For his tireless and visionary leadership of a major institution of higher legal education, University of West Los Angeles (UWLA) President Robert Brown received the highest honor from the Langston Bar Association: induction into its Hall of Fame. The ceremony took place Sat., Oct. 27, 2012 in Downtown Los Angeles.
President Brown, who was clearly excited at the induction ceremony to receive this distinction and to represent the university he’s headed for the past 15 years, said: “I was truly surprised by this induction. I am humbled by this award and hope that I can continue to live up to the expectations of those who paved the way before me.”
The president’s modesty has served him well, as he has quietly yet vigorously strived to provide high-quality, affordable education for law students at UWLA. What began as a law school has now grown into a university which, under his tenure, is initiating an online School of Graduate Studies, its goal to offer courses designed to appeal to those seeking to enhance their careers or launch new ones.
Said President Brown of the law school and the graduate school, “We are vested in your success, so our classes and programs give you the very best education, while our staff and administrators assist you with challenges you may face … My vision for UWLA is to prepare students with the educational capability to address and handle the issues and challenges of our ever-evolving world … And now, with the addition of our online School of Graduate Studies, we are expanding that vision to ensure that persons seeking an advanced degree will be able to successfully compete in the workplace.”
The Langston Bar Association has a long and storied history. John Mercer Langston (December 14, 1829 to November 15, 1897) was an American abolitionist and U.S. Congressman from Virginia. He was one of the first African-Americans in the United States to be elected to public office when, in 1855, he was elected as a town clerk in Ohio.
The Langston Bar Association is the oldest bar association in California serving the African American legal community. It started as the “Langston Law Club” in 1943 by attorney Crispus Attucks Wright and other pioneering African American attorneys in Los Angeles. They founded the club in response to other bar associations’ policies of excluding African Americans as members.
The Club later changed its name to the John M. Langston Bar Association, whose motto is “delivering on the promises of justice.”
We staff and students are extremely proud of our leader and president, whom we believe has delivered on the promises of bigger and better things for all of us at UWLA.
In attendance in support of this honor were members of Brown’s family; Dean of the School of Graduate Studies, Dr. Kimberly Johnson; UWLA board members; and a host of special friends, including long-time friend National Basketball Hall of Fame great, and Brown’s fellow UCLA Bruin, Jamaal Wilkes.