William and Mary Law School

Associate Dean for Academic Affairs Ronald Rosenberg Named Chancellor Professor of Law

Professor and Associate Dean Ronald Rosenberg has been named a Chancellor Professor of Law.  Chancellor professorships recognize “distinguished service to the university in teaching, scholarship, or governance,” that has had a “profound impact on the quality of the academic life of the institution.”  Rosenberg will hold the professorship for seven years.  He joins Professors Lynda Butler and Fredric Lederer as the third Chancellor Professor on the faculty.

"Ron Rosenberg is a wonderful choice to serve as our newest Chancellor Professor of Law," said Davison M. Douglas, Dean of the Law School.  "He has played an important role in the Law School's international efforts for many years, expanding our L.L.M. program and forging relationships between William & Mary and other law schools around the world.  He is a respected scholar and teacher of environmental law and policy.  And he now serves as the Law School's Associate Dean for Academic Affairs."

Professor Alan Meese said he was thrilled to hear about Rosenberg’s Chancellor professorship. “Ron is fully committed to advancing the core academic mission of the Law School and the larger university through his teaching, scholarship and service.  He is a quintessential exemplar of academic integrity, and we are very lucky to have him in our intellectual community."

Rosenberg said he is “very honored that the Law School and the College have seen fit to give me this award. It is an incentive to working hard and to continuing to find new challenges.”

Rosenberg’s scholarship focuses on environmental law against the backdrop of communities and their development.  His work thus frequently involves local government, land use, and natural resources law. 

He holds both a J.D. and a Masters degree in Regional Planning from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and a B.A. from Columbia University. Before joining the William & Mary faculty in 1982, he served on the legal staff of the Environmental Protection Agency in Washington, DC, and was a Fulbright Senior Scholar in Taipei, Taiwan.  He is a frequent speaker on environmental and property issues, as well as the author of many books, including Controversies in Constitutional Law – Evolution of the Law of Takings and is co-author of Environmental Policy Law.

In addition, he has published numerous articles in prestigious journals such as the Duke Law Journal, Journal of Local Government Law, and the Annual Survey of American Law on topics covering a wide range of environmental law and related constitutional and property issues.  An article on renewable energy is included in a forthcoming edition of the primary energy law textbook used in the country, Energy, Economics, and the Environment.

“A lot of what I do deals with societal decisions related to how things will develop and how land will be used,” noted Rosenberg.

Rosenberg is also an associate dean at the Law School, with responsibility for scheduling courses, examining the curriculum, and directing the LLM program for international students interested in studying the American legal system. He recently served as president of the Faculty Assembly for William & Mary.

Rosenberg’s service has extended beyond the four walls of the Law School.  In the 1990s, he was appointed by the governor of Virginia to serve for four years on the Chesapeake Bay Local Assistance Board.  He worked with several city and county governments, and served as a member of the Executive Board of the Historic Rivers Land Conservancy, Inc., and York County’s Planning Commission.  He has served on the Editorial Board for the Washington Lawyer, been active in the District of Columbia Bar Association, and has served on numerous American Bar Association committees including the Local Government Law Committee; Section of Natural Resources, Energy, and Environmental Laws; Committee on Environmental Law; and the Professionalism Committee of the Section of Legal Education and Admission to the Bar.

Rosenberg considers such public service highly beneficial for his own development. “Public service has deepened my understanding of the law and how law in action really works,” he said.

“Receiving the Chancellor Professorship gives me a great sense of satisfaction for everything I’ve done in my professional career, and I appreciate it immensely,” he said. “I feel that a long time ago I chose the right path, to go into legal academia—and not only because of the awards and recognition, but also because of the quality of the experience that I’ve had, with students, faculty, and the academic enterprise—and it’s a choice that looking back, I would make again a thousand times.”