Essary Named Dean of the Norman Adrian Wiggins School of Law

Campbell University President, Dr. Jerry M. Wallace, has announced the appointment of Professor Melissa Essary as the next Dean of the Norman Adrian Wiggins School of Law. In making the announcement on Thursday, March 2, President Wallace was joined by Campbell trustees Harold Wells, Fred Taylor, Bob Barker, Ray Bryan and Clyde Rhyne. Commenting on the appointment, President Wallace said, “We are extremely pleased that Professor Essary will be joining the University as Dean of the Law School. She brings a distinguished academic record from the highly-regarded law school at Baylor. Although Professor Essary invested much of her energy in the Law School, she was very engaged in the total life of Baylor University. She is an extraordinarily talented individual whose range of skills will, no doubt, propel the school upward from its already significant achievements.” Essary is a 1982 summa cum laude graduate of the University of Texas at Austin. In 1985, she earned the Juris Doctor from Baylor University School of Law graduating magna cum laude. As a student at the Baylor University School of Law, Essary served as Executive Editor of the Baylor Law Review. Following graduation, she served as a trial lawyer for two Texas firms, most notably the prestigious ‘Vinson and Elkins’ firm of Dallas. In 1990, she came to the faculty at Baylor where she has served with great distinction, teaching courses primarily in Employment Discrimination Law and Torts Law. She is a well-decorated professor, having garnered in 2001 Baylor’s Outstanding Tenured Teacher Award, and a well-published and popular scholar in demand with audiences throughout the legal profession. In commenting on the position, Professor Essary acknowledged the tremendous opportunity before her in leading the School of Law. She said, “From the moment I set foot on campus, I was attracted to all that Campbell Law School is and can be in the future. Faculty, staff, students and alumni are rightly proud of the high quality of student-centered training at the law school, and I intend to spread the word. The law school is poised not only to build on historic areas of strength, but to identify new opportunities for success. I’m excited to be part of Campbell’s future.” Voicing praise for Essary was Campbell Provost, Dr. Dwaine Greene, who chaired the six-member dean search committee. He stated, “The committee realized quickly the breadth of Professor Essary’s talents. We are delighted that in a leadership position her gifts will now be blended with the other talented professionals already in the school. Her potential for passionate, energetic, and creative leadership bodes well for Campbell law students, faculty, alumni, and other professionals.” Professor Essary is especially proud of her family. Her husband, Larry, is a skilled individual in his own right, and currently serves as the Director of the Casey Computer Center of Baylor’s Hankamer School of Business. The Essarys are the proud parents of two daughters, Amber and Rachel. They currently are members of the Harris Creek Baptist Church. Professor Essary will assume her new duties at Campbell University on July 1, 2006. Founded in 1887, Campbell University is a private, coeducational institution of the liberal arts, sciences, and professions offering undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral degrees. The University is comprised of the College of Arts and Sciences, the Norman Adrian Wiggins School of Law, the Lundy-Fetterman School of Business, the School of Education, the School of Pharmacy and the Divinity School. Campbell University was ranked in the top tier of Best Universities in the South offering master’s degrees by U.S. News & World Report in its America’s Best Colleges 2006 edition and named one of the “100 Best College Buys” in the nation by Institutional Research & Evaluation, Inc.. Campbell University is affiliated with the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina.

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