Published on December 13, 2013 by Philip Poole  

Henry C. Strickland III has been named dean of Samford University's Cumberland School of Law, effective July 1, 2014. He succeeds John L. Carroll Jr., who is retiring after 13 years.

The announcement was made Dec. 13 and follows a national search.

Strickland currently is professor of law and teaches courses in alternate dispute resolution, arbitration, civil procedure, constitutional law and conflict of laws. He previously served as associate dean for academic affairs from 2001-11. He joined the Cumberland faculty in 1988 after practicing with a Charlotte, N.C., firm for three years. He also served two years as a law clerk for the U.S. District Judge Virgil Pittman in the Southern District of Alabama.

"Corky Strickland is uniquely suited to assume the deanship of the Cumberland School of Law during this strategic phase of its history," said Samford Provost and Executive Vice President J. Bradley Creed. "He is a proven and experienced legal educator and is highly respected by faculty and alumni. I have confidence in his leadership and am looking forward to working with him."

A graduate of Presbyterian College, Clinton, S.C., Strickland earned his law degree from Vanderbilt University School of Law, Nashville, Tenn., in 1983. He graduated in the top 15 percent of his class and was an editor for the Vanderbilt Law Review. Professionally, he is a member of the American Bar Association, the American Arbitration Association's panel of arbitrators and mediators and the Association for Conflict Resolution.

"We spent months reviewing applications and interviewing candidates for the position," said Brad Bishop, professor of law and co-chair of the dean search committee. "[Strickland] is a well respected faculty member of the law school. He is an outstanding teacher and served as the academic dean for many years. Corky will be a popular choice with Cumberland faculty, staff, students and alumni."

Cumberland School of Law recently celebrated its 50th anniversary as part of Samford University. It is one of 10 academic schools at Samford, the largest privately-supported university in Alabama. Founded in 1847, the law school originally was part of Cumberland University in Tennessee before relocating to Birmingham.  Nationally recognized for its trial advocacy program, Cumberland recently was ranked 40th in the nation by The National Jurist and has been highly ranked by other prestigious publications and rankings.

The law school currently is involved in a multiyear, multimillion dollar fundraising campaign for scholarships and other academic enhancements.

"It is truly an honor to serve as the dean of Cumberland Law School," Strickland said. "For more than 150 years, Cumberland has prepared exceptional lawyers who are devoted to serving their clients and their communities.  I am excited about working with the outstanding faculty and staff of the law school, Cumberland's devoted alumni and the bar as we meet the challenges of continuing that tradition in the 21st century."

Cumberland Law School 


Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.