St. Mary's Law Journal


St. Mary’s University School of Law in San Antonio, Texas has existed for nearly a century. Thus far, there have been seven important written histories of St. Mary’s University School of Law, but no one has yet attempted to write a comprehensive history of the law school, nor have any members of the faculty published autobiographies. Having taught law at St. Mary’s since 1982, Professor of Law Vincent R. Johnson shares his first-hand account about the life of the law school during most of the 1980s (specifically 1980 to 1988). That period encompasses the bulk of the deanship of James N. Castleberry Jr.

Some of the moments discussed in this Article have proved to be turning points in the history of the law school including: the significant growth of full-time faculty in the early 1980s; introduction of computers and other technology that brought the university into the new technological era and greatly advanced scholarly productivity; changes in hiring policies; the creation and development of the annual summer study abroad program in Innsbruck, Austria; construction of the Sarita Kenedy East Law Library and the renovation and dedication of the Raba Building; student resentment of the administration; conflicts between the administration and the new, progressive professors; and the end of the Castleberry deanship. At the time, they were “tumultuous.” Other moments were not so important, but explain what life was like at the law school during a certain era.

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St. Mary's University School of Law


Katherine Spiser Rios