U.S. District Judge Royal Furgeson Jr., ’67, has been appointed founding dean of the University of North Texas at Dallas College of Law, which is scheduled to open in August of 2014. Furgeson is currently a judge at the United States District Court, Northern District of Texas.
Furgeson is expected to begin his deanship at the law school in April 2013, after he retires from the bench.
“The Law School is very proud to hear of Royal Furgeson’s appointment as founding dean,” said UT Law Interim Dean Stefanie Lindquist. “He has led a distinguished career as a lawyer and judge, and the University of North Texas at Dallas College of Law has made an excellent choice for a dean to lead them forward in the field of legal education.”
The Texas Legislature approved the creation of the UNT Dallas College of Law, which will be the first public law school in North Texas, in 2009. It will be housed at 1901 Main Street in Downtown Dallas, in a renovated building that used to be the Titche/Joske’s department store. The city’s Old Municipal Building will be renovated for use as the permanent home of the UNT Dallas College of Law.
Furgeson was appointed as a federal judge by President Bill Clinton in 1994. He has presided at courts in El Paso, Midland-Odessa, San Antonio, and Dallas. Before becoming a judge, he practiced law with the El Paso law firm of Kemp, Smith, Duncan, and Hammond, where he headed the commercial litigation section and carried out many pro bono efforts.