“My primary goal as a professor is to be an effective teacher,” says Professor James Diehm
, adding, “I would like to do what I can to prepare our students to become good lawyers by educating them not only about the subject matter, but also about the importance of integrity and professionalism.”
Professor Diehm arrived at Widener Law’s Delaware campus in September of 1987 after a long career as a practicing attorney, including serving as the Presidentially-appointed United States Attorney for the District of the Virgin Islands from 1983 to 1987. He taught at the Delaware campus for two years before moving to the Harrisburg campus when it opened in 1989.
Chosen for the Outstanding Faculty Award by the graduating class of the Harrisburg campus seven separate times, Professor Diehm has been cited for several teaching honors, including the Widener University Lindback Foundation Award for distinguished Teaching in 1999 and the Law School Alumni Oustanding Professor for 2000-2001 and 2002-2003. The appreciation is mutual, as he takes great pride in the accomplishments of his students, observing, “It is rewarding and gratifying to hear about students who have been successful in their professional, as well as their personal, lives.”
Years of professional experience as an Assistant United States Attorney for the District of Columbia, an Assistant Attorney General for the United States Virgin Islands, and as an Associate and Partner for Isherwood, Hunter and Diehm offer Professor Diehm an understanding of the challenges students will face as professional lawyers. “It is my hope that, as a result of my almost twenty years experience in the practice of law, I can assist students in making career choices that will lead to their professional success and fulfillment,” he says.
While teaching has been Professor Diehm’s primary passion since joining Widener Law’s faculty, he has still found time for public service. “In 1997, I was sent by the United States Department of Justice and the American Bar Association on a three month mission to Russia and Ukraine to start the Criminal Law Reform Project in Ukraine,” he notes proudly. He has also served as a lecturer and an instructor at the Attorney General's Advocacy Institute of the United States Department of Justice, taught a course in Comparative Criminal Procedure at Widener's summer program in Geneva, Switzerland four times, and written numerous articles. “I would be pleased if my scholarship could, in some way, contribute to the development and understanding of the law,” explains Professor Diehm. The example he sets for his students, however, is undeniable.