Law school contract gives donor a say in selection of new dean

November 10, 2007 Under terms of his contract, a major benefactor for the new University of Irvine, California, law school could have been consulted about the selection of a dean, but he was not and had nothing to do with the clumsy way that Erwin Chemerinsky was hired, fired and rehired, officials and documents say. With little explanation, Chemerinsky, a renowned legal scholar, was in, out and back in again as the law school's founding dean. Faculty and legal observers had speculated that Chancellor Michael Drake initially reneged on the offer to Chemerinsky because of opposition from Donald Bren, who donated $20 million to the school.

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