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Press Release

Three Longtime Faculty Members Retire from NIU Law

(From left): Professor Elvia Arriola, Associate Dean Dave Gaebler, Professor Dan Reynolds and Interim Dean Mark Cordes are pictured following remarks at their retirement reception hosted by the College of Law.

(From left): Professor Elvia Arriola, Associate Dean Dave Gaebler, Professor Dan Reynolds and Interim Dean Mark Cordes are pictured following remarks at their retirement reception hosted by the College of Law.

December 14, 2015


DeKalb, Ill.--Three longtime faculty members of Northern Illinois University College of Law are retiring from the school: Associate Dean Dave Gaebler, Professor Dan Reynolds and Professor Elvia Arriola. They will each serve as a professor emeritus.

“In a combined 80 years of service, Dave, Dan and Elvia have provided a wealth of contributions to the law school,” said Dean Mark Cordes. “As educators and scholars, their commitment to students, legal education and the law community at large has been tremendous.”

Each retiree was honored at various recent events attended by students, faculty, alumni, community members and friends of the school. Dean Cordes also presented them with commemorative plaques in appreciation of their invaluable contributions to the law school. All three spoke, expressing gratitude to their colleagues, admiration for the accomplishments of the law school, and the pride they have taken in helping mold law students into successful lawyers.

Dave GaeblerDave Gaebler taught contracts and commercial law for 32 years. For 13 years, he also served as associate dean of the law school and during this time, he was named Professor of the Year by the students. In addition, he has co-directed the school’s summer abroad program in Agen, France with the University of Bordeaux, along with Dan Reynolds, for the past 16 years.

“It was a privilege to spend time with the law students throughout the years. I think I learned as much from them as I hope they learned from me. One of the highlights of my career has been the annual trip to France, where students saw how things are done differently - both culturally and in the legal system. It expanded their world view and taught them that things don’t necessarily have to be done a certain way,” said Professor Gaebler.

Dan ReynoldsDan Reynolds taught Corporations, Contracts, Legal Ethics, and Legal History for 33 years. In addition, he has co-directed, along with Dave Gaebler, the summer program in Agen, France, where he taught a course comparing the English-based common law system with that of the Roman-based French and European civil law. During the course of his teaching career, Reynolds was honored as Professor of the Year by NIU Law students for an unprecedented six times.

Reynolds, who served as interim dean of the College of Law in the 1990s, was also the assistant reporter to the American Bar Association's "Kutak Commission" which drafted the new code of ethics for American lawyers. “Being a part of the professional formation of so many judges and lawyers over the years has been the great privilege of my life. I thank each and every one of them for that experience,” said Professor Reynolds.

Elvia ArriolaElvia Arriola was a faculty associate in the NIU Women’s Studies Program and served on its Executive Committee. In her 15 years at the law school, she taught Constitutional Law, Family Law, Gender and the Law, Sexuality and the Law, and a scholarship seminar entitled “Women, Law and the Global Economy”. She has also taught Professional Responsibility, Civil Rights Litigation, Contracts, Federal Courts and Domestic Violence. Arriola is executive director of Women on the Border, a non-profit organization dedicated to advancing awareness of the impact of NAFTA on women in the global factories at the U.S.-Mexico border – and currently serves on the Board of Governors for the Society of American Law Teachers.

“I identify as a feminist legal theorist and have engaged in research using the categories of gender, race and class to examine American law and policy on matters such as labor and employment, immigration and global trade law and policy, human rights and social justice concerns,” Professor Arriola said. “I have tried to teach my students to become lawyers who can also engage in critical thinking, people who will try to question the power of the law on peoples’ lives by using narratives and empirical data to advance social justice and reform. I hope I imparted to my students the usefulness of deconstructing the law with categories of analysis such as gender, sexuality, race or class.”


For more information, contact:
Melody Mitchell
Alumni Events & Public Relations
(815) 753-9655 or

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