Mary Lu Bilek is dean of CUNY School of Law, where she began teaching as one of the founding faculty in 1985. As a faculty member, associate dean, and interim dean, she led initiatives promoting student-centered instruction, developing and implementing CUNY Law's innovative curriculum for practice, creating a robust bar support program, and spearheading programs that have increased the diversity of the legal profession, including the school's innovative Pipeline to Justice Program.

In 2012, Dean Bilek was appointed dean of the University of Massachusetts School of Law, charged to lead the state's new and only public law school to full accreditation. Under her leadership, UMass Law strengthened its access and public service missions, moved steadily towards accreditation, increased applications, improved its in academic credentials, and increased its student diversity.  The law school also launched the Justice Bridge Legal Center, a law incubator that supports graduates in solo practice serving clients of modest financial means.

Dean Bilek serves on the board of the National Center for Law and Economic Justice and served as a SALT Board member. She served on the Massachusetts Access to Justice Commission and the Board of Directors of the Massachusetts Legal Assistance Corporation. She is a member of the Council on the Profession, the Task Force on the Civil Right to Counsel, and the Committee to Enhance Diversity in the Profession at the Association of the Bar of the City of New York.

Dean Bilek serves as an ABA Site Visit Team leader, has served on the ABA Special Committee on the Professional Education Continuum, and chaired the Section on Legal Education Diversity Committee, as well as serving on LSAC's Diversity Committee.  She co-authored Twenty Years After the MacCrate Report: A Review of the Current State of the Legal Education Continuum. She was named one of the "Most Influential People in Legal Education" by The National Jurist.

She presents regularly on issues related to the future of legal education, diversity in legal education, the bar examination, access to justice, legal incubators, and legal pipeline programs.

Dean Bilek earned her B.A. summa cum laude from St. Mary's College, Notre Dame, Indiana and her J.D. cum laude from Harvard Law School. She practiced law for five years with the firm Paul, Weiss before first joining CUNY Law.

Mary Lu Bilek


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