Paul Ward ‘75, formerly Vice President for University Administration and General Counsel at Arizona State University, was named Vice President for Legal Affairs, General Counsel,
and Secretary to the Board of Trustees at Southern Methodist University, effective January 1,
“We are pleased to welcome Paul Ward to SMU,” said SMU President R. Gerald Turner. “As an SMU law alumnus, he knows the University well, and his extensive background in legal affairs at other
universities gives him the knowledge and experience to lead SMU’s legal affairs division.”
At SMU, Ward will oversee legal services to the University, including the supervision of three staff attorneys and the selection and management of outside counsel. Additionally, as Secretary to the Board of Trustees, he will work closely with the President and senior administrative
officers in coordinating the Board’s activities.
“Paul Ward brings the perfect combination of legal knowledge and practice for this position, and I am delighted he has been selected,” said Michael M. Boone ‘67, chairman of SMU’s Board
of Trustees legal committee. “I know he will play an integral role in SMU’s development through his collaborative work with the Board, President Turner, faculty, staff, and students.”
Ward became the Vice President for University Administration and General Counsel at ASU in September 2004. He served as General Counsel at ASU starting in June 1991. Prior to his association with ASU, he served the University of South Carolina System as General Counsel from 1979 to 1991. Previously, he was engaged in private practice in the Washington, D.C., office of Casey,
Lane & Mittendorf.
Ward served as president (1996-97) and as a member of the Board of Directors (1988-92 and
1993-98) of the National Association of College and University Attorneys (NACUA). In June 2000,
he received the prestigious Distinguished Service Award from NACUA. He currently serves as
member of the NCAA General Counsel Advisory Board. In addition, he recently concluded a term in the American Bar Association House of Delegates. In 2002, Ward received the Thomas S. Biggs Award at the Stetson University College of Law, National Conference on Law of Higher Education.
Ward graduated from SMU Dedman School of Law in 1975 after earning his B.S. and M.A. from Eastern Illinois University. He has been admitted to practice law in Texas, Arizona, South Carolina, Indiana, the District of Columbia, and the United States Supreme Court. Ward succeeds S. Leon Bennett, SMU’s Vice President for Legal Affairs and Governmental Relations, General Counsel, and Secretary to the Board of Trustees, who was with the University from 1983 until his retirement on December 31, 2008.