After 20 years of service, Adelaide Ferguson retires

Adelaide Ferguson announced that she will retire from Temple University as of Dec. 31. Ferguson has served Temple since 1988 in a variety of roles, including associate university counsel, assistant vice president for international programs and assistant dean for graduate and international programs at Beasley School of Law. She spent the last year as interim vice president of International Affairs, setting up the university’s first comprehensive Office of International Affairs.

Both in her work at the Law School in establishing and directing the Law School’s international programs and in her current position, Ferguson’s passion for international education is apparent. In her more than 18 years of program development and management experience in Asia, Europe, the Middle East and the United States, she has made significant contributions to Temple’s globalization initiatives.

At the Law School, she oversaw the development of the university’s multifaceted Rule of Law program in China, its tri-continental masters’ degree program in transnational legal practice (in Japan, Rome and the United States) and its semester-abroad program for American juris doctor students at Temple’s Japan campus that is widely regarded as the most successful program of its type.

“I had the privilege of working with Adelaide for practically her entire tenure at Temple University. She deserves great credit for her role in transforming the Law School’s and university’s international programs,” said Professor Robert J. Reinstein, the former dean of the Beasley School of law and vice president for International Programs.

“The number of undergraduate and law students who study abroad, the number of exchange programs with foreign universities and the number of foreign lawyers who study at Temple, have all increased exponentially. In addition, Temple University Japan has become a unique center for international education; Temple University Rome is widely regarded as one of the best study-abroad programs in the world; and the Law School’s ground-breaking Rule of Law program in China has been an enormous success. None of this would have been possible without Adelaide’s tireless guidance and support. Her retirement is a loss for the university, but she leaves behind the infrastructure for making Temple a truly international university,” he added.

Ferguson is on the Executive Committee of the Commission on International Programs of the National Association of State Universities and Land-Grant Colleges and also served as chair of the American Association of Law School Section on International Legal Exchange.

“Over the years, Adelaide has made enormous contributions to the national international education community and to Temple’s international initiatives and, in a relatively short period of time, she made great progress in creating the new portfolio of International Affairs. We hope to be able to call on her expertise in international programs for future projects,” said Provost Lisa Staiano-Coico.

Explaining her retirement, Ferguson said, “I have enjoyed more than 20 very productive and interesting years at Temple, and during that time have had the opportunity to work with many talented and dedicated professionals throughout the university. Now that the Office of International Affairs is established, it seems like a good time to shift gears and refocus on my human rights work.”

Ferguson, who has twice been honored for her commitment to public service, recently earned a degree in Human Rights Law from Oxford University. In 2007, she won the Social Justice Award from the Jewish Social Policy Action Network, and in 1990 received the Philadelphia Bar Association’s Young Lawyers’ Division Community Activist Award.

The Office of International Affairs will continue to operate under the leadership of Deputy Provost Richard Englert, reporting to the Provost.