and has spent 23 years on the law school faculty in all. He will remain in residence at the law school, and Alexander said Arthur will assist him as needed.

Alexander earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill in 1973, and in 1978 he graduated from Harvard with law and master of theological studies degrees.