Larry Raful

Publication year2022
CitationVol. 37

37 Creighton L. Rev. 837. LARRY RAFUL

Creighton Law Review


Vol. 37


HON. ROBERT W. PRATT(fn*)


"Justice, sir, is the great interest of man on earth." - On Mr. Justice Story (September 12, 1845)

I first met Larry Raful at a Creighton University alumni event here in Des Moines. He struck me as a person who truly enjoyed events such as that and a person who was not merely "going through the motions." As time went on, I became more familiar with Larry and would visit him whenever my work, family or play would take me to Omaha. It turned out that he had and has many of the same weaknesses that I have (a fondness for baseball and political liberals) and so we seemed to bond whenever we got together. I knew that I didn't have a clue as to how difficult the job of a law school dean must have been and Larry while loving his work imparted to me his many faceted duties that went with his title. He was very good at what he did. I say that not because I had great familiarity with either his administrative work with the faculty and students and not because I knew much about his love of teaching (although I would learn later about that). No, I learned he loved his work because he saw his work as trying to "do justice." Not justice in the sense of just having maintained the status quo of the law school but justice in the larger sense of making the law school better and improving the quality of lawyering that would help make our country a more just and equitable place.

Whether it was his leadership in recognizing a law school's obligation to provide not only an excellent legal education but its related ethical duty not to graduate debt-ridden students into a profession that is over-run already with lawyers or whether it was in establishing a legal clinic and securing adequate staffing and funding for the clinic, Larry's mission has always been the same - Justice. The fact is that Larry's recognition of the law school's ethical duty has been recognized by none other than the American Bar Journal and because of this, many other law schools followed Creighton's lead in this regard. Yet, he has never mentioned that recognition to me. His legal...

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