University of Wisconsin Law School Professor Steph Tai has been named the new associate dean for Education and Faculty Affairs at the Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies.

“Environmental problems are inherently interdisciplinary, and I look forward to strengthening our existing interdisciplinary synergies in research and education, as well as fostering new ones,” Tai said. 

Tai, whose scholarly research examines the interactions between environmental and health sciences and administrative law, holds affiliations with the Nelson Institute and the Wisconsin Energy Institute. They have been with UW–Madison since 2006, climbing the ranks from assistant to associate to full professor five years ago.

Steph Tai
Steph Tai

“Steph is a tireless and creative leader seeking solutions to climate change,” said Susannah Camic Tahk, associate dean of Research & Faculty Development. “Their active engagement in so many areas shows how energetic and committed they are to social change.”

Tai holds a J.D. from Georgetown University and a Ph.D. from Tufts University. Before coming to UW Law, they taught at Georgetown and Washington and Lee University.

Tai has extensive experience outside academia as well. They have served as editor-in-chief of the International Review for Environmental Strategies; a judicial law clerk to the Honorable Ronald Lee Gilman on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit; an appellate attorney in the Environment and Natural Resources Division of the U.S. Department of Justice; and a U.S. Supreme Court Fellow as a researcher in the Federal Judicial Center.

“What if you could design a scholarly environmental leader from scratch?” said Dean Paul Robbins. “They’d need a huge grasp of policy and law, a deep appreciation for science, a commitment for serving diverse publics, a passion for the Earth, and a love for the university they call home. An impossible combination? Apparently not. Steph Tai brings us more than we could possibly ask for; we are so excited to have Steph serve in leadership here at Nelson.”

The Nelson Institute confronts global environmental challenges through research, education and public programs. The associate dean role acts as the institute’s de facto department chair, as well as the curriculum director, the leader for all undergraduate and graduate programs, the key point for Nelson faculty promotions and awards, and more. 

Article by Jennie Broecker, University of Wisconsin Law School External Affairs

Submitted by Law School News on November 16, 2023

This article appears in the categories: Faculty

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