Marisa S. Cianciarulo, JD, has been appointed to the position of Interim Dean of the Fowler School of Law, effective December 1, 2021. Dean Cianciarulo joined Chapman University in 2006 as a member of the faculty. In 2017, she assumed the role of Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, a position she has held with competence and distinction.
“I’m honored to serve the law school community as its interim dean and I look forward to continuing the momentum established by the good work of Dean Matt Parlow, the rest of the leadership team, the students, and the faculty,” she said. “And as the law school’s first female dean, I am excited to continue to promote Chapman’s sincere commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion.”
Dean Cianciarulo received her JD from American University Washington College of Law. Prior to joining the faculty of Chapman University, she practiced immigration law in the Washington, D.C. area, served as a staff attorney with the American Bar Association’s Commission on Immigration in Washington, D.C., and taught in the Villanova University School of Law’s Clinic for Asylum, Refugee and Emigrant Services.
A specialist in immigration law with a human rights focus, she has taught a range of courses, including “Civil Procedure,” “Family Protection Clinic,” “Gender & Sexual Orientation & the Law,” “Immigration & Refugee Law & Policy” (undergraduate Honors Program), “Refugee Law,” and “Remedies.” Dean Cianciarulo’s research focuses on vulnerable immigrant populations and the intersection of gender and immigration. She is a 2017 recipient of the Valerie Scudder Award and the 2010 recipient of the Law School Professor of the Year Award.
Her record of publications includes articles for Akron Law Review, Columbia Human Rights Law Review, Georgetown Immigration Law Journal, and Harvard Latino Law Review. Dean Cianciarulo has given scores of presentations to the gatherings of her professional organizations and is a frequent speaker for local organizations and commentator for numerous media outlets.
Dean Cianciarulo is a generous citizen of her profession and the Chapman community. She is the founding director of Chapman’s Bette and Wylie Aitken Family Protection Clinic and has served on committees for the Association of American Law Schools Clinical Legal Education and Teaching Methods sections, as well as the legal committee and board of directors for the Orange County Equality Coalition.
The process leading to the recruitment of a permanent Dean will begin immediately.