Justice William B. Lawless, of the New York Supreme Court, succeeded Joseph O'Meara as dean of the Notre Dame Law School (NDLS) on July 1, 1968. He was a past president of the Notre Dame Law Association. Lawless graduated Cum Laude at NDLS in 1944. As a senior, he was editor-in-chief of the Notre Dame Lawyer. During the following two years, he served as legal officer aboard the U.S.S. President Polk and U.S.S.Montague. In the period 1946–49 he practiced law with a well-known firm in Buffalo. He then entered Harvard Law School for the academic year 1949–50 and was awarded an LL.M. degree. From 1950–53 he was a trial partner of Williams, Crane & Lawless in Buffalo. He then became corporation counsel of the City of Buffalo, a post he held for two years. For the next three years he was the senior partner of Lawless, Offerman, Fallon and Mahoney. During this period (1956–59) he served as president of Buffalo's Common Council. In 1960 he was elected to a 14-year term on the New York Supreme Court, which is the court of original jurisdiction in that state. He was an elected member of the American Law Institute and co-authored New York Pattern Jury Charges (1965). From: Dean's Report 1967–68.Publications
LL.B. to J.D. at Notre Dame Law School, Beth G. Klein
Report of the Dean 1968–1971, William Burns Lawless
From the Editor's Desk, Notre Dame Law Review Editors
The Future, Philip S. Moore C.S.C.
[Farewell to Navy Fellows], Notre Dame Law Review