Yale Law School has named its first female dean.
University officials announced Tuesday that Yale Law professor Heather Gerken, 48, will assume the deanship on July 1, replacing outgoing dean Robert Post. Gerken will be the first woman to lead the 193-year-old law school, which holds the No. 1 spot on U.S. News & World Report’s law school rankings.
“Yale Law School is very lucky to be able to draw on the energy, brilliance, and leadership of Heather Gerken,” Post said in an announcement of her appointment. “This is a time of change in the nation and in legal education, and Heather is perfectly situated to take the helm of this extraordinary place. She has the entire confidence of the school.”
Beyond New Haven, Connecticut, legal academics who know Gerken are praising her selection.“She’s brilliant and she’s a mensch,” said Rick Hasen, a professor at the University of California, Irvine School of Law who, like Gerken, is an expert in election law.
“There are people in the world who are whip smart and always impress you with their intellect, and there are people in the world who are kind, thoughtful and considerate. Heather is the rare person who combines both. I expect she will be an excellent dean.”
Congratulations to Yale!