Duquesne University has named April Barton ’96 CWSL, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at Villanova University Charles Widger School of Law, as Dean of the Duquesne University School of Law following a national search. She succeeds the Honorable Maureen Lally-Green, who has served as Dean since 2017.
In her current role as Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, Barton oversees all areas of academic affairs and has successfully launched numerous initiatives on leadership development, including a student Lawyers as Leaders program and a new course, Leadership and Management Skills for Lawyers.
“Dean Barton is an alum of our law school and has been a valued member of our Villanova Law community for over 20 years,” Mark C. Alexander, The Arthur J. Kania Dean of Villanova’s Charles Widger School of Law, said. “She has been instrumental in launching our leadership initiative, including ‘Lawyers as Leaders’—a program that is near and dear to both of us. She leads with compassion, determination, an unwavering desire to help, and a strong analytical mind—all qualities necessary in a great leader. While I will miss her as part of my Dean’s Cabinet, I know that she will do a phenomenal job at Duquesne.”
Barton teaches courses on administrative rulemaking and leadership skills for lawyers. She also has taught classes on computer law, the First Amendment and regulation in cyberspace and digital law. She currently serves as Director of the JD/MPA program and previously served as Director of the University’s JD/MBA joint degree programs as well as Director of Academic Compliance and Distance Learning. Barton also served as Assistant Dean for Academic Computing and was the Faculty Director of the Global Democracy Project.
In addition to authoring Best Practices for Building a High-Tech Law School: The Process of Designing Educational Spaces published by the ABA’s Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar, Barton’s work has been published in the Washington University Law Review, and the Minnesota Journal of Law, Science and Technology. She has presented on and moderated discussions on innovations in law school teaching, law school distance learning, technology and classrooms of the future at Harvard Law School, New York Law School, the Gruter Institute, Carnegie Mellon and the National Association of Attorneys General and Appellate Chiefs, among others. Barton also has testified before the U.S. Congressional Commission on Online Child Protection and the European Commission for Democracy through Law, Venice Commission, in Brussels.
Barton also served as an attorney with the Federal Trade Commission’s Bureau of Consumer Protection in the Division of Marketing Practices, where she worked on policy and law enforcement issues related to internet fraud and deception.
Barton earned a J.D. from Villanova University, where she received the Herman Mitchell Schwartz Award, and a Bachelor of Science (cum laude) in physics from Moravian College. Barton is a member of the Pennsylvania Bar and the American Bar Association.