September 20, 2023 – All of us at the Public Interest Law Center were sad to learn of the passing of JoAnne Epps, President of Temple University, yesterday afternoon. Epps was a pillar of Philadelphia’s legal community, its cornerstone public university, and the city as a whole. She served for several years as a member of our advisory board beginning in 2009, and we are grateful for her service to our organization, among innumerable public-serving institutions across the city and the commonwealth, where she lent her leadership and talents as lawyer and as an educator. We send our sincere condolences to her family and friends, and all those who knew her as a caring and transformational inspiration and mentor.
JoAnne Epps served as dean of the Temple Beasley School of Law from 2008 to 2016. Mary Beth Schluckebier, a Law Center staff attorney who earned her J.D. from Temple in 2015, shared these reflections.
“The gravity of this loss is immeasurable — for Temple, for the legal community, for the countless lawyers and students she inspired and mentored, and for the City of Philadelphia. Dean Epps (as I knew her) was that rare combination of grounded humility alongside superior intellect, ethical leadership, and unwavering commitment to the communities she served. She was both Leader and Light. She embodied Temple Law (and the broader University) and the rich diversity, grit and commitment to the common good that are central to what it means to be an Owl. And while her legacy will undoubtedly live on, this loss is devastating. North Broad Street will never be the same.”