Professor Leonard M. Baynes Named New Dean of University of Houston Law Center
I’m pleased to announce that Professor Leonard M. Baynes has been named Dean of the University of Houston Law Center. Len is an exceptional teacher and a nationally recognized communications law scholar, specializing in race and media issues. As the inaugural Director of The Ronald H. Brown Center for Civil Rights and Economic Development at St. John’s, he has built the premier academic center for diversity initiatives in legal education. More generally, embodying our Vincentian mission, Len has worked tirelessly to open doors to an inclusive and diverse legal profession. Along the way, he has consistently dedicated himself to changing the face of the legal profession one student at a time.
Len’s contributions have been well recognized. From 1997 to 2001, he was a Scholar-in-Residence at the Federal Communications Commission, where he served as a member of the Opportunity Team and worked on minority access and ownership issues. He continued this important work after joining the St. John’s Law faculty in 2002. In 2004, he was an expert witness at the Federal Communications Commission Federal Advisory Committee for Diversity in Broadcast Ownership. And in 2006, the Minority Media & Telecommunications Council inducted Len into its Hall of Fame, describing him as “a champion for diversity.” In 2010, he received the prestigious New York Bar Association’s Diversity Trailblazer Award and, in 2011, he accepted the American Bar Association’s Alexander Award on behalf of The Ronald H. Brown Prep Program for College Students, the first law school-based pipeline program to win this honor.
St. John’s has also recognized Len’s service and accomplishments by awarding him the President’s Medal. Len will be missed as a valued member of the St. John’s community and as a wonderful colleague and friend. But our loss will certainly be the University of Houston’s gain, and we wish him Godspeed as he takes this next step on his remarkable career path.