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GW Law School dean named president of Brandeis University

GW Law School Dean Frederick Lawrence will leave the University this winter, after he was named the eighth president of Brandeis University, University President Steven Knapp announced Thursday afternoon.

Lawrence – who has served as dean of the law school since August 2005 – will assume the position as the president of Brendeis in January 2011, according to a University press release. He will serve in his position as a dean at GW through the fall semester.

“While Kathy and I are saddened to say goodbye to the Law School community, we leave with wonderful memories, a wealth of knowledge and experience, and enduring friendships. We are forever grateful for our time at GW and to each person who makes this time so extraordinary,” Lawrence said in a news release. Kathy, Lawrence’s wife, is a professor in the English department at GW.

Lawrence is credited with being a successful fundraiser for the Law School, which had five of its most successful fundraising years under Lawrence’s watch, despite a tough economic climate.

“Since his arrival at our university in August 2005, Fred Lawrence has been a truly transformational dean and an exemplary university citizen.  Brandeis will be well served by Fred’s exceptional qualities as a leader, administrator, and educator,” Knapp said in a statement to the University community.

Lawrence succeeds Brandeis President Jehuda Reinharz, who served in the position for more than 16 years.

“Fred Lawrence is an acclaimed educator, an expert on civil rights, and a proven leader with the ability to inspire the entire Brandeis community. He is committed to the core values of academic excellence and social justice so essential to all that is Brandeis. He understands financial issues, has strong fundraising skills, and connects on a very personal level with the university’s heritage and its mission,” said Chairman of Brandeis’ Board of Trustees Malcolm Sherman.

Brandeis University is located in Waltham, Mass., near Boston. It is ranked ahead of GW in the U.S. News and World Report rankings, taking the No. 31 spot. GW is ranked No. 53.

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