University Law Prof. Risa Goluboff has been appointed to serve as the dean of the Law School. She will be the first female dean of the Law School.
Following the approval of her appointment by the Board of Visitors, Goluboff will begin her term July 1, 2016.
Goluboff will succeed Dean Paul Mahoney, who started his term in 2008. Mahoney will return to the faculty of the Law School and to full-time teaching and research, he said in an email statement.
Goluboff earned her B.A. from Harvard, a master’s and Ph.D. in History from Princeton and her J.D. from Yale Law School. She came to the University in 2002 after clerking for two years for Judge Guido Calabresi and Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer.
Among other accomplishments, Goluboff has received the Order of the Coif Award for best book in the legal field, a Fulbright Scholarship and the All-University Teaching Award.
Tom Katsouleas, University executive vice president and provost, said Goluboff is a premier scholar of legal history.
“She is one of the leading scholars on the national landscape, and arguably the leading scholar of her generation in legal history,” Katsouleas said.
Goluboff has been a professor in the Law School for 13 years and has taught classes in constitutional law, legal history and civil rights history, among other topics. She also has several appointments in three other departments at the University, including as director of the joint J.D. master’s in History program, a collaboration between the Law School and the College graduate school, Goluboff said.
As dean, Goluboff said she is looking forward to developing connections both within and outside the University.
“I’m looking forward to deepening our relationships with our alumni and our supporters, deepening our relationships with the rest of the University, and being a model of legal education generally — not just within the University, but outside of it as well,” Goluboff said.
There has been societal criticism of law schools recently, Goluboff said, and she hopes to show the value of a legal education in creating life-long careers.
“One of my goals is to articulate what value law schools provide, not just to themselves and to their students, but to the larger society and to the public interest,” Goluboff said.
Overall, Goluboff said she is honored by her appointment and excited to assume her position in July.
“I think our law school is an exceedingly happy place and I’m happy to be at the helm of it, and I think there’s a lot of joy in leading a place like U.Va.,” she said.