New endowment honors a living legend
The James J. Faught Endowed Scholarship provides a scholarship to one Loyola law student each year
If you graduated from the School of Law within the last four decades, you likely know the name Jim Faught (JD ’76). For many, Faught’s name conjures a kind face, a welcoming presence, a tall man with a gentle demeanor. Some alumni say that Faught, who retired as associate dean for administration in January, is synonymous with the School of Law itself.
In fall 2021, an anonymous donor established the James J. Faught Endowed Scholarship in honor of Faught’s tremendous contributions to the School of Law. The donor expressed admiration for Faught’s ideals, including his commitment to educational equality and his dedication to ensuring student success through guidance and support. This endowed fund provides a full or partial scholarship to one Loyola Law student annually. Jake Maginn (JD ’23) received the first award during the 2022–23 academic year.
“I’m honestly just so honored and grateful,” says Faught. “It’s been emotional for me and also for my wife, who has been by myside the entire time.”
Anyone can contribute to the fund, and many people have already done so. The outpouring of generosity from alumni, faculty, staff, and former classmates—Faught’s relationship with Loyola Law began 50 years ago when he was a first-year law student—is a reflection of the community’s deep gratitude for his many decades of impact.
Stewarding a culture of collaboration
Doug Poland (JD ’94), partner at Stafford Rosenbaum LLP, appreciates Faught for shaping the law school’s overall culture. When Poland entered Loyola in the early 1990s, he expected that his classmates would be competitive and cold, which was the prevailing stereotype of law students in popular culture. Instead, Poland quickly realized that Faught set the tone for the entire school.
“He is one of the most humble, unassuming, friendly, inviting, comforting people,” says Poland. “Dean Faught personified the culture of Loyola Law, which I see as serious but collaborative.”
Poland remembers that Faught emphasized an open-door policy and went above and beyond to make sure students knew he was available. He could often be found outside his office, roaming the halls, talking with students and checking in.
When Poland heard about the endowed scholarship, he was eager to contribute. As someone who received scholarship support, Poland is particularly attuned to the difference a scholarship can make.
“I think it’s incredibly important that we make sure money is not a barrier to people being able to pursue the kind of work that their heart calls them to do,” he says.
“Dean Faught personified the culture of Loyola Law, which I see as serious but collaborative.”
The right support—whether a financial award or a dean who cares deeply about his students—can change someone’s life.
“I wanted to recognize Dean Faught for all the students he’s helped and for what he’s done for the law school,” Poland says. “And it’s critical that we continue to build on the culture he created.”
Caring for the whole person
When Kevin Lichtenberg (JD ’10, MA ’11), attorney at HeflerLichtenberg and vice president of the School of Law’s Alumni Board of Governors, attended law school, he was impressed with Faught’s character. “He came across as somebody who exuded the highest morals and principles,” he says.
For example, Faught spoke with students about the Illinois Lawyers’ Assistance Program, a cause he’s passionate about (Faught served as president from 2009 to 2010). “It’s for lawyers struggling with substance abuse, addiction, and mental health issues,” says Lichtenberg. “He made it known that he cared about us and our well-being, and that would remain true after we graduated.”
As an alumnus and adjunct faculty member, Lichtenberg often ran into Faught at events and describes him as invariably kind and gracious. “He’s met thousands of students and alumni over the years, but he still knows my name,” Lichtenberg says. “Giving to the Faught endowment is a small thing I can do to be counted among all of us in line to support this really wonderful person.”