Toni Massaro Steps Down at Arizona

Toni Massaro, The Dean of the University of Arizona’s James E. Rogers College of Law, is stepping down to return to full time teaching.

Why is this significant?

Well, anytime a major shift of leadership occurs at a top 50 law school, it is worth noting. In all likelihood, a shift in admissions practices and policy will follow and make U of A a more unpredictable target school during the 2009 application period (which can be either good or bad). Additionally, Massaro was the first woman to serve as Dean of the College of Law and left a legacy of academic excellence and fund raising support that transformed U of A’s law school into an elite program.

However, in this instance, it is also interesting because Massaro is such a prominent legal scholar in the fields of constitutional and criminal law theory. Most memorably, Massaro has penned some of the most advanced articles and journals dealing with the concept of shaming penalties.

So if you enjoyed the episode of Curb Your Enthusiasm in which Larry David is forced to stand outside a restaurant holding a sign reading “I steal silverware from restaurants,” then you probably have Tony Massaro to thank.