Class of 2014 Gift Presentation
Paying It Forward
Columbia Law School’s Newest Alumni Give Back with Generous Class Gift
Members of the Columbia Law School community are used to going above and beyond; it’s exactly that quality that brought them to Columbia in the first place. But participation by 2014 graduates in this year’s Class Gift campaign exceeded expectations.
Each year since 1997, outgoing classes have commemorated their academic achievements and contributed to the next chapter of the Columbia Law School story by presenting a class gift to the Annual Fund at the graduation ceremony. This year, a dedicated group of nearly 75 graduates formed a voluntary fundraising committee, took a crash course in the philanthropic arts, and spearheaded a vigorous fundraising campaign. Committee members, including J.D. and LL.M. graduating students, reached out to friends, worked tables at Jerome Greene Hall and events like the Graduation Kick-Off party in March, and connected classmates to the class gift website.
Their efforts paid off. Nearly 70 percent of the Class of 2014 has contributed so far, bringing in more than $11,000 and doubling last year’s impressive effort.
Participation in the class gift can lead to lifelong giving. Many graduates have chosen to give precisely $20.14 in recognition of their graduation year. Others have elected to join the Harlan Fiske Stone Giving Society at a special graduating class level of $100. Donors are invited to earmark their gifts to one of six areas within the Annual Fund: student support, faculty support, international and LL.M. programs, school facilities, Social Justice Initiatives, or use at the dean’s discretion.
In return for their generosity and commitment to Columbia Law School, contributors to the 2014 class gift were recognized in the official graduation program, included in the Scroll of Honor presented to Dean David M. Schizer at graduation, and will be listed in the Law School’s Annual Report of Donors that is shared with all alumni.
This year’s class gift committee co-chairs are Emily C. Cole ’14, Frances Hayley Gourdie LL.M. ’14, Jorge Ivan Valencia LL.M. ’14, and Tabisa R. Walwema ’14.
Frances Hayley Gourdie ’14 LL.M.
Good afternoon. My name is Fran Gourdie. This year, with Jorge Velencia, Emily Cole, and Tabisa Walwema, we had the honor of serving as co-chairs for the 2014 Class Gift Committee.
Today, we are proud to announce that nearly 70 percent of this year's graduating class participated in the Class Gift Campaign.
The collegiality and support of this class shows our commitment to our school, and marks the beginning of our lifelong relationship with Columbia University; no longer as law students, but now as alumni.
We recognize the support of alumni who before us, who helped fund those non-pizza lunches, the scholarships, and all of those things that made our Columbia education what it was. We will go forward hoping to make those same contributions to students that come after us.
On behalf of my fellow co-chairs, we thank all 71 of our fantastic class gift committee members, and of course, most importantly we thank all of the graduating Class of 2014 who contributed to the campaign.
Tabisa R. Walwema ’14
Dean Schizer, on behalf of the Columbia Law School Class of 2014, we are very excited to present you with the Scroll of Honor. The scroll lists the names of 268 J.D. and 247 LL.M. students who contributed to the 2014 Class Gift.
Thank you again, and congratulations to the Class of 2014!