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Thursday, March 21, 2013


UNLV President Neal Smatresk announced today that Daniel W. Hamilton has been selected as the third dean of the William S. Boyd School of Law. Hamilton, associate dean for faculty development and professor of law and history at the University of Illinois College of Law, will start July 1, 2013.

“Dan Hamilton will bring with him his sterling record as a scholar, his exceptional experience as a teacher, and his experience in working with faculty, students and alumni,” said UNLV Executive Vice President and Provost John Valery White, who preceded Hamilton as law school dean.

Hamilton received a Ph.D. in American legal history from Harvard University, a J.D. from George Washington University and a bachelor's degree from Oberlin College. An elected member of the Board of Directors for the American Society for Legal History, Hamilton was a Golieb Fellow in Legal History at New York University School of Law, has been a visiting scholar at the American Bar Foundation, and served as past chair of the Legal History Section of the Association of American Law Schools.

Hamilton says the Boyd School of Law’s talented faculty, dedicated staff, and engaging student body drew him to apply.  “I am extremely proud to become the third dean of the William S. Boyd School of Law, and I’m looking forward to continuing Boyd Law’s tradition of excellent teaching, outstanding scholarship and active engagement with the academy and the community,” Hamilton said.

Hamilton researches and writes primarily on American property ideology and the legal and constitutional issues during the Civil War.  He has written numerous articles and reviews on American legal history, with works in Civil War History, the Chicago-Kent Law Review, the Journal of Supreme Court History, the Journal of American History, the Journal of Southern History, the Journal of Interdisciplinary History, the Journal of National Security Law, and the Law and History Review.  His book, The Limits of Sovereignty: Property Confiscation in the Union and the Confederacy During the Civil War, was published in 2007 by the University of Chicago Press.

Hamilton succeeds John Valery White, who moved from the deanship of the William S. Boyd School of Law to the position of Executive Vice President and Provost at UNLV in 2012. Nancy Rapoport, Gordon Silver Professor of Law at UNLV, served as interim dean during the search.

The Boyd School of Law has been among U.S. News & World Report’s top 100 law schools in the nation for seven consecutive years and this year achieved its highest-ever ranking. The school ranked 68th nationally overall, third in legal writing program, and 11th in the dispute resolution.