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Dec. 7, 2001

Press Contact:
Allegra Young
Director of Communications
UT Law

Senator Bentsen, '42, Honored with Endowed Chair

Chair will be used to attract and retain outstanding faculty members

AUSTIN, Texas — The University of Texas School of Law announced today that the friends of Sen. Lloyd M. Bentsen,'42, have established an endowed Chair in his name. The Lloyd M. Bentsen Chair in Law will be used to attract and retain outstanding teachers and scholars.

A Chair in Law requires an endowment of at least $1 million, and is the highest honor the Law School can bestow on a member of its faculty.

"We are grateful to all of our friends who helped establish The Lloyd M. Bentsen Chair in Law. And, we are grateful to Lloyd for allowing his name to be associated with this endowed chair. By doing so, he honors us, and we resolve to perpetuate the excellence of character and service that Lloyd has always given to the profession and to our nation," said Dean Bill Powers at a dinner in Houston on Tuesday, honoring Senator Bentsen, his wife, B.A., and all the contributors to the Chair.

Bentsen was one of the most powerful members of the U.S. Senate, where he served from 1971 until his appointment as U.S. Secretary of the Treasury in 1993. He began his career in public service as a Texas county judge—the youngest ever—and went on to be elected to the U.S. House of Representatives. In 1988, he was the Democratic Party nominee for vice president of the United States.

Bentsen received his degree from the Law School in 1942, and then volunteered for the Army. He flew combat missions in B-24s from southern Italy with the 449th Bomb Group. At age 23, he was promoted to major and a squadron commander. He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, one of the Army Air Corps', and now the Air Force's, highest commendations for valor. He was also awarded the Air Medal with three oak leaf clusters. The medal and each subsequent cluster represents specific campaigns for which he was decorated. He was promoted to colonel in the Air Force Reserves before completing his military service. After retiring from government service, he joined the firm of Verner Liipfert Bernhard McPherson and Hand as a shareholder in February 1995. In 2001, the Law School honored Senator Bentsen with its Lifetime Achievement Award for his contributions to the legal profession and his remarkable record of public service to the State and the nation.