New scholarship honors Elon Law dean emeritus

The scholarship in memory of Dean Emeritus & Professor of Law George R. Johnson, Jr., will be awarded to students who have a commitment to promoting the ideals of diversity, equity, and inclusion at Elon Law and within the legal profession.

This announcement was first published in the Fall 2021 Magazine of Elon.


As a tribute to the late Dean Emeritus and Professor of Law George R. Johnson, Jr., Elon Law Advisory Board members Mark Jetton ’06 L’09 and Ronny Lancaster, along with Elon Law alumni Eric Meredith L’09 and Raleigh Lancaster ’08 L’13, have created the Dean Emeritus George R. Johnson, Jr. Memorial Law Scholarship.

Johnson, who passed away in November 2020, was a founding member of Elon University School of Law. He earned an exceptional reputation as a teacher, mentor, scholar, and leader in the legal community.

“As a member of the profession and parent of an Elon [University] and Elon Law graduate, making a gift to a scholarship in Dean Johnson’s memory is a most fitting way to honor his legacy,” Ronny Lancaster said. “The scholarship will reward Elon Law students who exhibit intellect, integrity, leadership and compassion — the very ideals he exemplified.”

The scholarship is intended to honor Johnson’s many contributions to the school and to the legal profession. As a member of the founding faculty, Johnson began teaching at Elon Law in 2006. He went on to serve as Elon Law’s first associate dean of academic affairs before being named dean in 2009. In 2014, Johnson returned to the faculty and continued to teach and inspire the next generation of lawyers.

“More than a professor, and more than the dean he would be by the time I graduated, he was a mentor and a friend to so many of us,” Jetton said. “Now that we’re into our second decade of practicing law having successfully established our firm, I felt the time was right to give back to create opportunities for future Elon Law students, while honoring Dean Johnson who dedicated his career to building a better profession.”

The scholarship will be awarded to students who have a commitment to promoting the ideals of diversity, equity, and inclusion at Elon Law and/or within the legal profession.

“It’s impossible to think back on my time in law school and not think of Dean Johnson,” Meredith said. “Making a gift to help establish a scholarship in his name will help so many future Elon Law students learn the values and knowledge he instilled in us all, while preserving his legacy as the type of lawyer we all should aspire to be.”