Amy J. Wildermuth, associate vice president for faculty and academic affairs at the University of Utah, has been named dean of the School of Law, Pitt Provost and Senior Vice Chancellor Patricia E. Beeson announced this week. She will begin her deanship on July 1.
Wildermuth brings academic and administrative experience as well as legal expertise. She served as University of Utah’s first chief sustainability officer and as a professor in the S.J. Quinney College of Law. Her academic career has focused on areas of civil procedure, administrative law, environmental law and U.S. Supreme Court practice. She has represented several amicus curiae parties before the U.S. Supreme Court.
“When we set out to find the next dean for Pitt Law, we knew exactly what we wanted: a dynamic and visionary leader who could help us realize the full potential of Pitt Law during a time of tremendous change in the legal profession,” said Chancellor Patrick Gallagher. “Amy did more than just satisfy this ambitious requirement — she vastly exceeded it. I am thrilled that she has chosen the University of Pittsburgh and excited to watch Pitt Law continue to evolve and thrive under her watch.”
Provost Beeson said, “While a number of outstanding candidates emerged during our search, Professor Wildermuth is truly exceptional and uniquely qualified to serve as the next dean of the School of Law. I am confident that she understands the opportunities to move the school forward by both harnessing traditional strengths and building upon the assets of the larger University. She is unequivocally committed to enhancing legal education and will draw upon her administrative, research and practice experience to lead Pitt Law in its next phase of excellence.”
At the University of Utah, Wildermuth oversees all aspects of faculty affairs and development and assists with the administration, leadership and governance of the entire institution. As chief sustainability officer, she led the university’s efforts in that area, which included a university purchase of offsite renewable energy to supply 50 percent of the University of Utah’s electricity and several innovative community discount programs for solar and electric vehicles.
Wildermuth said she has been impressed from the beginning of this process by the many strengths of the University of Pittsburgh and the School of Law: "The faculty of Pitt Law are known for their important contributions to both legal education and scholarship. Its graduates have earned wide praise for being high quality and practice-ready lawyers from the moment they begin their careers. I am thrilled to have the opportunity to be a part of such an outstanding place and look forward to working with the entire Pitt community as we begin the next exciting chapter in the law school's history."
Wildermuth succeeds William J. Carter Jr., who last summer announced his decision to step down from his role as the dean of the law school, a role he has held for six years, and return to the faculty at the end of the 2017-18 academic year.
New rankings released this week by U.S. News & World Report show the law school’s overall ranking went up eight places this year from 82nd to 74th. It is ranked 20th nationally in health law and 27th nationally in international law.