U of Arizona official named to Smithsonian post

Monday - 3/16/2009, 5:22pm EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) - The Smithsonian Institution has named a top official from the University of Arizona to serve as the new chief lawyer for the world's largest museum and research complex.

Smithsonian Secretary Wayne Clough announced Monday that Judith E. Leonard will take over as general counsel on June 1.

Leonard, the University of Arizona's vice president of legal affairs, succeeds John Huerta, who retired in September. The general counsel's office, consisting of 17 lawyers and support staff, manages outside counsel and coordinates litigation with the Department of Justice.

Leonard previously served as staff attorney at the U.S. Department of Education and as associate counsel at the University of North Carolina.

The salary for the Smithsonian's general counsel position is being reduced under compensation reforms to align with the government pay scale.

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