Robert and Jane Toll Give Additional $2.5 Million for Penn Law's Public Interest Programs

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Media Contact:Steve Barnes | | 215-573-5181June 6, 2011

Infusion of funds allows the Law School to guarantee students summer funding for public interest work

he University of Pennsylvania Law School has received a $2.5 million gift from Robert Toll L'66 and Jane Toll GSE'66, which will enable the School to expand its existing public interest programs by supporting an array of student pro bono initiatives that has doubled in the past three years, guaranteeing summer funding to hundreds of students annually who engage in public interest related work, and supporting a generous loan repayment program for which the demand has increased 50 percent in recent years.

Mr. Toll, Executive Chairman of the Board of Toll Brothers, Inc., the leading builder of luxury homes, and his wife Jane have been strong supporters of the Law School and its public interest programs. The Tolls' most recent gift will fund ongoing loan forgiveness programs, internships and fellowships, pro bono service projects, and scholarship in the field of public interest.

"The Tolls have been major benefactors in the creation and the expansion of public interest programs at Penn Law," said Michael A. Fitts, Dean of Penn Law. "This gift provides a new infusion of funds in the midst of an economic downturn that will provide the Law School with additional means to increase our support for students and alumni pursuing public interest careers."

"It's my hope that graduates of Penn Law will run public interest organizations and significant departments, agencies, councils, etc. of our government, bringing our uniquely educated students to positions of leadership in the near future," said Mr. Toll.

Penn Law founded its public interest center in 1989 and renamed it the Toll Public Interest Center (TPIC) in 2006 in acknowledgement of a $10 million gift from the Tolls, which allowed the School to significantly expand the Center's activities. Today, TPIC is a multifaceted, cross-disciplinary program whose mission is to provide Law School students with meaningful opportunities to provide pro bono legal service to under-represented communities.

A national leader in promoting public interest and pro bono legal service, Penn Law is the first top-ranked law school to establish a mandatory pro bono requirement and the first law school to win the American Bar Association's Pro Bono Publico Award. In promoting the culture of public service at the Law School, TPIC is a locus for extensive pro bono and public interest programs at Penn.

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