May 8, 2012
BOSTON — A Harvard Law School professor and former Reagan administration official is calling "false" and "complete nonsense" any suggestion that Elizabeth Warren enjoyed an affirmative action advantage in her hiring as a full professor.
Harvard Law School professor Charles Fried told WGBH that the Democratic Senate candidate was recruited to be a tenured professor because she was preeminent in the fields of bankruptcy and commercial law, saying, "The suggestion that Elizabeth Warren was an affirmative action hire or that somehow minority status played any role in her hiring, displays a profound ignorance both of the hiring process at a major law school and also of her particular qualifications.”
Fried was a member of the appointments committee that reviewed Warren. He said the subject of her Native American ancestry never came up.
“She was hired because she is a superstar in her field. She’s at the very top of her profession as a scholar. She was one of the two or three best in the country," he said. Glowing student evaluations have continued to show her abilities in the classroom, he added.
He said that calls for Harvard to conduct a review of Warren’s hiring, as suggested by State Republican Party chairman Bob Maginn, were wrong-headed. Maginn did not return our emails.