The University of Cincinnati put its dean of the College of Law on administrative leave on Wednesday shortly after blaming deficit-closing efforts for angering faculty members who organized against their leadership.
Dean Jennifer Bard was on leave after just 21 months on the job. Peter E. Landgren, provost and interim senior vice president of Cincinnati for Academic Affairs, announced the move in an email to the College of Law community saying he is setting a transition plan for college. He said his decision followed a “thorough evaluation process,” said the email posted by TaxProf Blog.
Bard was surprised by the move and is considering her legal options, she told The Cincinnati Enquirer in a statement. She said the law school had improved its throughput, fundraising, reputation and number of applicants under her leadership.
The development comes shortly after efforts to get Bard’s removal by a group of at least nine of the approximately 40 faculty members of the UC College of Law became public. The Cincinnati Business Courier received emails back in November 2016 from faculty members discussing a vote of no confidence in Bard. Bard signed a six-month plan in January to restore mutual trust and respect with the faculty.
Bard had said she angered a small group of faculty members while making progress in closing a multi-million dollar deficit at the College of Law, and that faculty members tried to stop them by taking advantage of a leadership vacuum created by interim leaders was created at the university. Controversial savings proposals included consolidating the UC legal library into the university library system, pre-approving travel, and presenting travel receipts. Bard was hired to fill a law school deficit, she told the Business Courier in a statement this week.
Bard was hired as Dean of Law School on a five-year contract in 2015. She was the provost’s special assistant for academic engagement at Texas Tech University, where she directed the university’s JD / MD program and the health law concentration program.