Boyer Stepping Down As Dean of UB Law School

By Arthur Page

Release Date: May 13, 1998

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Barry B. Boyer, dean and professor of law in the University at Buffalo School of Law, has announced his intention to step down as dean at the end of July.

Boyer, who has served as dean since 1992, has been a member of the UB faculty since 1973. He was associate dean for academic affairs in the law school and director of the Baldy Center for Law and Social Policy prior to being named dean.

A long-time environmental activist and author on developing clean-up plans for local waterways, Boyer will remain a member of the law faculty. A professor of environmental law, he will resume full-time teaching duties in the areas of natural resources, the Great Lakes, law and epidemiology, and law and nature. He also will oversee the law school's continuing technological development.

In a letter acknowledging the dean's intentions, Provost Thomas E. Headrick praised Boyer for his efforts as dean.

"You have guided the school through a major change in its program and its finances, and greatly strengthened the school's ties with its alumni and supporters," Headrick said. "In addition, you have positioned the school internally to enhance its competitive stature and reputation externally. You will leave the deanship with a record of great accomplishment under your leadership."

As dean, Boyer was involved in the formation and implementation of a new curriculum designed to counter the widespread concern that law schools are not adequately preparing their graduates to practice law. The new UB law curriculum, which was put into place in 1994 and is now fully implemented, blends practical and analytical skills to produce graduates who are better able to research, understand and translate information into legal work products, such as divorce settlements, loan agreements and briefs.

Headrick has named Judge Barbara Howe of the New York State Supreme Court, Eighth Judicial District, to head a search committee for a new dean.

"My strong inclination is to look within the faculty for the next dean," Headrick said.

"The school is in an excellent position, internally and externally. It has a well-defined mission and has set goals which the faculty and staff support and are working toward with continuing success. There is no great need for a catalyst for change that is often the justification for tapping an external candidate."

According to Howe, search-committee members are consulting extensively with faculty, students, staff and alumni to identify the needs of the law school and the characteristics and qualifications desirable in the new dean.

Boyer received a bachelor's degree from Duke University and a law degree from the University of Michigan School of Law. He is the recipient of numerous professional awards, including the Environmental Law Section Award from the New York State Bar Association, which is given to individuals who make noteworthy contributions to the environment of New York State.