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Fund supports diversity in profession

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A celebration of former Indiana Chief Justice Randall Shepard on Thursday set the stage for the launch of a fund in his name that will continue his legacy of promoting diversity.

Several hundred people attended a gala in Shepard’s honor that also included announcement of the creation of the Randall T. Shepard Fund for Diversity in the Legal Profession, sponsored by the Indiana Bar Foundation.

The fund will further efforts that Shepard championed. Those include diversity initiatives of state and local bar associations and supporting the goals of the Indiana Conference for Legal Education Opportunity and those of the Indiana Supreme Court’s Commission on Race and Gender Fairness.

The ICELO program annually supports an incoming law school class of about 30 fellows with stipends, mentoring and networking opportunities. Shepard urged creation of the program, which was signed into law in 1997 by former Gov. Frank O’Bannon.

Indiana Bar Foundation president Charles Dunlap said a fundraising goal of $150,000 has been established. Former Supreme Court Justice Myra Selby, now a partner with Ice Miller, and Rod Morgan, past president of the Indiana Bar Association, are co-chairing the fundraising drive.

“This fund is an inspiring tribute to someone who has done so much to open the doors to the profession,” said Selby, who served with Shepard on the bench from 1995-2000 and now chairs the Commission on Race and Gender Fairness.

Morgan, a partner at Bingham Greenebaum Doll, said the fund in Shepard’s name was fitting. He said Shepard’s record “shows his commitment to making our legal system better in the state of Indiana.”

Shepard said Thursday that he was humbled by an honor that will further his legacy of promoting diversity.

“To gather with a purpose beyond tribute – that of building our profession’s long-term commitment to equal opportunity – likewise states a powerful message about Indiana lawyers,” he said.

“Indiana’s legal profession needn’t stare down at its shoes and shuffle when people talk about lawyers. Indiana lawyers have earned the right to look our fellow citizens straight on and say, ‘We have done what it lies within us to do,’” Shepard said.

Along with Selby and Morgan, numerous colleagues paid tribute to Shepard on Thursday. Among them: Margaret Marshall, retired chief justice of the Massachusetts Supreme Court; emcees John Tinder, U.S. 7th Circuit judge, and Jan Carroll, partner with Barnes & Thornburg; Vanderburgh Superior Judge Margaret Lloyd; former ICLEO fellow and Madison Circuit Judge Rudy Pyle; and C. Erik Chickedantz, president of the Indiana State Bar Association.

“It is an honor and a privilege to manage this fund, which serves as a fitting tribute to Chief Justice Shepard and his longstanding commitment to furthering diversity in the legal profession,” Dunlap said.

Donations to the fund are tax-deductible and may be made by contacting the Indiana Bar Foundation’s director of development at 317-269-7864. Online donations may be made at www.inbf.org.

 

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  1. The $320,000 is the amount the school spent in litigating two lawsuits: One to release the report involving John Trimble (as noted in the story above) and one defending the discrimination lawsuit. The story above does not mention the amount spent to defend the discrimination suit, that's why the numbers don't match. Thanks for reading.

  2. $160k? Yesterday the figure was $320k. Which is it Indiana Lawyer. And even more interesting, which well connected law firm got the (I am guessing) $320k, six time was the fired chancellor received. LOL. (From yesterday's story, which I guess we were expected to forget overnight ... "According to records obtained by the Journal & Courier, Purdue spent $161,812, beginning in July 2012, in a state open records lawsuit and $168,312, beginning in April 2013, for defense in a federal lawsuit. Much of those fees were spent battling court orders to release an independent investigation by attorney John Trimble that found Purdue could have handled the forced retirement better")

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  5. It's just an ill considered remark. The Sup Ct is inherently political, as it is a core part of government, and Marbury V Madison guaranteed that it would become ever more so Supremely thus. So her remark is meaningless and she just should have not made it.... what she could have said is that Congress is a bunch of lazys and cowards who wont do their jobs so the hard work of making laws clear, oftentimes stops with the Sups sorting things out that could have been resolved by more competent legislation. That would have been a more worthwhile remark and maybe would have had some relevance to what voters do, since voters cant affect who gets appointed to the supremely un-democratic art III courts.

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