Northwestern University Trustee Neil Bluhm ’62 JD and the Bluhm Family Charitable Foundation have made a $25 million gift to Northwestern to support Northwestern University School of Law and to provide additional funding for other areas of the University, including Northwestern Medicine, the Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute at Northwestern Memorial Hospital, the Bienen School of Music, and the Holocaust Educational Foundation of Northwestern University.


This significant gift from Bluhm and the foundation was announced in December. It includes a $15 million commitment for the Law School, the biggest gift ever made to the school.


"I am extremely pleased to support Northwestern University and the Law School with this commitment," Bluhm said. "And I am especially proud to assist with the important work of the Law School. I am inspired by the vision of Dean Daniel Rodriguez and his goals for the Law School’s mission and future."


Bluhm asked that his gift be allocated in ways that would help Dean Rodriguez accomplish his key objectives. With that in mind, the largest portion of the gift — $6 million — will be unrestricted. These funds will be used to support need-based financial aid and key initiatives of the law school’s strategic plan, which is under development. The law school’s Loan Repayment Assistance Program will be the next biggest beneficiary of the gift — $5 million will be used to help graduates who accept public service and government jobs repay law school loans. The Bluhm Legal Clinic will receive $3 million to strengthen its endowment and enhance clinical legal education programs; these funds are in addition to the $7 million Bluhm has already given to support the legal clinic. The remaining $1 million will be used over a 10-year period to build ongoing, sustainable support from Law School alumni through annual gifts to the Law School Fund.


"We are sincerely grateful to Neil and his family for this wonderful gift that will significantly benefit the Law School at a transformative time in legal education," said Northwestern President Morton Schapiro. "It’s a major commitment that will lend critical support to the Law School’s bold leadership, innovative programs and distinctive scholarship in American jurisprudence."


Bluhm, president of JMB Realty Corporation, has had a long history of giving to Northwestern. A Northwestern National Trustee from 1986 to 2008 and a Life Trustee since 2008, Bluhm received Northwestern’s Alumni Medal in 2009, the highest honor an alumnus can receive from the University.


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