Russell Osgood

Professor Emeritus

Russell K. Osgood graduated magna cum laude from Yale in 1969 with exceptional distinction in history. He served in the U.S. Navy from 1969-71, returned to Yale in 1971, edited the Yale Law Review and received the J.D. degree in 1974. He entered private practice in Boston, became associate professor of law at Boston University in 1978, and joined the faculty of Cornell Law School in 1980, serving as editor of the Law and History Review. In 1988, he was named Allen R. Tessler Dean of the law school. Osgood's scholarly work includes books and articles in the areas of American legal history, employee benefits and pension law, and income taxation. Under Osgood's leadership, the law school introduced a new writing program in its first-year curriculum, developed an extensive international program, and increased the diversity of its students and faculty. He also taught an undergraduate political science course. Russell Osgood served for 12 years, from July 1998 until August 2010, as president of Grinnell College. While at Grinnell, President Osgood led a campus planning process that resulted in the construction and planning of a number of new facilities. Under a Trustee-funded initiative, entitled the Fund for Excellence, the College undertook a series of major programmatic and curricular advances including Mentored Advanced Projects, the addition of Japanese language instruction, and the launching of the Faulconer Art Gallery, the Center for Prairie Studies, and the Center for International Studies, as well as a successful diversity hiring initiative. The College’s strategic plan was formulated and approved under his direction.

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