Our CSU C|M|LAW community was deeply saddened to learn that Dean Browne Lewis passed away on June 2 while attending a professional conference.
Dean Lewis joined the CSU C|M|LAW faculty in 2008 and left in July 2020 to become the Dean of the North Carolina Central University School of Law.
In her time at CSU C|M|LAW, Dean Lewis had a profound impact on our school and our students. She was the Leon M. and Gloria Plevin Professor of Law and the founding Director of the Law School’s Center for Health Law & Policy, spearheading an innovative approach that connected countless law students to the professional opportunities in health law. One of her former students, Gordon Gantt, Assistant General Counsel at University Hospitals in Cleveland, wrote, “Browne was a tremendous scholar and a mentor to many of us privileged to be her students.”
She served as faculty adviser to multiple student organizations at our law school, including the Black Law Students Association (BLSA), the Thurgood Marshall Moot Court Team, and the Journal of Law and Health.
She was a prolific writer in the areas of bioethics, environmental, family and inheritance law. Her articles have been published in multiple prestigious journals and she authored seven books. In 2012, Dean Lewis was a Visiting Researcher at the Brocher Foundation in Geneva, Switzerland. In addition, she had been a Visiting Scholar at the University of Texas Institute for Medical Humanities, at The Hasting Center, and at Yale University's Interdisciplinary Center for Bioethics. She was a Senior Fulbright Specialist at Haifa University and Hebrew University in Israel, and a Core Fulbright Scholar at King's College in London.
Dean Lewis was also a board member with the Center for Computer-Assisted Legal Instruction (CALI). She wanted CALI to be better in its attention to diversity, equity and inclusion, and she was ahead of many in seeing how the issues link to teaching, communicating and socializing through technology.
Professor Lewis earned her BA from Grambling State University (graduating first in her class), her JD from the University of Minnesota School of Law, her LLM from the University of Houston School of Law, and her MPA from the Hubert H. Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs.
She was a force of nature and a fierce advocate for our students, particularly our students of color. An extraordinary leader, colleague and friend, she was extremely passionate about social justice and its intersection with law.
We at CSU Cleveland-Marshall College of Law feel honored that Dean Lewis’s bright star shone on our law school and that her influence and dedication will be felt for generations of our law students. We send our deepest condolences to her friends and family.
Professor Lewis’ family has asked that charitable donations on behalf of Dean Browne Lewis can be made to the Center for Health Law & Policy at CSU Cleveland-Marshall College of Law (2121 Euclid Ave. Cleveland, Ohio 44115).