Leanne M. Shank is senior vice president for legal and corporate affairs and general counsel at the Law School Admission Council, where she provides legal advice to the Board of Trustees and senior leadership in all areas of LSAC operations. Shank arrived at LSAC after spending over 20 years as general counsel at Washington and Lee University, where she worked closely with its board, president’s cabinet, and School of Law in addressing all the university’s legal matters. While there, in addition to governance support and general legal advising, she focused largely on proactive risk management and implementing institutional compliance and enterprise risk management initiatives—two areas that she plans to develop collaboratively at LSAC. She has begun working with disability associations and communities to help enhance the pipeline and reduce barriers to legal education and the legal profession. Prior to her time at Washington and Lee, she was the county attorney for Rockbridge County, Virginia. Shank began her legal career at a private firm in Washington, D.C. She is currently chair of the National Association of College and University Attorneys, whose mission is to advance the effective practice of higher education attorneys for the benefit of the colleges and universities they serve. She has been actively involved in NACUA since 1993, having served on its board for two prior rotations including her election as its former treasurer and chair of the Committee on Finance and Audit. Shank has spoken frequently at NACUA conferences and higher education workshops and has attended numerous meetings at the Department of Education and White House on legal issues impacting higher education. She earned her BA from the State University of New York at Oswego and her JD from University of North Carolina School of Law.
Today, December 3, is the United Nations’ International Day of Persons With Disabilities. The U.N. has marked this occasion since 1992, and the goal of the observance is to “promote an understanding of disability issues and mobilize support for the dignity, rights and well-being of persons with disabilities.” That goal is at the core of our mission at LSAC, where we’ve worked hard to help people with disabilities enter the legal profession and add their diverse voices to our justice system.