Published on January 23, 2015 by Derrek Smith  

Samford University’s Cumberland School of Law has exceeded its “Pride. Promise. People.” campaign goal.

As of the Dec. 31, 2014 conclusion, gifts and pledges totaling $17,208,602 had been received from 2,374 donors, representing the largest fundraising effort in the law school’s 168-year history. The public phase of the campaign ran from fall 2013 through 2014 with the unprecedented goal for Cumberland of raising $15 million.

Individual gift amounts ranged from $5 to $2.8 million.

Campaign cochair Stan Starnes said the campaign objectives were to raise funds to support student scholarships, academic programs, and faculty enhancements. Starnes is chairman and CEO of Birmingham-based ProAssurance and a 1972 Cumberland graduate.

“It is an extreme joy to celebrate the successful conclusion of the Cumberland capital campaign conceived in the depths of the recession. Never has it been more difficult in the history of the nation for a law student to secure an affordable legal education” Starnes said.  “For this reason, I am particularly pleased that this campaign will afford many students an education at Cumberland School of Law, when in the absence of this campaign, a law degree would not otherwise be available to them.

 “The success of the campaign is a reflection of the pride, devotion and affection which Cumberland School of Law graduates and friends have for our law school.”

As a result of the campaign:

  • 28 new student scholarships were formed,
  • 116 existing student scholarships and special funds increased in size,
  • 554 Public Interest Fellowship stipends were granted for first and second year law students to be able to provide community service through the Public Interest Academic Program, which occurred over the five years of the campaign,
  • 10 law faculty research stipends were granted, and
  • Two professorial chairs were created and endowed.

“Even with the campaign’s co-chairs Stan Starnes, Gov. Albert Brewer, and Professor Brad Bishop boldly launching the campaign in difficult economic times, friends and alumni of the law school responded to assure that Cumberland will continue to prepare exceptional, ethical lawyers committed to serving their clients and communities,” explained Henry C. Strickland, Cumberland School of Law dean and Ethel P. Malugen Professor of Law.

“The funds generated by this campaign will make the programs at Cumberland School of Law stronger and more accessible to students,” Strickland added. “I am grateful to the campaign’s co-chairs and executive committee for their hard work and sincerely appreciate every gift from every person.”

The successful Cumberland School of Law campaign was part of the university’s recently completed “Campaign for Samford” that raised more than $202 million.


Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.