For the first time in U.S. history, a law school will be named after a Black practicing attorney.
On Wednesday (February 8), the College of Law at St. Thomas University in Miami, Florida, was renamed the Benjamin L. Crump College of Law in honor of the civil rights lawyer widely known as "Black America's Attorney General," per a press release.
The historic move makes Ben Crump the first Black practicing attorney to have a law school named after him. Only one other U.S. law school is named after a Black person, an honor belonging to the late Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall, who is Crump's personal hero, according to the release.
"The naming of the Benjamin L. Crump College of Law at St. Thomas University is the latest step in an effort to encourage bridge-building among the legal profession, law enforcement, and our communities," said David A. Armstrong, J.D., President of St. Thomas University. "Ben and I couldn't be more different politically, but we share a passion for justice and the hope that by working together, we can continue to drive meaningful change."
"Our faith in God, and our belief in the tenets laid out by our founding fathers in the US Constitution, enable us to go beyond race and politics, and focus on the work necessary to truly make the United States the home of the free, and the brave."
According to the press release, Crump chose to partner with St. Thomas University (STU) and its College of Law in part due to its diversity. The school was ranked No. 1 "Greatest Resources for Minority Students" in the 2022 and 2023 Princeton Review Best Law Schools rankings. It also landed in the top ten of Best Schools for Racial Justice (2022) in the United States by preLaw Magazine.
Additionally, St. Thomas University's College of Law is committed to serving "the poor and most vulnerable" as exhibited by its pro bono Immigration and Tax Clinics and its Human Trafficking Institute, per the release.
"It is a privilege to be a part of the St. Thomas University legacy through the Benjamin L. Crump College of Law. We have come such a long way in the journey to equality, but we are not there yet," Crump said in a statement. "The future changemakers and civil justice leaders that will matriculate from St. Thomas will soon be passed the torch from today's civil rights icons and I have every confidence that they will meet the moment."