Campus News

Faculty appointments expand law school’s global presence


Published February 28, 2013

Meredith Lewis.

Meredith Lewis

Two UB Law School faculty members have taken on expanded roles as the school works to extend its presence worldwide, as well as regionally and nationally.

Dean Makau W. Mutua, a well-known scholar in the area of international law, has named Professor David A. “Bert” Westbrook as director of the law school’s global strategic initiatives and Associate Professor Meredith Lewis as director of the Canada-U.S. Legal Studies Centre.

The appointments were effective Feb. 1.

David Westbrook.

David Westbrook

In his new administrative role, Westbrook is responsible for exploring the development of a wide range of global strategic initiatives for the law school. These include initiatives in curriculum, international student recruitment, student study-abroad and exchange programs, and faculty involvement, including faculty exchanges with peer schools abroad. Also under consideration is a possible expansion of the school’s presence in international ventures in New York City and Washington, D.C.

Westbrook also is overseeing the UB Law School’s master of laws program, which draws practicing attorneys from throughout the world to pursue specialized study at the law school, and is chairing the Committee on Graduate and International Programs.

Mutua notes that Westbrook’s work will dovetail with the university-wide UB 2020 strategic planning initiative.

Westbrook, the Floyd H. and Hilda Hurst Faculty Scholar at the UB Law School, teaches on business and international topics, including basic courses in corporations, contracts and international law. His most recent scholarly book is “Deploying Ourselves: Islamist Violence and the Responsible Projection of U.S. Force” (Paradigm Publishers). A graduate of Harvard Law School, he joined the UB Law School faculty in 1998.

Founded in 1989, the Canada-U.S. Legal Studies Centre integrates Canadian legal issues into the UB Law School by coordinating its activities with those of research groups, faculty initiatives and student organizations. As director, Lewis is responsible for refocusing and expanding the center’s mandate to align it with emerging law school planning and scholarly priorities.

“UB’s location on the border creates inviting opportunities to create synergies with colleagues in UB and across the border in a variety of initiatives, including international trade law,” Mutua says. “Meredith brings a wealth of experience to this position, having co-founded and served as associate director of the New Zealand Centre for International Economic Law at the Victoria University of Wellington Law School.

Lewis, whose law degree is from Georgetown University Law Center, joined the UB law faculty in 2012. She teaches and writes in the area of international trade law.