Bench & Bar

JAN 2018

The Bench & Bar magazine is published to provide members of the KBA with information that will increase their knowledge of the law, improve the practice of law, and assist in improving the quality of legal services for the citizenry.

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Page 27 of 75

| JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2018 26 I t is with sadness and gratitude for a life well lived that the Brandeis School of Law announces the death of Dean Bar- bara Buchanan Lewis on Nov. 7, 2017. She was 79 years old. Lewis was the first female law dean at the University of Louisville, serving in that position from 1982-1990. After she left the dean's office, she returned to the fac- ulty until her retirement in 2006. Even after retirement, she continued on as an adjunct professor until 2014. Linda Ewald, a retired professor at the Brandeis School of Law and an associate dean under Lewis, provides information about Lewis' life and career: Lewis earned bachelor's and J.D. degrees from the University of Louisville, a master's in education from Tennessee Technological University and a Master of Law and Tax- ation from the Marshall Wythe School of Law at the College of William and Mary. Before her career in legal education, Lewis worked as an attorney for the U.S. Corps of Engineers, as a probation officer for the Jefferson County Juvenile Court and as a teacher in Honduras and Guatemala. Her true passion was the law and educa- tion, and following her graduation from William and Mary, she taught at Cumber- land School of Law and the University of Oklahoma College of Law, where she also served as chair of the faculty senate and as interim dean. Lewis was a trailblazer in legal education. She was one of only a handful of women students in her law school class, and at the time she was named dean at UofL there were only five other women law deans nationwide. During her tenure as dean, she built bridges within the community and the profession and served on a number of boards, including the Center for Women and Families, the Department of Public Advocacy, the Louisville and Kentucky Bar Foundations, the League of Women Voters, the ACLU and Citizens for Better Judges. As dean, and later as a professor, she worked tirelessly to promote diversity in the law school and the profession. While Lewis enjoyed the challenges of the deanship, she missed daily contact with stu- dents. In 1990 she returned to pursue her passion, classroom teaching. Mostly, she taught tax. When asked why anyone would teach tax, she would respond with, "I just love the Internal Revenue Code." As a professor, she was tough, demanding and had no patience with slackers. She felt strongly about the importance of atten- dance, preparedness and promptness. She was a stickler for all three. Lewis expected students to be respectful, responsible, collegial and professional. Students who complained about the difficulty of the tax code or the length of an assignment gener- ally got the same response from her: "Life is tough." On occasion, she was known to make the same observation in faculty meetings. Despite the heavy demands Lewis placed on students, and the fact that some students found her a bit intimidating, she cared deeply about them personally and about their professional success. When she announced her retirement in 2006, the Student Bar Association created a special teaching award in her honor and recognized her at graduation. roughout her career she received many awards for her leadership and community service, but the awards she received from the University of Oklahoma and the University of Louisville for excellence in teaching were the ones she valued most. IN MEMORIAM: DEAN BARBARA BUCHANAN BY: DEAN LARS SMITH Barbara Lewis loved the law and she was devoted to her students. Several years ago, upon receiving a Kentucky Bar Association Award, she said, "I have always thought that to be a lawyer is a great calling. It is a great service, and to teach lawyers is great privilege." She embraced the calling, served the com- munity and profession with distinction and taught her heart out every single day. A life well lived. She will be missed. Don Burnett, who was dean of the Brandeis School of Law from 1990-2000, shared this reflection of Lewis: Dean Lewis (it took a while for me to call her Barbara, although she welcomed it, and always used it when signing notes to me) was a pioneer. When she became the law dean at the University of Louisville, only a handful of America's law schools, which totaled approximately 170 at the time, had women in the dean's office. e times were COLUMNS

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