WorldUniversity of Alabama Returns Millions to Top Donor

02:00  08 june  2019
02:00  08 june  2019 Source:   msn.com

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The University of Alabama School of Law sign on Friday after employees removed the name of the Nine months ago, a Florida real estate mogul’s pledge to donate .5 million to the University of In Alabama , top officials in the state’s university system have also pushed back at the idea that the

But the decision to return millions by the University of Alabama , at first seen as the result of that boycott, may as well be about demands of the donor over the law school that was supported by his gift. Emails released by the university on Sunday show a series of communications between the donor

University of Alabama Returns Millions to Top Donor© Blake Paterson/Associated Press The University of Alabama School of Law sign on Friday after employees removed the name of the donor, Hugh F. Culverhouse Jr.

The University of Alabama voted Friday morning to return a $21.5 ($AU30) million donation to a Florida businessman after administrators said he was trying to meddle in the operations of the law school, which had been renamed for him.

The businessman, Hugh F. Culverhouse Jr., had pledged a total of $26.5 ($AU38) million, the largest donation in the university’s 187-year history, the School of Law announced with great enthusiasm and fanfare last September. In return, university officials renamed the law school, based in Tuscaloosa, Ala., the Hugh F. Culverhouse Jr. School of Law.

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University of Alabama employees remove the name of Hugh F. Culverhouse Jr. from its law school's sign in Tuscaloosa, Ala., Friday, after the board of trustees voted to return .5 million to longtime donor Hugh F. Culverhouse Jr. Blake Paterson/AP hide caption.

The University of Alabama has chosen to return a .5 million donation from a donor who criticized Alabama 's harsh new anti-abortion law--a law that does not even make exceptions for rape victims and is clearly unconstitutional.

But tensions had publicly bubbled up in recent weeks, with Mr. Culverhouse reportedly dictating how he wanted the money spent and then calling on students to boycott the school over the state’s recently passed legislation that would outlaw nearly all abortions in Alabama. Gov. Kay Ivey, a Republican, last month signed the bill into law, paving the way for a direct challenge to Roe v. Wade, the 1973 landmark Supreme Court case that recognized a woman’s constitutional right to end a pregnancy.

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Donor claims opposition to Alabama pro-life law prompted return of funds. (ChurchMilitant.com) - After refusing to capitulate to a .5 million donor 's administrative demands, the University of Alabama (UA) returned his donation with Get briefed on today's top stories with Christine Niles.

— The University of Alabama board of trustees voted Friday to give back a .5 million donation to a top donor who recently called on students to boycott The university said that on May 28 — the day before Culverhouse's boycott call — its chancellor recommended the trustees return the donation .

School officials said the state’s abortion law, and Mr. Culverhouse’s reaction to it, had nothing to do with their concerns about the millionaire patron. In a May 29 statement, the school said instead that, “Donors may not dictate University administration.”

Mr. Culverhouse, a lawyer and real estate executive, had “complained about the law school’s administration” of his gift, and at one point had asked for the return of $10 million of the $21.5 million he had already given, according to a May 28 memo to the university system’s board of trustees from Finis St. John IV, the chancellor.

In the memo, Mr. St. John recommended returning all of the money to Mr. Culverhouse and taking his name off the school. On Friday morning, the board of trustees voted unanimously to return the money, according to Kellee Reinhart, a spokeswoman for the university system.

Ms. Reinhart added that the $21.5 million was sent back to Mr. Culverhouse via wire transfer. Soon after the vote, a crew began removing the signage.

Mr. Culverhouse told the ABA Journal that he was dismayed that his money was not being put toward scholarships and that he wanted to see student enrollment at the law school grow by 8 percent. According to Mr. Culverhouse, the law school dean resisted that idea.

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