Prof. Crain Named University Vice Provost

Marion G. Crain, the Wiley B. Rutledge Professor of Law and a Faculty Fellow in the Washington University Office of the Provost, has been named vice provost. Crain’s appointment is effective July 1.

In her expanded role in the provost’s office, Crain will support and encourage educational innovation across the university. More specifically, she will foster cross-disciplinary teaching and research, with a particular focus on advancing university-wide priorities.

“I’m pleased that as vice provost, Marion will become even more involved in the leadership of the university,” says Edward S. Macias, provost, executive vice chancellor for academic affairs, and the Barbara and David Thomas Distinguished Professor in Arts & Sciences. “Since joining the provost’s office as a Faculty Fellow, she has been instrumental in helping advance interdisciplinary faculty collaboration, which has become a hallmark of Washington University. I know she will continue to develop new and exciting collaborations across school lines to enhance our educational and research mission.”

Crain observes: “Washington University is fortunate to have many talented faculty who are enthusiastic about teaching and research that crosses school and disciplinary lines. I am excited to work with the provost’s office to develop new ways to incentivize and support these efforts.”

“We also hope to foster educational innovations that will position our graduates to be outstanding leaders, equipping them with the multidisciplinary capabilities that are critical to solving the pressing social problems of the next century,” add Crain, who was among the first three faculty members named to the newly created Faculty Fellow position in July 2009.

As one of four current Faculty Fellows, Crain has helped Macias on important university topics, such as encouraging more interdisciplinary cooperation among university centers, programs, departments, and schools to enhance teaching, scholarship and service. In 2010, Crain was instrumental in creating the Cross-School Interdisciplinary Teaching Grant Program, funded by the Office of the Provost.

Crain directs the law school’s Center for the Interdisciplinary Study of Work & Social Capital. As director, a role she will continue, she works with an interdisciplinary advisory board from across the university to sponsor scholarly roundtables, conferences and speaker panels designed to enrich the research and learning of affiliated faculty and their students by connecting them with research on similar problems in other disciplines. Crain, who was installed as the Rutledge professor in April 2009, is an expert in labor and employment law. Her scholarship examines the relationships among gender, work, and class status, with a particular emphasis on collective action.

She is the co-author of two textbooks, Labor Relations Law: Cases and Materials and Work Law: Cases and Materials, and is co-editor of Ending Poverty in America: How to Restore the American Dream.

As part of her commitment to legal education, Crain has been an active member of the executive committee of the Labor Law Group, an international collective of labor and employment law professors who work collaboratively to improve labor and employment law pedagogy through the production of course materials. She has been chair of the group since 2011. She also is on the editorial board of the Employee Rights and Employment Policy Journal, a peer-reviewed journal focusing on labor and employment law. In addition to her legal research and scholarship, she received the David M. Becker Professor of the Year Award in 2009 for excellence in teaching.

Her other service to the university includes serving on the Advisory Committee to the Provost on Women Faculty (2008-09) and the Provost’s Diversity Work Group (2009-11) and chairing the law school’s Promotion & Tenure Committee (2009-10) and the Student Life Committee (2011-12).

As a Faculty Fellow, she helped develop the protocol for a decanal (dean) review and served as chair for the first formal decanal review conducted by the provost’s office.