Harvard Law School has received a million donation, the largest ever from a single in dividual to the school, Dean Robert C. Clark announced earlier this week.
Reginald F. Lewis a New York City Lawyer and head of the largest Black-owned cooperation in the country--TLC Beatrice Holdings--donated the funds to help further the Law School's commitment to internationalization.
Clark said the school will name its already-existing international law center after Lewis, making in the first building at Harvard to be named after a Black person.
The Reginald F Lewis international Law center will be a "core center for international Programs," said school spokesperson Michael J. Chmura.
The Graduate Legal Studies Program, as well as the schools international library collection, will be located in the Lewis Center. The building will also be a base for the nearly 200 foreign students who attend Harvard Law School each year.
A portion of the gift creates the Reginald F. Lewis Fund for international Study and Research Clark said. The fund will support faculty research, visiting, lectureships, graduate and other activities such as fellowships for students from developing nations and summer internships for Harvard Law students in Third World organizations.
In a letter to the Law School Lewis also said he hopes his gift will be used to "expand and accelerate" the Law School's efforts in faculty diversity."
Cromwell Professor of Law Louis Loss said that "three million is a good slice" of the Law School's $150 million fund drive. But beyond the gift's material value, Loss said, there is additional significance.
"If I were Black, I should think it would be a tremendous boost," said Loss, a former teacher of Lewis.'
But former Weld Professor of Law Derrick A. Bell Jr. expressed concern about the effects of Lewis' gift.
In an interview yesterday, Bell said the although he believes Lewis supports efforts to improve faculty diversity, he is afraid the gift will send the wrong message.
"It's very easy for these folks to get a very different [message]," he said of Law school administrators.