Dec 9, 2020

Dear colleagues,

L. Song Richardson, Dean and Chancellor’s Professor of Law, has notified Chancellor Gillman and me that she has accepted a position as president of Colorado College, effective July 1, 2021.

Since her arrival at UCI in 2014, Dean Richardson has dedicated her expertise to fostering an innovative and diverse environment where scholars thrive on cutting-edge research and hands-on opportunities, throughout the campus and in the community. At the time of her appointment as dean in 2018, she was the only woman of color to lead a top 30 law school. Under her leadership, the Law School excelled in rankings and is No. 27 overall in the U.S. News & World Report ranking of best law schools. Additionally, UCI Law is the No. 1 most diverse law school among the top 30 (No. 9 overall) in U.S. News & World Report law school diversity index. Dean Richardson also established the UCI Law Committee on Equity, Diversity and Inclusion and appointed the Law School’s first Associate Dean for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion and first Assistant Dean for Student Affairs and Inclusive Excellence.

Dean Richardson led the Law School on its mission to develop graduates who are committed to public service and are advocates for inclusive excellence. She led extensive interdisciplinary efforts to address the novel legal questions raised by artificial intelligence and emerging technologies, specifically their impact on social justice, ethics, and individual rights. Through her leadership, the Law School incorporated these issues across the curriculum and now UCI is one of a few law schools in the country addressing the impact of artificial intelligence and emerging technologies curriculum-wide, including first-year classes. During her tenure, the School also launched its Graduate Tax Program as well as UCI Law in New York City, an innovative program supporting students interested in exploring career paths in New York.

The Law School increased fundraising during Dean Richardson’s tenure, including strengthening its relationships with local and national foundations and establishing eight new endowed student scholarships.

We will conduct a national search for a successor and discussions with the faculty will begin shortly. My office will initiate consultation with faculty and staff to appoint an interim dean during the transition period.

Please join Chancellor Gillman and me in thanking and congratulating Dean Richardson for her service to UCI and wishing her well in her next role.


Hal S. Stern, Ph.D.
Interim Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor
Chancellor’s Professor, Department of Statistics