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New fund honors White’s accomplishments


April 17, 2008

A scholarship fund, planned to be the largest at ASU’s Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law, has been established in honor of Patricia White, who is stepping down to return to teaching after nearly a decade as dean of the college.

The fund, established by the Law Society of ASU, was announced at the 40th Annual Law Society Dinner, which took place at the college April 1 and was attended by nearly 100 members of the legal community, as well as White’s family and friends.

White called the fund extraordinary.

“It was a great privilege to be dean,” White said.

She thanked her family for making enormous personal sacrifices in their lives to allow her to do the job.

“I want to express my sincere and heartfelt thank you to all of you,” White said

The law society’s president, Timothy Burke, praised White’s leadership of the college as he cited many of her achievements, which include:

• Doubling the budget and the faculty.

• Creating a stronger and more diverse student body.

• Improving specialty programs such as the Indian Legal Program and the Center for the Study of Law, Science & Technology.

• Creating a vastly broader curriculum, including new interdisciplinary programs in philosophy, psychology, international law and real estate.

One of White’s biggest achievements is the renaming of the college in 2006 for retired U.S. Supreme Court justice Sandra Day O’Connor.

ASU President Michael Crow said White has helped build a law school that makes him proud.

“The trajectory the law school is on is fantastic,” he said.

Crow said White has hired faculty who are significant intellectuals and contribute to academic literature and intellectual discourse. He added that she has been one of the most significant fighters within the institution for access and has achieved a significant level of diversity in the faculty and students of the college, and that she has promoted programs that demonstrate a strong commitment to public service by increasing legal aid clinics and engaging faculty and students in the spirit of public service.

“As we go forward in what lies ahead for ASU and for the school, we’re doing that on the basis of what Trish has in her inner core: intellectual engagement, intellectual grounding and public service,” Crow said. “I thank you, Trish, for having instilled that into the core genetic material of this law school.”

Judy Nichols, judith.nichols@asu.edu
(480) 727-7895
College of Law