PUBLISHED:October 15, 2012

Duke Law launches $85 million campaign

Duke Law School has launched an $85 million fund-raising campaign in conjunction with Duke University’s “Duke Forward: Partnering for the Future” campaign. Duke Forward was announced by the University’s Board of Trustees on Sept. 29 and aspires to raise $3.25 billion over the next five years.

At Duke Law, the campaign will focus on “the people who make this institution great,” said Dean David F. Levi. The funding priorities are scholarships and fellowships for students; professorships and research funds for faculty; support for innovation in the curriculum and clinical programs; and funds for research centers and programs that fulfill the University’s ideal of “knowledge in the service of society.” The campaign also aims to boost support for current-use operating funds, including a significant expansion of the Duke Law Annual Fund, which provides support for everything ranging from Wintersession and Moot Court programs to student fellowships and library resources.

In a letter to alumni in the latest Duke Law Advocate newsletter, Dean Levi notes that the campaign “comes at an important point in our young history.  We have made remarkable progress since our birth in the 1930s as a graduate law program, and are now rightly recognized as one of the top law schools in the world.  However, because Duke Law is so good, our mission has become all the more challenging.”

Through a two-year “silent phase”, Duke Law already has raised $34 million of its $85 million campaign goal. Among the leadership commitments of $1 million or more received to date:

  • two $5 million gifts from Stanley (’61) and Elizabeth Star to support professorship and financial aid matching gift programs;
  • gifts to establish new professorships from David (’78) and Jan Ichel; Professor Emeritus Tom Rowe; Jeffrey (’65) and Bettysue Hughes; Mark (’78) and Jill Fishman; Candace Carroll ’74 and Leonard Simon ’73; and a combination of donor gifts that established the Robinson O. Everett Professor of Law;
  • gifts to support programs and strategic priorities from Bill Brown ’80 and Amy Moss; Rick Horvitz (’78) and Erica Hartman-Horvitz; Peter (’76) and Debbie Kahn; George (’70) and Susan Krouse; David (’66) and Gayle Noble; Miles Palmer; Lanty (’67) and Margaret Smith; and John (’81) and Ellen Yates.

These gifts and others will help the Law School “expand our young faculty and bring more top scholars to Duke; support our students with much needed financial assistance; enrich the curriculum with interdisciplinary and professional skills courses; and create exciting new centers and programs that serve our community, reach out to the legal profession, and advance our understanding of the law, such as our new Center for Judicial Studies,” said Dean Levi.

An alumni committee is charged with helping to steer the campaign. John Yates, chair of the campaign committee and member of the Duke Law Board of Visitors, says the committee is a way for him and others to “give back” to the Law School and ensure that the school is able to provide the same opportunities for current and future students as it did for him. “We view our role and that of Duke Law graduates as being to support Dean Levi by reaching – or exceeding – our campaign goals,” Yates said. “The campaign gives all of us who have benefitted from a Duke Law diploma the chance to give back to our alma mater and support the students, faculty, and administration at one of the leading law schools in the country.”

To learn more about the campaign and how you can get involved, see Duke Law’s campaign website or Duke University’s campaign website.