A $1 million gift from the Emmett Family Foundation and a $1.5 million matching gift challenge will greatly increase UCLA School of Law's capacity to advance law and policy solutions to pressing environmental issues and to train the next generation of environmental leaders. The gift is a re-investment by Dan and Rae Emmett, whose gift to UCLA Law in 2008 established the Emmett Center on Climate Change and the Environment — the nation's first law school–based center focused exclusively on climate change.
"Dan and Rae Emmett's visionary gift to create the Emmett Center has placed UCLA School of Law at the forefront of climate change law and policy," said Rachel F. Moran, the school's dean. "They have played a key role in the development and success of the center, and we are tremendously grateful for their continued support. Through their commitment and philanthropic leadership, the law school's role as an innovator in addressing environmental law and policy issues is guaranteed."
The gift will support research and policy fellows; fund student scholarships and a public service fellowship; support outreach, events and speaker series; and provide resources to attract faculty members and address other key priorities. In addition, gifts to the Emmett Center will be matched by the Emmett Foundation on a one-to-one basis, up to $1.5 million.
The gift builds on foundational support for the law school's environmental programs from the Evan Frankel Foundation, the Andrew Sabin Family Foundation, the Anthony Pritzker Family Foundation, the Shapiro Family Charitable Foundation, Luanne Wells and many others.
"The Emmett Center has made great progress, in a relatively short period of time, in developing and promoting innovative solutions to address both the unprecedented environmental challenges we are facing domestically and their worldwide implications," Dan Emmett said. "We are extremely gratified by what has been accomplished so far and know that the center will continue to greatly impact how the most pressing climate concerns are addressed."
UCLA recently was cited on a list of 50 colleges and universities with outstanding programs devoted to climate change and environmental sustainability, with specific praise for the Emmett Center's efforts. It also has helped UCLA Law's environmental program earn a place among the top 10 in U.S. News and World Report's ranking of the leading such programs in the nation.
In addition, the Emmett Center and the law school's Evan Frankel Environmental Law and Policy Program have joined to form the Emmett Institute on Climate Change and the Environment. The new, consolidated institute will house the law school's environmental law and policy work, and will focus on a full range of environmental issues in addition to addressing the challenges posed by climate change. Evan Frankel's seminal gift will be remembered with the creation of a new Evan Frankel Professor of Policy and Practice and through the continued important work of the Emmett/Frankel Fellows.
The Emmett Institute will be led by UCLA law professors Ann Carlson and Ted Parson, who will serve as faculty co-directors; Sean Hecht and Cara Horowitz will be the institute's co-executive directors.
The Emmett family has long been concerned about environmental issues and is actively involved in supporting environmental organizations and initiatives. Dan Emmett is the chairman of Santa Monica-based Douglas Emmett, Inc., one of the largest owners and operators of office and multifamily properties in Los Angeles and Honolulu. He and his companies have been known for their leadership in energy conservation since 1990. He was an adviser to Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger's Green Building Initiative, and he chaired the Real Estate Leadership Council of the State's Green Action Team. He has served as a founding member of a number of environmental nonprofit organizations, including the Los Angeles Waterkeeper, the Santa Barbara Channelkeeper and Environment Now.
UCLA School of Law, founded in 1949, is the youngest major law school in the nation and has established a tradition of innovation in its approach to teaching, research and scholarship. With approximately 100 faculty and 1,100 students, the school pioneered clinical teaching, is a leader in interdisciplinary research and training, and is at the forefront of efforts to link research to its effects on society and the legal profession.