Barbara Glesner Fines Appointed Dean of UMKC School of Law

Barbara Glesner Fines headshot

Interim Chancellor and Provost Barbara A. Bichelmeyer has named Barbara Glesner Fines as Dean of the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law. Glesner Fines has been serving as Interim Dean since March 2017. She is preceded by Ellen Y. Suni, who served as dean for 13 years.


Endowed as the Rubey M. Hulen Professor of Law, Glesner Fines received her master of law degree from Yale University and her J.D. (cum laude) from the University of Wisconsin Law School. Her research addresses issues in professional responsibility, family law, and legal education. She has pioneered important innovations in teaching professional responsibility and the formation of professional identity, and was recognized with the 2016 Trustees Faculty Fellowship Award.

“The strong reputation of UMKC Law allowed us to attract a group of strong applicants. Barbara Glesner Fines stood out from that field by virtue of the compelling vision she presented for the school’s future growth and development; and the remarkable bridge-building skills she has demonstrated as a leader of the UMKC School of Law,” Bichelmeyer said. “I am looking forward to working with her and with Chancellor-Designate C. Mauli Agrawal to realize this vision.

“Barbara brings great skills to the table as the next dean, particularly her abilities as a connector,” Bichelmeyer added. “She has helped build important bridges between law school faculty and the philanthropic community; between the law school and other UMKC academic units; and between the law school, the legal community and the broader community. Now she will lead the construction of a bridge between our illustrious past and the promising future of the UMKC School of Law.”

Agrawal said he appreciated Gleaner Fines’ strong ties to the community as well as her academic credentials.

“I am looking forward to working with Dean Glesner Fines and the rest of UMKC’s academic leadership as we work to make UMKC an exemplary model of the modern urban university,” Agrawal said. “Barbara Glesner Fines is an example of the kind of leader who has demonstrated commitment to both students and the community, which is vital to raising a great city and a great university to new levels of excellence.”

School of Law Professor David Achtenberg and Assistant U.S. Attorney Lajuana Counts, co-chairs of the search committee, issued a joint statement:

 “Barbara Glesner Fines is clearly the right person for the job and will be an outstanding dean. We look forward to working with her as UMKC Law School continues to educate lawyers who have a profound, positive effect on the legal system in Kansas City and beyond.” 

Published: May 11, 2018