Professor Omari Simmons named director of Wake Forest Law’s new Business Law Program

Photo of Professor Omari Simmons

Professor Omari Simmons

In Fall 2015, Wake Forest Law will introduce its Business Law Program, which is a student-centered program designed to expand student opportunities that strengthen knowledge of business law concepts as well as develop skills to assist professional development and readiness for practice. 

The program targets four core areas: academic enrichment, professional development and ethics, experiential learning and joint degrees.  Its goal is to engage students, faculty, alumni, practitioners, and the broader community in an important dialogue on emerging business law issues.

Professor Omari Simmons, who teaches Contracts, Business Associations, and Corporate Governance, among other courses, has been named the inaugural director of the program. His research interests include corporate governance and higher education policy.  His recent articles have appeared in the Notre Dame Law Review, Illinois Law Review, Arizona State Law Review, Wake Forest Law Review, among others.  Prior to joining the Wake Forest Law School faculty, Professor Simmons worked as corporate counsel for two multi-national corporations and as an associate at the law firm of Wilmer Hale in Washington, D.C.  Immediately after law school, he clerked for the Honorable E. Norman Veasey, Chief Justice of the Delaware Supreme Court. Professor Simmons is a member of the American Law Institute and serves on the Executive Committee of the Association of American Law Schools Section on Business Associations.

Wake Forest Law is well positioned in the business law arena, according to Professor Simmons.  “The law school has a strong business law faculty, broad course offerings and excellent experiential learning opportunities,” he explains. “Wake Forest Law alumni are successful general counsels, law firm partners, investment bankers, chief executive officers, and assume many other important roles advising business enterprises both large and small.”

Thomas Sager (’76), former vice president and general counsel for Dupont Co. and Wake Forest Law General Counsel Board Member, is currently a partner at Ballard Spahr LLP. He says the Business Law Program is an excellent opportunity for students to enhance their readiness for the challengesof an increasingly complex and highly regulated legal environment.

“It will prepare and position our students to respond to the emerging needs of a rapidly evolving global business community,” he explains. “As a former general counsel of a Fortune 500 multi-national corporation, I can readily foresee the value and critical importance of this program in providing the students with a solid foundation to effectively counsel their business clients in highly creative and resourceful ways.”

According to Executive Dean for Academic Affairs Ron Wright, “The Business Law Program will help students make the most of our rich course offerings and talented faculty in the business law arena. Our hands-on learning opportunities, such as the Community Law and Business Clinic and our Carolina Externship, will get a real boost.  We believe this new program will give us momentum in a fast-moving part of the world.”

Interim Dean Suzanne Reynolds (’77) is excited about the benefits the new Business Law Program will offer Wake Forest Law students.

“I am happy that Wake Forest Law is bringing attention to these important issues,” she says. “Professor Simmons’ corporate governance scholarship and his business experience in this and other topics make him the natural leader of these efforts.”

Learn more at http://business.law.wfu.edu/ or by contacting Professor Omari Simmons.