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Villanova Law Establishes New Endowed Chairs Recognizing Leadership and Scholarship

michelle dempsey and doris brogan

Villanova, Pa. – Mark C. Alexander, The Arthur J. Kania Dean of Villanova University Charles Widger School of Law, announced the establishment of two endowed faculty chairs – and appointed two esteemed faculty members to these newly established positions. Doris DelTosto Brogan ’81, Professor of Law has been named the Harold Reuschlein Leadership Chair.  Michelle Madden Dempsey, Professor of Law has been named the first holder of the Harold Reuschlein Scholar Chair.

Serving to recognize distinguished teacher-scholars, the selected faculty are leaders dedicated to the University and Law School’s values and mission. The Chairs will serve to model the importance and synergy of the three major aspects of exemplary faculty life—teaching, scholarship and service—to the Law School.

“Doris and Michelle stand out as epitomes of the blend of scholar, teacher and leader that our chairs should embody,” said Dean Alexander. “Each of them reflects the values and dedication that are vital to the health and growth of our community. I am thrilled to have them on our faculty as examples of the kind of lawyers and leaders we aspire to train at the Law School.”

Professor Brogan graduated from Villanova Law magna cum laude in 1981 and joined the faculty in 1983. She has published on privacy, defamation, ethics, conflict of laws and domestic relations, including a recent article on “Expungement, Defamation, and False Light: Is What Happened Before What Really Happened or is There a Chance for a Second Act in America?” in the Loyola University Chicago Law Review. She also serves on the Board of the Pennsylvania Innocence Project, chairs the Board of the Riverbend Environmental Educational Center and serves on the Grants Committee of the Radnor Educational Foundation. At Villanova Law, Professor Brogan served as Associate Dean for Academic Affairs for 17 years, and as Interim Dean from 2009-2010.

Professor Dempsey joined the Villanova Law faculty in 2009 after teaching at the University of Oxford, England as a University (CUF) Lecturer in Law and Tutorial Fellow. She earned her DPhil (PhD) in Jurisprudence from Oxford, an LLM with Distinction (Highest Honors) from the London School of Economics, and her JD from the University of Michigan. She is a renowned scholar on topics including criminal law theory, moral philosophy, feminist legal theory, sex crimes and domestic violence. Professor Dempsey has been published in leading legal journals including University of Pennsylvania Law Review, Modern Law Review and Oxford Journal of Legal Studies. She is also the co-founder of the Villanova Law Institute to Address Commercial Sexual Exploitation.

Funding for the new positions come from the Harold Reuschlein Endowed Fund, which was established by a group of alumni in honor of the Law School’s founding Dean, Harold Gill Reuschlein.  

About Villanova University Charles Widger School of Law: Founded in 1953, the Villanova University Charles Widger School of Law provides broad-based legal education that is grounded in academic rigor, practical hands-on training and a foundation in business that prepares graduates for diverse and rewarding legal careers. The Law School, which is accredited by the American Bar Association, offers six in-house clinics and more than 150 externship opportunities that immerse students in the real-world application of their legal skills. Villanova is home to Centers of Excellence—the Eleanor H. McCullen Center for Law, Religion and Public Policy; the David F. and Constance B. Girard-diCarlo Center for Ethics, Integrity and Compliance, the John F. Scarpa Center for Law and Entrepreneurship; and the Jeffrey S. Moorad Center for the Study of Sports Law—which provide students the opportunity to pursue innovative, interdisciplinary legal fields through study, practical experience and mentorship.