Raichle Foundation Gift Funds UB Law School Professorship

Release Date: October 16, 2001

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- A generous gift from the Frank G. Raichle Foundation in memory of Raichle, a 1919 University at Buffalo graduate who was a prominent trial and appellate lawyer, has allowed UB Law School to establish its first named professorship.

Lucinda M. Finley, UB Law School professor who is founder and director of the school's civil litigation and appellate advocacy concentration, will be the first Frank G. Raichle Professor beginning in the spring 2002 semester.

Ralph L. Halpern and Joelle G. Raichle, trustees of the foundation, said the objective in establishing the endowed Frank G. Raichle Professor of Trial and Appellate Advocacy is "to encourage law students to examine the role of litigation and appellate advocacy in American society."

Halpern added: "We feel this professorship will help law students interested in entering the field of litigation and appellate advocacy to better understand the positive role in which the law and lawyers perform in the United States."

Nils Olsen, dean of the Law School, called it an honor for the first named professorship in the Law School's history to be named for one of "our most distinguished and illustrious graduates."

Olsen said, "Mr. Raichle was an outstanding lawyer who was devoted to his profession and the well-being of his Western New York community. Through this professorship, we have an opportunity to impart the principles, values and spirit embodied by him to our current law students. It obviously lends a very meaningful dimension to our curriculum."

Olsen noted that the professorship will help fund instruction in trial and appellate advocacy, relevant faculty research, professional travel, and speakers, lectures, and symposia related to the litigation area. In addition, he said that endowed professorships significantly increase both the reputation and visibility of the Law School, and greatly help the institution in its efforts to recruit and retain top faculty.

Raichle, who died in 1986, was a member of the firm Raichle, Banning, Weiss and Halpern and its predecessors since 1921, and a fellow, regent and past president of the American College of Trial Lawyers. Although he argued countless cases in courts, Raichle was perhaps best known for his early association with Gen. William J. "Wild Bill" Donovan, his defense of controversial lawyer Roy M. Cohn and his role as special prosecutor in a payroll-padding scandal that rocked Buffalo's City Hall in the late 1930s.

According to foundation trustees, Raichle always liked to stress the constructive role that lawyers play. Aware of the sometimes negative image of lawyers, he liked to point out that just as engineers build bridges and physicians heal patients, lawyers help resolve conflicts that allow engineers, physicians and others to benefit society. Raichle had a special fondness for litigators and appellate advocates, believing that they, in a direct way, make valuable contributions to the community.

The gift is part of UB's $250 million campaign, one of the largest ever conducted by a public university in New York and New England. Although it's the fifth major fund-raising campaign conducted by UB, it's the first national/international campaign, the first university-wide campaign and the first to be alumni-driven with campaign volunteer leaders from all over the country. Funds raised will be used to enrich academic programs, support students ranging from undergraduates to post-doctoral students and to enhance university life.

For information on how you can support the University at Buffalo, go to http://www.buffalo.edu/giving.