Linda A. Whisman
Associate Dean for Library Services and Professor of Law
B.A., cum laude, French Literature and Art History, 1976, University of California, Irvine; M.L.S., Law Librarianship, 1978, University of California, Los Angeles; J.D., cum laude, 1983, Southwestern Law School; Member, California State Bar
Phone: (213) 738-6729
With undergraduate degrees in art history and French literature, Linda Whisman fully intended to become an art librarian when she enrolled in the Graduate School of Library and Information Science at UCLA. After securing her first library position in a law library and interning at the Los Angeles County Law Library, she became fascinated by the complexity and importance of legal information.
"We stress the importance of developing strong legal research skills since the ability to analyze a legal problem and find relevant legal precedent is at the core of an attorney's work."
Dean Whisman came to Southwestern in 1976 as a library assistant in the Serials Department. She was promoted to reference librarian, head of public services and acting director before her appointment in 1983 as director of the Law Library and professor of law. In 2007 she was named Associate Dean for Library Services. She teaches the legal research component of the first-year LAWS course. She believes that with good, thorough research skills and the analytical skills that students will learn throughout law school, her students can tackle any legal problem. Dean Whisman says, "We stress the importance of developing strong legal research skills since the ability to analyze a legal problem and find relevant legal precedent is at the core of an attorney's work."
In 1994, Dean Whisman's art history background was again put to good use when she began to spend a large portion of her time working with architects, designers and contractors in the process of turning a third of the historic art deco Bullocks Wilshire building into Southwestern's award winning state-of-the-art Law Library. In recognition of her efforts in that endeavor and 25 years of dedicated service to Southwestern, she was named as the 2001 Paul E. Treusch Professor of Law.
Dean Whisman regularly serves on law school site evaluation teams for the American Bar Association Section on Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar, and has served on the Section's Technology Committee and Law School Facilities Committee.