This year Saint Louis University School of Law is introducing the Order of the Fleur de Lis Hall of Fame, identifying individuals who demonstrated the University’s mission and Jesuit spirit. The inaugural class is comprised of 14 honorees who are deserving of this highest distinction. In the following interview, Joe Conran (’70), chairman of the University’s Board of Trustees and member of the SLU LAW Dean’s Council, discusses the Hall of Fame and the importance of recognizing those who have made significant contributions to the School and community-at-large.
Why is having a Hall of Fame so important?
Saint Louis University School of Law has a long and storied tradition of educating lawyers, judges and other legal professionals who stand out in their communities, not only in St. Louis, but around the United States. One of the things we haven’t done enough of is recognizing some of those outstanding individuals. This Hall of Fame gives us the opportunity to single out some of the great educators, great lawyers and wonderful legal professionals that were educated by or affiliated with SLU LAW. Also, this will allow us to provide a little more information to the community and to potential students about the outstanding nature of our law school and our legal education.
What qualities did you look for in selecting these nominees?
We want to recognize people who have achieved great things throughout their career. That doesn’t necessarily mean financial things, but more so the people who have made a difference in various communities. I also like to see people who have continued in their role in supporting Saint Louis University School of Law. We have many alumni who are active in supporting the School, so it was not an easy decision. Even as we tried to pick this first group, there were many others who were equally qualified, but there were physical limitations on how many people we could select. The one thing this inaugural class all have in common is that they all were wonderful people and were absolutely dedicated to giving and providing the best legal education possible to these young people at the School of Law.
Why is the Jesuit mission of Saint Louis University incorporated into the Hall of Fame?
At its heart, the Jesuit mission means the University wants to educate and develop young people into the best they can be. In this case for the law school, the best lawyers, the best judges, the best legal professionals, while at the same time having them understand that it is important to think about others and care about other people. People that have less. And I think of all the people I have known over the years, graduates of Saint Louis University School of Law really and sincerely understand that they not only want to have a professional career, but they are active in their community trying to help others in a variety of ways.
For more on the Order of the Fleur de Lis, including a list of the 2015 inaugural inductees, visit law.slu.edu/order-fleur-de-lis.