Lonnie T. Brown ’89 named dean of the University of Tennessee College of Law

Jan 19, 2022

Lonnie T. Brown Jr., Class of 1989, has been named dean of the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, College of Law and Elvin E. Overton Distinguished Professor of Law. He begins July 1.

Brown is currently the Josiah Meigs Distinguished Teaching Professor and holds the A. Gus Cleveland Distinguished Chair of Legal Ethics and Professionalism at the University of Georgia School of Law. During his tenure on at the University of Georgia, he has served as associate dean for academic affairs for the law school and as an administrative fellow in the office of the senior vice president for academic affairs and provost for the University of Georgia.

Brown joined the Georgia Law faculty in 2002 after serving as an assistant professor at the University of Illinois College of Law from 1999 to 2002. His scholarly research focuses on legal ethics in the adversary system. He has also written a biography of former U.S. Attorney General Ramsey Clark, Defending the Public’s Enemy: The Life and Legacy of Ramsey Clark (Stanford University Press, 2019) and is a co-author of the fourth edition of Professional Responsibility: A Contemporary Approach (West Academic, 2020).

He is an elected member of the American Law Institute. He also serves as the vice chair of the Drafting Committee for the Multistate Professional Responsibility Exam and is a member of the ABA Standing Committee on Ethics and Professional Responsibility. He is also a member of the ABA’s Center for Professional Responsibility and the Association of Professional Responsibility Lawyers.

He was a visiting assistant professor at Vanderbilt Law School in 1998.

He was an associate with Alston & Bird in Atlanta from 1991 to 1998 and a partner from 1998 to 1999.

University of Tennessee Provost and Senior Vice Chancellor John Zomchick said Brown brings distinguished credentials as a legal scholar and an excellent background in academic administration to his new role. “Lonnie has an outstanding record of leadership in legal education. He brings to our College of Law a commitment to prepare the lawyers of tomorrow and engage with our communities. I look forward to working with Lonnie and his colleagues to make UT College of Law a destination for those seeking an excellent legal education.”

“I am thrilled and honored to have been chosen as the Tennessee College of Law’s dean,” said Brown. “I look forward to being a Volunteer and working with the faculty, staff, students and alumni to continue attracting and educating the future leaders of our profession and broader community.”

Brown received a bachelor’s degree in English from Emory University in 1986. In summer 1985 he studied Shakespeare at University College, Oxford University. He was a law clerk for Judge William C. O’Kelley of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia after earning his J.D. at Vanderbilt.


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