Florida law school honors Ben Crump

Florida law school honors Ben Crump
Ben Crump
Photo credit: / Kevin RC Wilson

Attorney Ben Crump has been leading the charge over the past few years to help bring justice for the families of victims of racial and police violence that includes George Floyd, Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown and Breonna Taylor. St. Thomas University College of Law in Miami Gardens has taken note of Crump’s deeds and announced on Dec. 2 that they are creating a social justice center named after Crump.

The Benjamin L. Crump Center for Social Justice will be housed at the South Florida law school and aims to cultivate the next generation of civil rights lawyers while also pushing more racial and gender diversity in the legal profession, school officials told the Associated Press. Crump believes he is just one of many and wants to create an army of Black legal freedom fighters.

“We really are trying to prepare an army — the next generation of social justice engineers. We will have the next Thurgood Marshall, the next Constance Baker Motley, or the next Kamala Harris, to light the way for our community and get the American promise of liberty and justice for all,” Crump told the AP in a statement.

The Crump Center will support an incubator program for students looking to establish themselves in civil rights and social justice lawyering and was recently given a $1 million leadership grant from Truist Financial Corp.’s charitable fund. The center will also assist law students with financial aid and help new lawyers expand their pro bono service placements.

“No one becomes Ben Crump on their first day as a lawyer, but mentorship is critical to building the confidence and the platform for people to excel. It’s not just about participating in the work, but creating the vision and taking it to the next level,” Tamara Lawson, dean of the St. Thomas University College of Law explained in the statement.

On Thursday, Dec. 2, the law school also launched a $35 million fundraising campaign to expand its ongoing training of lawyers who fight for social justice.

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