From the Dean’s Desk: Law, August 2023 - College of Law

From the Dean’s Desk: Law, August 2023

Dean Oren Griffin
Oren R. Griffin
Dean & Professor of Law

TU Law: 100 Dynamic Years

The University of Tulsa College of Law is celebrating its centennial this year. During the past century, we have developed into one of the most dynamic, student-centered law schools in the country. Our distinctive TU pride comes from the ethos under which we practice, both on campus and throughout the legal field. That spirit combines several elements, chief among them academic excellence, a prevailing humanity, service to our communities, connection to our roots, and, as I have often seen, a genuine enjoyment of the work itself.

This TU Law ethos has been a winning formula for generations of alumni who have shone in private practice and in public work in the federal judiciary, state and Tribal governments, social advocacy, and education, among other areas.

As TU Law begins its second century, we continue to attract top-tier faculty. This semester, we welcome five new faculty members: Marc Roark, professor of law and associate dean for faculty development; Gwen Savitz, associate professor of law; Erik Estrada, visiting assistant professor of law; Cheryl Nelson-Butler, visiting assistant professor of law; and Leslie Weeks, visiting assistant professor of legal writing.

We also continue to prioritize our social-justice advocacy, which includes being a champion of our immigrant communities, and much of our clinical practice is aligned with these areas. A key next step will be acquiring a prime location in north Tulsa for our B.C. Franklin Legal Clinic so that we are more accessible to the communities we serve.

Beyond our focus on restorative justice, we have opportunities to expand our clinical program with more work in transactional and business law, which are areas that will support TU’s “Heart of Tulsa” vision. We plan to build upon our foundation in energy, environmental, and resource law. These concerns intersect with Native sovereignty in ways that TU Law is uniquely positioned to address in even greater depth.

I look forward to working with the entire TU Law community of faculty, students, alumni, and friends. I welcome your ideas and interest. Please feel free to contact us at


Oren R. Griffin
Dean & Professor of Law