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Legislative Affairs Chief Weich To Be Named Baltimore Law Dean
Posted By Elizabeth Murphy On April 25, 2012 @ 11:58 am In News | Comments Disabled
Ronald Weich, Assistant Attorney General for Legislative Affairs, is leaving the Justice Department to become dean of the University of Baltimore School of Law.
Weich is an unorthodox choice for the position, given his lack of experience in academia. He’s spent most of his career on Capitol Hill, previously serving as chief counsel to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and counsel for the late Sen. Edward Kennedy (D-Mass.) and former Sen. Arlen Specter, when the Pennsylvanian was still in the Republican party. Weich also worked in private practice as a partner with Zuckerman Spaeder LLP. He began his career as an assistant district attorney in New York City. The Assistant Attorney General is a graduate of Columbia University and Yale Law School.
An “outside the box” choice is just what the university is looking for, professor Michele Gilman, who chaired the search committee for a new dean, told  the Baltimore Sun. ”When you talk about a non-traditional candidate in the abstract, it sounds risky,” Gilman told the Sun. “But when we met Ron in person, those concerns were ameliorated.”
Weich is slated to begin as dean in July with a salary of $352,000. The position has been vacant since former dean Phillip Closius resigned after a bitter battle  with the administration over law school spending.
“Certainly, I’m aware of the history, but I’m not unduly concerned,” Weich told the Sun, pointing to his past in politics as an advantage in healing wounds from last year’s resignation.
Last month, Weich made headlines after expressing concerns  that GOP staffers were leaking sensitive Justice Department documents to the press. Weich wrote a letter to Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) and Sen. Charles Grassley (R-Iowa) saying the department is “deeply disturbed” that documents related to Operation Fast and Furious, a botched gun-tracing investigation in Mexico, made it into the news after being turned over to members of Congress.
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