AP NEWS

South Texas College of Law names Michael F. Barry new president, dean

April 4, 2019

Michael F. Barry, the assistant dean at St. Mary’s University School of Law in San Antonio, has been named president and dean of South Texas College of Law in Houston.

“The school is a very successful and strong institution, and I’m looking forward to working with the staff, faculty, students and alumni,” said Barry, who will officially become the 11th president of the private downtown Houston law school on Aug. 11, four years ahead of its centennial.

His focus, he said, will be to continue the law school’s mission of ensuring that its diverse student body receives an excellent education that prepares them to adapt to a changing legal market and landscape. Another goal will be to see to it that students pass their bar exams and obtain meaningful employment, Barry said.

“My responsibility is to ensure that the entire organization continues to serve our students, our alumni and our community, and ultimately, the buck stops with the president and the dean to make sure that we’re doing that,” Barry said.

Donald J. Guter, who has served as dean and president for the past decade, said in a statement that he is confident in Barry, describing him as a “proven and successful leader, businessman, and scholastic innovator.”

“His impressive track record of integrity, leadership, and ingenuity will serve STCL Houston and its students well as they approach the law school’s 100th year of excellence in legal education,” Guter said.

Barry, who earned a law degree from Yale School of Law, worked at St. Mary’s for years, serving as dean and practitioner in residence. There, Barry designed and spearheaded several initiatives, including “Law Success,” a three-year program that aims to help students excel in law school, on the bar exam and in practice. He created a database that has tracked student performances and identified strengths and weaknesses to provide tailored programs.

Barry previously worked for legal and corporate companies such as financial services company USAA, for which he served as senior vice president and deputy general counsel, and Capital One Services, where he served as director, assistant general counsel, and associate general counsel while also teaching as an adjunct professor of law at University of Richmond in Virginia.

“We look forward to implementing his forward-thinking ideas and strategic plans as we build on the strong foundation established by President and Dean Guter,” J. Ken Johnson, chairman of the South Texas College of Law Houston board of directors, said in a statement.

brittany.britto@chron.com