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KNOXVILLE — Douglas A. Blaze, a 15-year faculty member and administrator, has been named dean of the College of Law at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.

Douglas A. Blaze
Douglas A. Blaze
Blaze has been the interim associate dean for academic affairs. He also is the Art Stolnitz and Elvin E. Overton Distinguished Professor of Law.

“The UT College of Law is exceptional. We are blessed with talented faculty and staff, bright and committed students, and a unique curriculum that successfully bridges the gap between theory and practice,” Blaze said. “I am honored and excited to have the opportunity to work with everyone involved — faculty, students and alumni — to make a great place even better.”

Professor John Sobieski, who has been acting dean since August 2006, will go back to being a full-time faculty member in the college.

“We are extremely grateful to John for the leadership he’s provided the college in the past two years. With 36 years of experience at UT, he was able to keep the college moving forward while we searched for a permanent dean,” Provost Robert Holub said.

Blaze came to UT in 1993 as director of clinical programs. He previously was in private practice in Phoenix, and served on the faculty at Arizona State University. He has a bachelor’s degree from Dickinson College and a law degree from Georgetown University.

He is co-author of “The Law of Negligence in Arizona.” His work has been published in the Arizona State, Georgetown, Tennessee and William & Mary law reviews.

Blaze is past-chair of the Tennessee Alliance for Legal Services and is a member of several other bar committees.

In 2004, Blaze received the Thomas Jefferson Prize for Excellence in Research and Creative Activity. He received the Bass, Berry & Sims Award for Outstanding Service to the Bench and Bar in 1996 and 2004, the Harold Warner Outstanding Teacher Award in 1997, and the Carden Institutional Service Award in 2000 and 2005. Last year, Blaze received the Ritchie-Bernstein Award winner for his contributions to the UT Legal Clinic during his tenure as director.


Amy Blakely, (865) 974-5034,