Dean David M. Schizer Awards The Medal for Excellence to Stephen H. Case '68

Dean David M. Schizer Awards The Medal for Excellence to Stephen H. Case '68

It is a great honor to present Columbia Law School’s Medal for Excellence to Stephen H. Case, Class of 1968. 

Steve is one of the leading lights of the bankruptcy bar, and his wisdom, insight, and integrity have helped to shape the way the field is practiced at the highest level. Steve has also made an essential contribution to another institution that is near to my heart—the law firm of Davis Polk & Wardwell, where he practiced with great distinction for nearly four decades, and where I worked as a young lawyer years ago. 

I do not know where Steve finds the time to do all the things that he does, but his record of professional achievement is truly remarkable. He has served on the National Bankruptcy Review Commission, on the Federal Judicial Center’s Bankruptcy Judges Education Committee, and on the adjunct faculty at Georgetown Law School. Steve now serves as managing director and general counsel to Emerald Development Managers, a successful venture capital and private equity fund.

Steve also is incredibly dedicated to Columbia. A graduate of the College as well as the Law School, he serves on the Law School’s Dean’s Council, was the first chair of Columbia University’s Alumni Council, and is in his twelfth year of service as a trustee of Columbia University. Steve also helped spearhead the Davis Polk & Wardwell Scholarship at Columbia Law School and personally established the Stephen H. Case Faculty Research Fund to support cutting-edge research at the Law School.

To all these endeavors, Steve brings his characteristic wisdom, grace, wit, and good cheer. Steve is the kind of leader who commands the deepest admiration and, also, affection. Through a subtle alchemy that I have experienced, but cannot explain, Steve has a way of motivating those around him to aim higher, to dig deeper, and to do it with a smile—in short, to be more like him. 

I could not be more proud to recognize Steve with Columbia Law School’s highest honor, the Medal for Excellence. Please join me in congratulating Stephen H. Case. 

Winter Luncheon
February 4, 2011