Ken Wildes at (215) 898-8721

For Release: Wednesday, Oct. 7, 1998, and after

University of Pennsylvania Law Dean Colin S. Diver to Return to the Law Faculty After a Decade of Service

PHILADELPHIA -- Colin S. Diver, who has been Dean of the University of Pennsylvania Law School for nearly a decade, will resign as Dean of the Law School, effective June 30, 1999, according to an announcement today (Oct. 7) by University President Judith Rodin.

Mr. Diver, 54, will continue as a professor of law at Penn.

"I love this job and I love this school," Mr. Diver said in a letter to Dr. Rodin. "I still wake up every morning looking forward to a day of challenge and learning, and I go home every night feeling a sense of accomplishment.

"But, as I approach the tenth anniversary of my appointment, I also feel a sense of completion," he said, "as if a natural cycle in my own career and in the life of the school were coming to an end.

"By the conclusion of the current academic year, I will have accomplished the goals I set for myself in 1989 -- to expand and strengthen the faculty, to rebuild the school's physical plant and to make Penn a national model for both interdisciplinary legal education and public service," he said. "In the year 2000, the school will celebrate its sesquicentennial and will begin its second century on the West Philadelphia campus. A new cycle will begin; new challenges will call forth new energy and new ideas."

"Colin Diver has done an outstanding job," Dr. Rodin said, adding that the University of Pennsylvania Law School "is very much stronger in virtually every respect today than it was" a decade ago. "It is with much appreciation, but with deep regret," she said, "that we accept his decision, and, while his considered opinion will be missed on the administrative level, we are very pleased that our students will be the beneficiaries of his considerable background and experience, wisdom and great strength as a member of the faculty."

Dr. Rodin said that Mr. Diver's "immense contributions" include increasing and strengthening the faculty, improving the physical plant and access to technology, fundraising, developing the academic program, nurturing the public service program and working to attract some of the "most able" students in America and around the world.

Strengthening the Faculty

The standing faculty at the Law School has increased from 28 to 37 and is expected to increase to 40 during the current academic year; 14 members of the current faculty were appointed in the past nine years, with appointments recruited from prestigious public and private universities throughout North America, including the University of California at Berkeley, Georgetown University, the University of Michigan, McGill University (Canada), Vanderbilt University and Yale University. Interdisciplinary study has been a focus of the faculty recruitment, with 10 of the 14 appointments having formal academic background in cognate studies -- economics, history, philosophy or sociology -- at the master's or doctoral level.

The quantity and quality of faculty research productivity has improved as measured by recent studies, and the number of endowed faculty chairs has increased from 11 to 17.

The funding base for the Institute for Law and Economics, considered one of the most prestigious in America, has been strengthened, and the Institute for Law and Philosophy has been established, reflecting the Law School's pre-eminence in legal theory and jurisprudence.

Physical Plant and Technology

The facilities available to students and faculty at the Law School have doubled in the past decade, including the construction of Nicole Tannenbaum Hall, which opened in 1993 and includes the Biddle Law Library, space for three student journals, four new classrooms, students lounges and administrative areas.

William Draper Lewis Hall, which includes renovated space for the Gittis Center for Clinical Legal Studies, three new classrooms, a mock trial room and administrative areas, has been renamed Silverman Hall in recognition of a $15 million gift -- the largest ever to an American law school --from Henry R. Silverman (L '64). The second phase of the renovation will include complete restoration of the exterior of the building and the 34th Street entrance, renovation of the Segal Moot Courtroom and creation of the Paul and Karen Levy Conference Center, made possible by a $2 million gift from Paul S. Levy (L '72) and his wife, Karen.

Students and faculty at the Law school now have state-of-the-art services provided through new departments of Information Technology Services and Media Technology.


More than $100 million in new gifts and pledges has been raised in the past nine years, including $30 million for current use, $35 million for construction and renovation of facilities and $35 million toward the endowment.

Academic Programming

Strategic academic planning, with an emphasis on leadership and service, has led to interdisciplinary associations with selected other professional schools at Penn, including six-year "sub matriculation" programs between the Law School and the School of Arts and Science, the School of Engineering and Applied Science, the Wharton School and the School of Nursing.

The Law School also has added a joint JD Doctor/Masters Degree Program in Bioethics, offered with the School of Medicine; a Certificate in Public Policy Program, offered with the Wharton School; and joint JD/Ph.D. Degree programs in philosophy and history, offered with the School of Arts and Science.

The clinical legal education and legal research and writing programs have been strengthened with new faculty positions and with new clinical programs in Advanced Civil Practice and Legislation.

The programs in international, foreign and comparative law also have been strengthened, with the addition of faculty committed to comparative legal studies. Enrollment in the LL.M program for foreign-trained students of law has doubled, from 35 to 70, and a new summer program for LL.M candidates now provides training in American legal research and writing, an introduction to the American legal system and instruction in the English language.

Public Service Program

Penn has implemented what has been considered "the most ambitious and highly-regarded" public service program in American legal education in which all students enrolled in the JD degree program must perform at least 70 hours of public service work in approved placements supervised by lawyers. Since 1990, more than 2,000 Penn students have performed more than 175,000 hours of public service .

Quality of the Student Body

The quality of the student body has increased, with an increase in the median and average LSAT scores, from 165 to 166, and now at the 96th percentile. Student recruitment activities are considered a model for other law schools.

Resources for student financial aid have increased; the average grant-per-student at Penn has gone from among the lowest among top-tier law schools to average among those schools.

Mr. Diver had been associated with Boston University for 14 years and was professor of law and Dean of the School of Law at Boston University, with a secondary appointment as professor of public management in the School of Management, prior to his appointment at Penn in 1989.

He was a visiting associate professor at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University in 1979-80.

Mr. Diver served the Commonwealth of Massachusetts as Undersecretary in the Executive Office for Administration and Finance (1972-74) and Assistant Secretary in the Executive Office of Consumer Affairs (1971-72) prior to his appointment at Boston University in 1975.

Mr. Diver was Special Counsel to the Mayor of the City of Boston from 1968 to 1971.

Mr. Diver is a member of the executive committee of the American Law Deans Association (1995-present), a member of the Harvard Law School Visiting Committee (1994-present) and a trustee of the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law (1992-present). He has been a member of both the Supreme Court of the Pennsylvania Historical Society (1992-96) and the West Philadelphia Collaborative Program for Child Health Advisory Board (1992-95).

Mr. Diver has been a consultant to numerous organizations, including the Administrative Conference of the United States, the U.S. Department of Justice, the U.S. Department of Transportation, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

Mr. Diver received a bachelor's degree, summa cum laude, from Amherst College in 1965. He received an LL.B degree from Harvard University in 1968, where he was associate editor of the Harvard Law Review (1966-67).

He was awarded an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from Amherst College in 1990.


(Posted 10/07/98)

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