LEGAL EDUCATION

Deputy elevated to top job at ABA legal education section

March 9, 2020

William Adams, who has served as deputy managing director of the Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar at the American Bar Association for 5½ years, has been promoted to managing director of Accreditation and Legal Education, the section’s top job.

William Adams, Managing Director of the ABA Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar, the sole national accreditor of U.S. law schools.

William Adams, Managing Director of the ABA Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar, the sole national accreditor of U.S. law schools.

American Bar Association photo

Adams will begin his new role April 6. He succeeds Barry Currier, who announced last August that he would be departing the post by the summer of 2020. Currier, who served as managing director since 2013, led the section’s governing body, the Council, through a series of changes in standards that enhanced accountability of the nation’s accredited law schools, particularly in terms of bar passage and job placement.

Like his predecessor, Adams is an experienced legal education administrator, having served as a dean, associate dean and professor of law in prior positions during the past quarter of a century. His appointment comes after a nationwide search that considered several candidates for the job.

“I look forward to following in the long tradition of managing directors who have ably assisted the Council in regulating legal education to assure that graduates of ABA-approved law schools are prepared to enter the practice of law,” Adams said. “I am honored to follow Barry Currier, who has performed this responsibility in a challenging time for legal education with integrity and foresight.”

Adams is a 1978 graduate of Indiana University Maurer School of Law. He is past chair of the Association of American Law Schools (AALS) Section on Aging and the Law, the AALS Section on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identify and the Florida Bar’s Public Interest Law Section. He is the 1994 recipient of the Dan Bradley Award, the National LGBT Bar Association’s highest award for contributions to LGBTQ equality.

The section’s council, which acts as an independent arm of the ABA, is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education as the sole national accreditor of U.S. law schools.

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