Photo of William Michael Treanor

William M. Treanor

Georgetown University Law Center

William Michael Treanor is the Dean and Executive Vice President of Georgetown University Law Center. Dean Treanor joined Georgetown as Dean in 2010 and began his second term in 2015. Under his leadership, Georgetown Law has hired 39 new tenure or tenure-track faculty members and almost tripled the total number of educational opportunities in clinics, practicums, and externships. During his tenure, Georgetown Law has doubled financial aid and experienced its most successful era of fundraising, culminating in a record year of over $40 million in giving in 2019.

In 2012, Dean Treanor was recognized by the National Law Journal as a “Champion” because of his work to “uphold the profession’s core values,” and in the same year he received the 2012 David Stoner Uncommon Counselor Award from the David Nee Foundation for his efforts to raise mental health awareness among law students. National Jurist magazine has named him one of the most influential people in legal education four times.

Dean Treanor’s areas of expertise include constitutional law, property, land use, criminal law, intellectual property, and legal history. University of Chicago Law School’s Brian Leiter has recognized Dean Treanor as one of the ten most-cited legal history scholars in the United States, and Dean Treanor’s article, “The Original Understanding of the Takings Clause and the Political Process,” 95 Colum. L. Rev. 782 (1995), is the most cited land use article of the past thirty years. At Georgetown Law, he has taught a first-year legal justice seminar and an upper-level course on the drafting of the U.S. Constitution.

Before coming to Georgetown, he was Dean and Paul Fuller Professor of Law at Fordham Law School, where he began teaching in 1991, and he twice taught as a Visiting Professor at the Sorbonne. Dean Treanor also served in a variety of positions in the government, including Deputy Assistant Attorney General in the Office of Legal Counsel, U.S. Department of Justice; Associate Counsel, Office of Independent Counsel during the Iran/Contra investigation; Special Assistant U.S. Attorney in the District of Columbia United States Attorney’s Office; Special Assistant to the Chair of the New York State Commission on Government Integrity; and Speechwriter for the United States Secretary of Education. He was law clerk to the Honorable James L. Oakes, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. Dean Treanor has a Ph.D. in history from Harvard University, a B.A. from Yale College (summa cum laude), and a J.D. from Yale Law School.