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Law School Mourns Death of 30-year Tenured Professor Mary Harter Mitchell


November 4, 2009

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  • Elizabeth Allington

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It is with great sadness that the IU School of Law-Indianapolis has announced the untimely passing of Professor  Mary Harter Mitchell  who died Wednesday morning (Nov. 4, 2009.)

Professor Mitchell, who was named the Alan H. Cohen Professor of Law in 2004, was well loved by everyone in the law school family. Mitchell, 56, joined the school’s faculty in 1980 and taught contracts, as well as courses in elder law, law and religion, and prisoners’ rights.

During her nearly 30-year tenure at the school, she served on virtually every faculty committee, including the Executive Committee. Mitchell also has served as the faculty advisor for five student organizations, including Law Students Against Capital Punishment; Women’s Caucus; Lambda Law Society; Society on Law and Conscience and the Dean’s Tutorial Society.

The professor authored “Legal Reference for Older Hoosiers,” a book on legal issues of special concern to older citizens in Indiana. She was the recipient of an Indiana University Trustees’ Teaching Award in 2003.

“Mary was a beloved member of our family who will be missed in ways that cannot be described. Our hearts, thoughts, and prayers are certainly with Mary’s husband Frank and her daughters Sally and Clara,” said law school Dean Gary R. Roberts.

Mitchell, a 1975 Butler University graduate, earned her law degree from Cornell Law School.