In January, a new Dean for the WU College of Law was announced— Amelia Smith Rinehart. She is the associate dean of academic affairs and professor at the University of Utah S.J. Quinney College of Law. Her appointment at WVU Law will begin June 30.  
In the formal announcement made by WVU Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs Maryanne Reed, the following comments were made– “From her childhood in rural Louisiana to her role as a problem solver and innovator at the University of Utah, Amelia Smith Rinehart has honed the ideal vision to make our College of Law a leader in 21st century legal education and an engine for progress and equity throughout West Virginia, WVU President Gordon Gee said.” (Gee is a Bar Foundation Fellow.)  
“She is both an engineer and lawyer by training and practice, as well as an academic leader who values cross-disciplinary collaboration, community engagement and stewardship,” Reed said. “We look forward to seeing how she brings her entrepreneurial and innovative spirit to WVU to help advance the College of Law for future generations.”  
“I am honored and beyond excited to join the West Virginia University College of Law and the WVU family during these momentous times,” Rinehart said. “The College of Law has a reputation for exemplary faculty, high-achieving students and alumni, and innovative programs that further its mission to excel, to lead and to serve. I look forward to working with President Gee; Provost Reed; the College of Law faculty, staff, students, and alumni; and all of our WVU community members to help the College of Law rise to the challenges that we face in legal education today. Working together, I’m confident that we will thrive in our pursuit of excellence and service and do so committed in every way to our Mountaineer values.”  
Professor John Taylor served as interim dean of the College of Law since July 2020 and will return to the faculty in July 2021. “We are grateful for and appreciative of Professor Taylor’s steadfast leadership this year, especially given the challenges that the COVID-19 pandemic presented,” Reed said. “I know he will continue to serve the law school faculty and the University throughout the spring semester and ensure a successful transition to Professor Rinehart’s leadership.”   Interim Dean Taylor is a Bar Foundation Fellow and currently serves on the Bar Foundation Board of Directors.  
The Bar Foundation and its Board of Directors congratulates incoming Law School Dean Amelia Smith Rinehart and looks forward to working with her to improve the important work being accomplished at the WVU College of Law.