The University of Georgia School of Law organized and hosted the inaugural Women’s Leadership in Academia Conference in July 2018 with the goal of advancing women professors, librarians and clinicians in leadership positions in the teaching academy. Conference programming focused on building skills and providing tools and information that are directly applicable to women in legal education looking to be leaders within the academy. All topics addressed the unique perspectives and challenges of women, and provided programming that was useful to developing leaders. View a photo gallery from the inaugural conference.

Schedule of events

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Wednesday, July 18th
7:00 PM

Book Club: "Through the Labyrinth"

Usha Rodrigues, University of Georgia School of Law

Hotel Indigo, Madison Bar & Bistro

7:00 PM - 8:30 PM

Organized by UGA School of Law faculty Usha Rodrigues with further discussion facilitated by UGA Law Library Director Carol Watson and Grants Coordinator Amanda Shaw. The group discussed the book Through the Labyrinth: The Truth About How Women Become Leaders by Alice H. Eagly and Linda L. Carle.

Thursday, July 19th
9:20 AM

Welcome from the Dean

Peter B. "Bo" Rutledge, University of Georgia School of Law

Hirsch Hall, Room A

9:20 AM - 9:30 AM

The University of Georgia School of Law's Dean delivers a welcome message to conference attendees.

9:30 AM

#MeToo and the Legal Academy

Sonja West, University of Georgia School of Law
RonNell Anderson Jones, University of Utah
Mary-Rose Papandrea, University of North Carolina School of Law
Dahlia Lithwick, Slate Magazine
Emma Hetherington, University of Georgia School of Law

Hirsch Hall, Room A

9:30 AM - 10:55 AM

This panel will explore the challenges and opportunities for American law schools in the wake of the #MeToo movement. Panelists — including constitutional law professors, current and former law school associate deans, a clinical professor specializing in sexual abuse, and a journalist who reported on sexual harassment within the judiciary—will consider the scope of the movement, the obligations of law professors and law school administrators, and the challenges facing law schools as they interact with students, faculty, judges, employers, the bar, and the community.

11:05 AM

Leadership Challenges and Solutions over the Course of a Career

Melanie Wilson, University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Paula Schaefer, University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Joy Radice, University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Larry Walker Room, Dean Rusk Hall

11:05 AM - 12:00 AM

This interactive workshop will focus on challenges faced by women in leadership roles and women aspiring to leadership roles in the legal academy. Each of the three leaders – a law school dean, a full professor, and a newly tenured professor who also directs the legal clinic – will present relevant research that participants will apply to two hypothetical situations and then in small groups engage in a discussion of concrete reforms.

12:00 PM

Lunch Address

Kellye Testy, Law School Admission Council

Larry Walker Room, Dean Rusk Hall

12:00 PM - 1:00 PM

President and CEO of LSAC delivers a lunch address to conference attendees drawing on her years of experience as a woman in academia and sharing advice for others in the field based on her years of service as dean of the University of Washington School of Law and president of AALS.

1:00 PM

Strategies for Conflict Management and Dialogue

Raye Rawls, Fanning Institute of Leadership

Larry Walker Room, Dean Rusk Hall

1:00 PM - 2:55 PM

Managing conflict is an essential leadership competency. This session focuses on thinking about conflict as an opportunity for change and connection. Participants will identify where conflict might occur on strategies for resolution, facilitation, and negotiation. In addition, facilitators introduce the concept of “bridging questions” and participants will practice creating questions that bridge two or more sides of an issue. Participants will gain the opportunity to understand her conflict management styles and strategies to use the best style in the right circumstance.

3:05 PM

Addressing Gender Disparities in Institutional Service Workloads

KerryAnn O’Meara, University of Maryland
Andrea Curcio, Georgia State University

Hirsch Hall, Room F

3:05 PM - 3:55 PM

Unrecognized implicit biases often result in women faculty members performing a disproportionate share of teaching, student mentoring and advising, and departmental and university service. This time-consuming work benefits the institution, yet it goes largely unrewarded. It also can negatively impact women faculty members’ career advancement because the time required to do this work takes time from other pursuits such as scholarship, or other leadership activities, that are more highly valued and rewarded. This presentation addresses these dilemmas and provides concrete solutions.

Dr. KerryAnn O'Meara is Professor of Higher Education, Director of the ADVANCE Program for Inclusive Excellence, Affiliate Faculty in Women’s Studies and Associate Dean for Faculty Affairs and Graduate Studies in the College of Education at the University of Maryland, College Park. KerryAnn's research examines faculty careers and academic rewards systems with a particular focus on organizational practices that support and limit the full participation of women and URM faculty and the legitimacy of diverse forms of scholarship in the academy. Dr. O’Meara will speak about her work to help faculties become more transparent about workload activities and her experience working with faculties to develop and implement organizational reforms to enhance workload equity.

Outside the Four Walls of the Law School: Law Faculty and Staff as Campus and University Service Leaders

Joan MacLeod Heminway, University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Hirsch Hall, Room C

3:05 PM - 3:55 PM

This session focuses on service leadership opportunities for law school faculty and staff outside the law school--elsewhere on campus or within the greater university (for law schools on campuses in university systems). Fundamentally designed to cover central why, what, when, and how questions a law school faculty or staff member may have about broader academic leadership opportunities, the session involves both formal presentation and audience participation and engagement.

4:00 PM

Academic Search Process Panel

Hari Osofsky, The Pennsylvania State University
Tim McFeeley, Isaacson, Miller
Lucy A. Leske, Witt, Kieffer

Hirsch Hall, Room A

4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

A recently appointed Dean and recruiters from top search firms will discuss the academic search process, provide insights and tips, and answer questions.

Friday, July 20th
9:00 AM

Keynote Address

Libby V. Morris, University of Georgia, Institute for Higher Education

Hirsch Hall, Room A

9:00 AM - 10:00 AM

Director of UGA's Institute of Higher Education, Interim Provost and Zell B. Miller Distinguished Professor of Higher Education speaks to attendees about taking leadership roles in academia and her life experiences with being a woman in higher education.

10:10 AM

Negotiation Strategies

Laura Rosenbury, University of Florida Levin College of Law
Hillary Sale, Washington University in St. Louis

Larry Walker Room, Dean Rusk Hall

10:10 AM - 11:50 AM

This session will explore the particular challenges women may face when negotiating salaries, leaves, course loads, and service and other administrative work. This is a skills-based workshop that will discuss how gender intersects with other aspects of identity and offer concrete exercises and strategies.

1:00 PM

Exploring the Value of Female Mentoring Relationships to Cultivate Law School Leadership

Lisa Bliss, Georgia State University
Jessica Cino, Georgia State University

Larry Walker Room, Dean Rusk Hall

1:00 PM - 1:55 PM

Mentoring is recognized as important to professional advancement and to cultivating leadership. While it is not uncommon for faculty to be in mentor-mentee relationships for teaching, scholarship, or professional development, pursuit of mentoring relationships in the context of legal education leadership may be less prevalent. This interactive session will explore mentoring frameworks and competencies. Participants will explore essential questions about mentoring from the perspective of the institution, the mentor, the mentee, and the relationship itself.

2:05 PM

Dean’s Panel

Usha Rodrigues, University of Georgia School of Law
Rebecca H. White, University of Georgia School of Law
Wendy Hensel, Georgia State University
Karen L. Abrams, Duke University

Hirsch Hall, Room A

2:05 PM - 3:00 PM

Former and current women deans share their experiences, offer guidance, and answer questions in this panel discussion.