School Directory

Deans

Darby Dickerson Photo

Darby Dickerson
Dean

Dean Darby Dickerson reports directly to the JMLS Board of Directors. Dean Dickerson oversees the entire law school operation; all other deans and many department heads report directly to her. She is also engaged in a wide variety of external activities, such as fundraising, alumni relations, relations with other schools and community organizations, and relations with law-school organizations, such as the Association of American Law Schools and the American Bar Association's Section on Legal Education and Admission to the Bar. The Dean's Chief of Staff is Sharon Cannon; her Administrative Assistant is Tim Oravec.

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Arthur Acevedo
Associate Dean for Research & Faculty Development

Professor Arthur Acevedo is the Associate Dean for Research & Faculty Development. Associate Dean Acevedo supports faculty development by helping to plan and implement regular teaching effectiveness workshops in consultation with the Faculty Affairs Committee and by providing mentoring to junior faculty members. He also fosters faculty research by overseeing the faculty’s use of research assistants, by administering summer research stipends, and by funding faculty travel to conferences to present the results of their research. After the integration with UIC is complete, Associate Dean Acevedo will also serve as the focal point for interdisciplinary research projects undertaken between faculty at the law school and faculty from other colleges within UIC.

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Ramsey Donnell
Associate Dean for the Law Library & Information Services

As Associate Dean for the Law Library & Information Services, Ramsey Donnell directs the Louis L. Biro Law Library and the Law School’s Information Technology Services and Educational Technology departments. Through management of these departments, he oversees law school information technology and services, law library resources and services, and technical and instructional design support for distance education at the Law School. He reports to the Dean and works closely with senior administrators and faculty committees at the law school to plan and implement solutions that advance the Law School’s program of legal education and business operations. He also reports to UIC's University Librarian on matters related to library integration and works with counterparts at ACCC and AITS on technology integration projects.

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Rodney Fong
Associate Dean for Academic Achievement, Program Assessment & Bar Preparation

As Associate Dean for Academic Achievement, Institutional Assessment & Bar Preparation, Associate Dean Rodney Fong oversees the academic support programs from 1L Orientation through the bar exam, including direction of academic support staff, oversight of programs for students with academic challenges, and coordination of the Expert Learning and bar preparation courses. For institutional assessment, Associate Dean Fong directs a staff who assess student progress towards achieving the law school’s student learning outcomes. He works closely with the Dean, Student Services, and faculty.

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Margaret O'Mara Frossard
Associate Dean for Professionalism & Career Strategy

Margaret O’Mara Frossard, Associate Dean for Professionalism & Career Strategy, works with the Dean, faculty, and members of the Career Services Office to help students and graduates develop a strong professional identity as responsible, dignified members of the legal community. She also supervises the Office of Career Services, and the Director of Career Services reports to her. The Associate Dean implements programs for students to develop career related skills. She facilitates job placement for students and graduates by enlisting members of the legal community, including judges, practitioners and alumni to help with the placement process. Additionally, the Associate Dean meets with hundreds of students and graduates who are required to amend or update character and fitness information in order to help them achieve their goal to become licensed practitioners.

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Samuel V. Jones
Associate Dean for SCALES & Inclusive Excellence

Associate Dean Sam Jones is the Associate Dean for SCALES & Inclusive Excellence. As such, Associate Dean Jones is the primary academic officer for the Summer College to Assess Legal Education Skills (SCALES). Associate Dean Jones reports directly to the dean and is responsible for the design and supervision of the SCALES program. In so doing, Associate Dean Jones oversees the development and operational management of the SCALES curriculum, course offerings, scheduling and grading process, post-SCALES mentoring process, and recruitment and professional development of SCALES faculty. Associate Dean Jones is also one of the Dean’s chief advisors on inclusion. As such, Associate Dean Jones works closely with the Dean and Vice Dean for Academic Affairs in developing and overseeing strategic and operational policies that enable the law school to identify, recruit, and retain diverse students and faculty. Associate Dean Jones works closely with various faculty committees, and is responsible for collecting, tracking, analyzing, and presenting data related to diversity and inclusion initiatives, the law school climate, and for facilitating academic programming and support efforts to strengthen and sustain an inclusive and welcoming campus climate for law students.

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Joseph Kearney
Assistant Dean for Strategic Initiatives

Assistant Dean for Strategic Initiatives Joseph Kearney is responsible for working with the Dean and other senior administrators to oversee and facilitate a broad range of projects that relate to the Law School’s strategic goals and accreditation. He collaborates closely with senior Law School and University leadership to develop processes and systems to ensure that the Law School meets important reporting obligations. As he did for two years before the Law School joined UIC, he works across a variety of departments and University units to help facilitate the integration of the Law School into UIC.

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Tania A. Luma
Assistant Dean for Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

Assistant Dean Tania Luma promotes principles of diversity, equity, and inclusion through institutional strategic planning, diversity programming and training, student support, recruitment, and community partnerships. She works closely with the law school's administration, faculty, and students to foster an institutional culture of respect and empathy for all members of the law school community. Assistant Dean Luma reports directly to the Dean. After the law school integrates with UIC, Assistant Dean Luma will also work with UIC to collaborate on diversity initiatives, policies, and programming.

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Jennifer Pope
Assistant Dean for Student Life & Leadership

Dr. Jennifer Pope has been the Assistant Dean for Student Life & Leadership since Fall 2017, having previously worked in student affairs and international affairs leadership positions with undergraduate, graduate, and professional schools. Assistant Dean Pope’s primary responsibility is to support students outside of the classroom by connecting them to resources, creating professional development opportunities, advancing student-centered policies, and promoting a safe, welcoming, and inclusive campus community. Her team of student life professionals also facilitates disability accommodations, student activities, diversity initiatives, counseling, and holistic student wellness. Associate Dean Pope is happy to meet with students to discuss individual needs and ways of enhancing the collective John Marshall student experience.

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David E. Sorkin
Associate Dean for Academic Programs

As Associate Dean for Academic Programs, Associate Dean David Sorkin works with the Vice Dean for Academic Affairs and other administrators and faculty committees to administer the law school’s academic programs, including the JD program and curriculum, course scheduling, and academic advising. Associate Dean Sorkin supervises or has primary responsibility for the Centers for Excellence, graduate (non-JD) programs, international programs, honors programs, and endowed and funded events. Additionally he supervises the adjunct faculty, including applications, appointment, teaching assignments, and training, and works with the Adjunct Faculty Committee and center directors to review adjunct faculty performance. Associate Dean Sorkin also works with other administrators to ensure compliance with institutional and external policies, standards, and reporting requirements.

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Julie Spanbauer
Vice Dean for Academic Affairs

Vice Dean Julie Spanbauer oversees all matters related to the Academic Services Office, including exam administration, exam rescheduling, registration, professor teaching assignments, and class schedules for each semester and summer term. Vice Dean Spanbauer is available by appointment in her office throughout the academic year and summer and in the Boilerplate Café as scheduled prior to each registration period to provide academic advising to any student seeking advice about a course schedule, graduation requirements, good academic standing, the mandate program, or any other academic or curricular question. Together with the professor assigned to teach a course, she resolves all student requests for waiver of law school attendance requirements and all requests for a course grade of incomplete. Vice Dean Spanbauer is responsible for final resolution of all grade appeals, which can be generally initiated after a student has completed an exam or grade review with the professor who awarded the grade. Vice Dean Spanbauer responds to all student complaints related to faculty (other than Title IX complaints). Vice Dean Spanbauer is responsible for the initial processing of all student discipline matters. Vice Dean Spanbauer also conducts faculty evaluations with the Dean and serves as the Dean’s designate in the Dean’s absence or as assigned by the Dean.

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Chanté Spann
Assistant Dean for Admissions

Associate Dean Chante Spann leads John Marshall’s Office of Admission, where she develops and implements recruiting strategies to attract talented students to the law school. Associate Dean Spann is responsible for admissions and scholarship award processes and works with the Faculty Admissions Committee and administration to set admissions policies. She supervises a team of dedicated admissions professionals in the delivery of services and counseling to prospective, admitted, and matriculated students.

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