CHESTER The dean at the Widener University law school will retire at the end of the academic year, the university announced Tuesday.

Linda L. Ammons, who has been on sabbatical this spring, has been dean for eight years. The law school has two campuses, in Wilmington and Harrisburg. Prior to Widener, Ammons was associate dean and professor of law at Cleveland-Marshall School of Law.

The first woman and the first African American to lead Widener School of Law and the longest-serving African American female dean of any law school in the United States, Ammons will serve as counsel to Widener president James T. Harris for legal education for the next academic year. During Ammons' tenure, the school has received a record number of donations.

During Ammons' sabbatical, interim co-dean Erin Daly has led the Wilmington campus, and interim co-dean Robyn L. Meadows has led the Harrisburg campus. Both women will continue in those roles for the 2014-15 academic year, the school said. - Mari A. Schaefer