Tuesday, November 3, 2015 — Pepperdine School of Law Dean Deanell Reece Tacha has been designated a Metropolitan News-Enterprise Person of the Year, along with Chancery Club President Edith R. Matthai, and former Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Michael Nash, according to the newspaper’s co-publisher, Jo-Ann W. Grace. A tribute to Dean Tacha will appear in a special issue of the MetNews, and she will be feted at a black-tie dinner on January 29.
Tacha has been dean of the law school at Pepperdine since 2011. She was previously a judge of the Tenth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, appointed by President Ronald Reagan in 1986. She was chief judge from 2001-07.
A native of Kansas, Tacha was, at the time of her appointment to the federal bench, an associate chancellor at the University of Kansas. She came to that institution in 1974 as an associate professor of law, later becoming a professor, then associate dean.
From 1990-94, and again from 2001-05, Tacha chaired the Judicial Conference of the United States.
She was national president of the American Inns of Court Foundation from 2004-08; was chair of the American Bar Association’s Judicial Division from 1995-96; and chaired the ABA’s Appellate Judges Conference from 1992-93.
“Each of our honorees,” Grace noted, “has white hair, and has served our justice system for more than 40 years. And the accomplishments of each have been Herculean.”