Maureen O’Rourke, a professor of intellectual property and commercial law and dean ad interim since 2004, has been named the new dean of the School of Law. Her appointment was announced to the faculty on Thursday, May 11, by President Robert A. Brown and Provost David Campbell.
“Maureen has already demonstrated her leadership abilities during her exemplary service as dean ad interim,” says Brown. “She brings to Boston University the intellectual strength, inclusiveness, and energy needed to lead the school forward into the first rank of American law schools.”
O’Rourke, who arrived at the University in 1993 after a law career at IBM, holds a bachelor of science in computer science and accounting from Marist College and a law degree from Yale. She became a full professor at the University in 1998, associate dean of administration in 2001, and associate dean for academic affairs in 2003.
She won a Metcalf Award for Excellence in Teaching, one of the University’s highest teaching honors, in 2000; in nominating her for the award, students called her knowledge of the Uniform Commercial Code “stunning” and described her as “dynamic, knowledgeable, rigorously logical, and extremely well organized.”
The search committee, led by Dean of Arts and Sciences Jeffrey Henderson, consisted of LAW faculty, students, and alumni, with the search firm Auerbach Associates engaged to assist in the process. The committee was convened in January to conduct a national search, and O’Rourke was selected from a pool of five finalists.
“Maureen will give our fine law school what it most needs from a dean at this stage in its development: a clear strategic plan, effective fundraising, improved alumni relations, competent administration, solid leadership both inside and outside the school, and good esprit de corps,” says Henderson. “Boston University is fortunate to have someone of Maureen O’Rourke’s stature and ability in this important deanship.”