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Mississippi College Names New York University Law Graduate Wendy Scott as New Law Dean

Wendy Scott

Dr. Lee Royce—the president of Mississippi College—announced that Professor Wendy Scott will serve as the new dean of Mississippi College School of Law (MC Law) effective August 11, 2014.

A graduate of Harvard University and New York University School of Law, Wendy Scott will make history as the first African-American to serve as dean at the Mississippi College School of Law. This summer, Scott becomes the 8th law dean at MC Law, which became part of the Christian university in 1975. Mary Libby Payne broke ground as the first woman to lead the law school, with Professor Scott now the second woman to hold that distinction.

Scott will succeed Dean Jim Rosenblatt, who helped build the regional and national reputation of the law school in Jackson over the past 11 years. Rosenblatt will become a full-time professor at the private law school in August.

Scott has taught at the North Carolina Central School of Law since 2006, where she served as associate dean for academic affairs from 2009 to 2012. She previously taught at Tulane Law School in New Orleans for 17 years and served as vice dean for academic affairs. While teaching at Tulane, Scott was active in community service - from the Christian Bible Fellowship Ministries to the New Orleans Human Relations Commission. MC President Lee Royce commended the career accomplishments of Scott who has taught Constitutional Law, Civil Procedure, Evidence, Native American Law, and Women and the Law. Her scholarship has focused on constitutional theory and school desegregation. Her work on the desegregation of public colleges and universities has been widely cited. She is also active in the Association of American Law Schools.

Early in her career, Scott did employment law as a staff attorney at the Legal Action Center of the City of New York, worked as an associate at Vladeck, Waldman, Elias & Engelhard in New York City, and directed litigation as the associate counsel for the Center for Law and Social Justice, a community law office in Brooklyn, New York. She has been an adjunct professor at Hunter College, Brooklyn Law School, and CUNY Law School.

“Professor Scott brings a lifetime of exceptional service to the position, having distinguished herself as a lawyer, teacher, legal scholar and administrator,” Dr. Royce said. “We are so pleased to have someone so well known and respected in the legal academy provide leadership for our law school.”

Scott has also faithfully served in a number of positions with Baptist institutions, alongside her husband Reverend Eddie Scott. The incoming MC Law dean and her husband are the parents of a 15-year-old son, Christian. Royce noted, “Wendy Scott is an excellent fit for the Christian mission of Mississippi College.”

Dr. Royce commended the work of the Dean Search Committee led by Mississippi College General Counsel and Vice-President for Advancement Bill Townsend. “It was gratifying for me to see all segments of the Dean Search Committee so enthusiastically support the candidacy of Professor Scott. Our committee members representing the faculty, students, alumni, community, administration and staff were confident that Professor Scott had the qualities, experience, energy, personality, and commitment to lead MC Law in this era of legal education.”

MC leaders began a national search for a new law dean after Rosenblatt announced that after 11 years he was ending his tenure as dean to join the faculty. During his tenure as dean, there's been more than $10 million of facility improvements to the vibrant Baptist-affiliated law school whose modern, attractive campus sits one block from the state Capitol and the Mississippi Supreme Court.

In recent years, the MC School of Law enjoyed success in the advocacy arena and sent 26 moot court teams to regional and national competitions. The law school’s mission is truly global with overseas study programs in Germany, France, Mexico, Cuba, China and South Korea. MC Law has also instituted an LLM program in American Legal Studies for international attorneys and established an Executive Program that allows students to attend law school part time while working. The law school offers the only course of study in Civil Law outside of Louisiana.

MC Law has created a series of Centers to allow its faculty and students to focus their interests in Children and Family Law, Litigation and Dispute Resolution, International and Comparative Law, Bioethics and Health Law, Business and Tax Law, and Public Interest Law. The law school has also created two award winning web sites to allow the public access to the workings of Mississippi’s appellate courts and the Mississippi Legislature.

In addition, MC Law has reached out to serve the legal needs of low-income residents in inner city Jackson with a legal aid clinic and hosted televised debates to keep citizens better informed about key political races. Rosenblatt commented, “Professor Scott has the background and interest to tie MC Law’s legal education mission with community initiatives to promote social justice and to provide practical learning opportunities for its law students.”

“MC Law has what any dean would want.” says Scott. “MC Law has a talented faculty, exceptional students, a hard working staff, dedicated alumni, an attractive facility and a supportive university administration. I look forward to working with all of the constituents of the Law School to continue providing an excellent educational experience to our students and service to the people of Mississippi.”

Dr. Royce and other members of the Mississippi College family believe Scott will be an enormous asset to the law school in the heart of Mississippi’s capital city. “We look forward to her fine leadership of the law school.”