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University Relations

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May 31, 2007
Contact: Diana Lee, School of Law, (785) 864-9205.

Two KU School of Law alumni honored at graduation ceremony

LAWRENCE — The University of Kansas School of Law honored Donald W. Giffin and James M. Haughey as distinguished alumni at the school’s hooding ceremony May 20 at the Lied Center.

Giffin is a 1953 graduate of the School of Law. During law school, he was a member of Phi Delta Phi legal fraternity, a founder and editor-in-chief of the KU Law Review and a member of Order of the Coif. Giffin is a member of the Dean’s Club, a recipient of the James Woods Green Medallion and a founder and the second president of the KU Law Society. He is an adviser to the LLM Elder Law program and, with his family, has funded the endowment for that program. He has also established a scholarship in the School of Education. He and his wife are charter members of the Chancellors Club and its Hill Society.

Giffin is a retired partner in the firm Spencer Fane Britt & Browne LLP in Kansas City, Mo. He is admitted to practice before the United States Supreme Court and state and federal trial and appellate courts. He was an active trial lawyer from 1957 to 1995. Giffin advised antitrust clients and served as lead and appellate counsel in several antitrust and other civil and criminal cases. He successfully defended one of the early nationwide class action antitrust lawsuits. He is a graduate of the Professional Trial Lawyers Institute and the Advanced Course of the National Institute of Trial Advocacy. He was a diplomat of the National Board of Trial Advocacy and certified in civil advocacy.

Giffin was a member of the Missouri Supreme Court Rules Committee and the Missouri Bar Board of Governors and chair of the Missouri Bar Committee on Civil Practice and Procedure, the Legal Services Coordinating Council, the Committee on Professional Responsibility and the Select Committee of the Missouri Bar to review the American Bar Association proposed Model Rules of Conduct. He received the Missouri Bar President’s Award in 1982 and 1984. He also received two awards for his pro bono work.

Giffin served in the infantry and Judge Advocate General’s Corp of the Army. He was commissioned as a second lieutenant near the end of the Korean War. He was a paratrooper and a Green Beret detachment commander. He retired as a colonel from the Army Reserve in 1975.

Haughey is a 1939 graduate of the School of Law. He is a member of Phi Delta Phi legal fraternity. He was a member of the KU law school’s Board of Governors.

Haughey started practicing law in Montana in 1943, where he had a distinguished career. He is widely recognized for his expertise in mineral law.

Haughey is a retired partner in the Billings, Mont., firm of Crowley, Haughey, Hanson, Toole & Dietrich. He served in the Montana Legislature from 1961 to 1965 and the Montana Senate from 1967 to 1971. He was Senate Minority Leader from 1969 to 1981. He received the R.A. Campbell Distinguished Service Award from the Montana Association of Petroleum Landmen, the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Yellowstone Bar Association and the President’s Award from the Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation.

Haughey has strong connections to the roots of KU’s law school. Haughey and his wife, Katherine Hurd Haughey, gave a set of Civil War-era furniture to the law school that belonged first to his great-grandfather, Judge Nelson Timothy Stephens, who practiced law in Lawrence, and then to Stephens’ son-in-law, the first dean of KU’s law school, James Woods Green. Green and his wife, May Stephens Green, passed the furniture to May’s niece Elizabeth Stephens Haughey, who in turn gave it to her son and daughter-in-law, James and Katherine Haughey.

Haughey has enjoyed a second career as an accomplished artist. A portrait of the Stephens’ family home painted by Haughey hangs on the third floor of the Wheat Law Library. He has presented numerous one-man exhibitions of his work around the world and received many awards. He received the Governor’s Award for the Arts in Montana, the Montana Institute of the Arts Permanent Collection Award and Fellow Award and the Yellowstone Art Museum President’s Award for Philanthropist of the Year.


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