Meet the Law School's Alumni Fellow

Watch video

Our 2013 Alumni Fellow, Steve Porter, is a native Louisvillian. He received his BA from Duke University and returned to Louisville to earn his JD from the Brandeis School of Law.

The Brandeis School of Law has a strong commitment to public service. In 1992 our school was one of the first in the country to adopt public service as a graduation requirement. Although Steve graduated several years before the school adopted the public service requirement, his life work embodies its values. Even before Steve arrived at the Brandeis School of Law, he took a stand against segregation and racial discrimination. During March of 1965 Steve chose to stand up against bigotry and not let hate have the last word. During that spring Steve joined many young people at sit-ins and marches including taking part in the walk from Selma to Montgomery.

Two years later Steve welcomed Martin Luther King Jr. to the Allen Courtroom in the Brandeis School of Law. Recently he shared these civil rights stories with our students and I hope all of you can get Steve to tell them to you.

Steve continued his civil rights activities when as an attorney he defended the JCPS student assignment plan over many years. As the Director of the Crime Commission in the late 60s and early 70s Steve pushed for a public defender system, a new jail, merger of police departments, full-time prosecutors and a revised court system. Steve is also a tireless advocate for fair housing, historical preservation and neighborhood planning. He makes sure neighbors, neighborhood associations, preservation groups and environmental groups are on a level playing field with developer interests in planning and zoning matters.

Please join me in congratulating Steve on his newest honor, the 2013 Brandeis School of Law Alumni Fellow.