UW News

March 29, 2018

Mario L. Barnes named dean of the School of Law

UW News

Mario L. Barnes has been named the next Toni Rembe Dean of the University of Washington School of Law, President Ana Mari Cauce and Provost Jerry Baldasty announced today. His appointment, set to begin July 5, 2018, is subject to approval by the UW Board of Regents.

Barnes currently is professor and senior associate dean for academic affairs at the University of California, Irvine, where he is recognized nationally for his research on the legal and social implications of race and gender, primarily in the areas of employment, education, criminal and military law. Barnes teaches courses in criminal justice, constitutional law, critical theories and national security law. He also holds a joint appointment in the department of Criminology, Law & Society, is a faculty affiliate in the Center in Law, Society & Culture, and is the co-director of the UCI Center on Law, Equality and Race. He previously served as associate dean for research and faculty development for the UCI School of Law.

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Mario BarnesSteve Zylius/UCI

In 2015, The National Jurist Magazine named him as one of 20 national leaders in furthering diversity efforts in legal education.

“With his expertise in and commitment to diversity and equity, President Ana Mari Cauce and I are very pleased that Professor Barnes has agreed to lead the UW School of Law, which is dedicated to solving problems and advancing social justice,” Baldasty said. “The School encourages students to pursue their deepest interests, as it integrates education and experiential learning.”

Prior to his academic career, Barnes spent 12 years on active duty in the U.S. Navy, including service as a prosecutor, defense counsel, special assistant U.S. attorney, and on the commission that investigated the 2000 bombing of the USS Cole in Yemen. His reserve assignments included service with the Naval Mine and Anti-Submarine Warfare Command in San Diego, the Navy Inspector General’s Office in Washington, D.C., and U.S. Special Operations Command in Tampa. He retired from the Navy in 2013, after 23 years of combined active and reserve service.

“As a person whose life has been transformed by the opportunities afforded by public research universities, I am excited and honored to be joining the UW community. I was immediately attracted to the law school’s access mission, impeccable academic programs, and deep commitments to public service, innovation, and inclusive excellence,” Barnes said. “I look forward to working with campus leadership and law school faculty, staff, students, and alumni to chart a way forward that ensures the institution will continue to produce practice-ready graduates who will have a local, national and global impact.”

Barnes earned both his bachelor’s degree in psychology and his juris doctorate from the University of California, Berkeley. He completed his master of laws at the University of Wisconsin. Before joining UCI in 2009, he was a faculty member at the University of Miami School of Law, where he was twice selected as the Black Law Students Association’s Outstanding Law Professor. He also served as a William H. Hastie Fellow at the University of Wisconsin Law School.