The University of Pittsburgh School of Law has named Tomar Pierson-Brown as the school's inaugural Associate Dean for Equity and Inclusive Excellence, effective July 6, 2020. In this newly created role, Pierson-Brown will set the strategy for the Office of Equity and Inclusive Excellence (OEIE), working closely with the Director and Assistant Director of the OEIE, the Diversity Committee, and Pitt Law students.
"Prof. Pierson-Brown brings extensive experience and understanding of issues of representation, identity, and community collaboration to this new role," said Dean Amy J. Wildermuth. "She will be instrumental in helping us reach our strategic goal of ensuring that Pitt Law is accessible for, and inclusive of, everyone from the full spectrum of race, socioeconomic, ability, and cultural backgrounds. We are truly fortunate to have her in this new leadership position.”
Pierson-Brown is a Clinical Assistant Professor of Law and Director of Pitt Law's Health Law Clinic. Under her leadership, the Health Law Clinic operates as a medical-legal partnership with UPMC-Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh. She previously served as a Clinical Instructor and Supervising Attorney in the Juvenile and Special Education Law Clinic at the University of the District of Columbia – David A. Clarke School of Law. Prior to academia, she was an attorney with Children's Law Center in Washington, D.C., and an Equal Justice Works fellow with the Legal Aid Society of Cleveland.
Pierson-Brown received a J.D. from Case Western Reserve University School of Law, and an LLM in clinical legal education and systems change from the University of the District of Columbia – David A. Clarke School of Law.
"I am excited to lead Pitt Law's efforts to promote and maintain an inclusive academic environment. My goals for this position are to develop a law school culture in which all learners feel that their lived experiences are central to the process of knowledge construction and acquisition, and to promote the incorporation of practices which foster understanding and respect across embodied and ideological difference," said Pierson-Brown.
As a member of the law school faculty, Pierson-Brown will serve as a key connector between the goals and plans of the faculty and the OEIE and as the primary point of contact and decision making concerning diversity and inclusion topics. She will work closely with the Office of Admissions to actively support the recruitment of diverse students; engage with alumni and others in the community; support staff recruitment, retention, support, and education; develop and oversee internal and external programming; and provide additional student support as needed.
"I look forward," said Pierson-Brown, "to working proactively with student organizations, faculty committees, alumnae, and our administrative offices to nurture a culture of inclusion at Pitt Law."