University of Pittsburgh
June 7, 2005

Pitt Law Faculty Recognized at Annual Commencement

Law Class of 2005 chooses two recipients for SBA Excellence-in-Teaching Award
Contact:  412-624-4147

PITTSBURGH—University of Pittsburgh Professor Rhonda Wasserman and Visiting Assistant Clinical Professor Harry J. Gruener received the Student Bar Association (SBA) Excellence-in-Teaching Award at the May 28 Pitt law commencement ceremony in Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Hall Auditorium, 4141 Fifth Ave., Oakland.

Each year, Pitt's law graduating class chooses a full-time faculty member to receive the award. This was the first year in the school's history that two recipients shared the honor.

Wasserman, who joined the Pitt law faculty in 1986, has published articles on state jurisdiction, federal removal practice, class actions, and the use of preliminary injunctions for innovative purposes in such journals as Minnesota Law Review and Boston University Law Review. An advocate of public-service law, Wasserman has taught courses including Adoption Law, Family Law, Legal Process, Civil Procedures, and Conflict of Laws. She previously received the Excellence-in-Teaching Award in 1990 and the Chancellor's Distinguished Teaching Award in 2000.

Gruener (CAS '66, LAW '69) has practiced law in Pennsylvania for more than three decades. A partner at Goldberg, Gruener, Gentile, Horoho, & Avalli, P.C., Gruener concentrates on family law. He served as an adjunct professor at Pitt, teaching the Family Law course in 1998, and now serves as the associate director of the Family Law curriculum, designing and teaching additional courses within that area. Gruener achieved full-time faculty status this year, which made him eligible for the Excellence-in-Teaching award. Upon receiving the award, Gruener told the graduates and their families, "No greater honor can come to a teacher than the respect of his or her students."