Wednesday, January 21, 2009
January 13, 2009 — A $1 million gift from animal rights advocate and television personality Bob Barker will establish an animal law program at the University of Virginia Law School.
Dean Paul Mahoney said the Law School and future generations of lawyers will benefit from Barker's commitment to animal rights.
"We are deeply grateful to Mr. Barker for his generous gift, which will enable us to expand our curricular and extracurricular offerings in this important and rapidly developing area of the law," Mahoney said.
Barker, the longtime host of the game show "The Price is Right," is a prominent national advocate on animal rights issues such as pet overpopulation and animal cruelty and neglect. In 1995, he created the DJ&T Foundation in memory of his wife and mother to support free and low-cost spaying and neutering clinics and programs.
The Bob Barker Animal Rights Program will include coursework, guest speakers and a writing competition focused on animal law, which is emerging nationally as an area of legal study, said U.Va. law professor Mimi Riley, who will spearhead the new program.
Barker's gift will enable the creation of Virginia's first formal course focused exclusively on animal law. The Law School plans to debut the class in the 2009-10 academic year.
The gift will also be used to bring in speakers on animal law topics, fund independent study and externship opportunities, and sponsor a writing competition open to all graduate students at the University of Virginia.
Barker has made previous gifts for animal law programs at other law schools, including those at Harvard, Columbia, Georgetown, Duke, Northwestern and Stanford universities and at the University of California, Los Angeles.