Loyola to launch legal center for social justice
Communities in need of critical legal services in such areas as health care, education, and criminal justice will benefit from a new center at Loyola University Chicago’s School of Law thanks to the generosity of alumnus Curt Rodin (JD ’75) and his wife, Linda Rodin.
The Curt and Linda Rodin Center for Social Justice will strengthen and further develop several leading law school programs at Loyola that assist the most underserved members of society by offering support, training, and resources. These programs include Loyola’s nationally recognized Legislation and Policy Clinic, Education Law and Policy Institute, and Health Justice Project. The center also will produce meaningful research and advocacy to foster systemic change and to help eradicate gross inequities in these areas of basic human needs.
“Curt and Linda Rodin have shown long-standing generosity in supporting Loyola’s social justice mission of service to others,” said Michael J. Kaufman, dean of the School of Law. Previous gifts from the Rodins have established scholarships, fellowships, and a professorship in Loyola’s Health Justice Project.
“This transformative leadership gift will provide extraordinary opportunities for our students to use their professional skills to serve the most vulnerable members of our communities and to gain invaluable real-life practical training as student clinicians and agents for social change,” Kaufman said.
Anita Weinberg (JD ’86), a member of Loyola’s clinical law faculty since 1998, has been named executive director of the Rodin Center. Weinberg has more than 35 years of experience as an attorney and social worker, and serves as director of the ChildLaw Policy Institute, a component of Loyola’s internationally recognized Civitas ChildLaw Center. In 2014, she was the University’s inaugural recipient of the St. Ignatius Loyola Award for Excellence in Teaching, which recognizes a faculty member whose teaching demonstrates a commitment to excellence, raises global awareness, and promotes social justice.
Curt Rodin began his legal career as a law clerk at Anesi, Ozmon, Rodin, Novak, & Kohen, Ltd. in 1975, and served as managing partner and president from 1996 to 2006. During his distinguished career, he represented victims of construction injury, product defects, and medical malpractice. He is one of only a handful of personal injury attorneys to be listed in The Best Lawyers in America for 10 consecutive years. Rodin has served as president of the Illinois Trial Lawyers Association and the Society of Trial Lawyers, and chair of the Committee on Civil Jury Instructions of the Illinois Supreme Court. He has also served on numerous committees of the Illinois State Bar Association and the American Association for Justice.
“Linda and I have long believed that everyone deserves quality legal representation,” Rodin said. “It is our hope that the new Center for Social Justice at Loyola will help to serve those most in need.”
Rodin is a member of Loyola University Chicago’s part-time law faculty and the School of Law’s Circle of Advocates Advisory Board. In 2001, the Rodins established the Rodin Fellowship to support two student fellows in moot court. They also established the Harold and Shirley Rodin Scholarship and the Curt N. and Linda Rodin Scholarship, as well as the Curt and Linda Rodin Visiting Clinical Professorship to support a clinical faculty position in Loyola’s Health Justice Project, a nationally recognized medical-legal partnership that addresses social and legal issues that negatively affect the health of low-income individuals. In 2011, Rodin was honored with the School of Law’s Medal of Excellence, the highest honor bestowed by the school.
A celebration for the opening of the Curt and Linda Rodin Center for Social Justice is planned for spring 2018.