Thursday June 30, 2016

Lasting Legacy

Friends and alumni of the University of Dayton have committed more than $600,000 in honor of outgoing President Daniel J. Curran to support the University's new Human Rights Center, a signature program of his legacy.

“Dan had a bold vision for the center, a center based on advocacy in the Catholic, Marianist spirit that animates this university,” said Mark Ensalaco, Human Rights Center director of research, praising the president’s commitment to the center’s mission to be “a voice for the voiceless.”

The gift will go toward the Center's endowment, which will support the faculty and student research, advocacy and education initiatives.

Ensalaco made the gift announcement and comments during a celebratory farewell dinner for Curran earlier this month. Curran will conclude his 14-year tenure as president June 30.

Curran's support for human rights at the University of Dayton began well before he announced the University's commitment to establishing the Human Rights Center during the 2013 Social Practice of Human Rights Conference. The event attracted current and former representatives from the United Nations, Amnesty International USA, Human Rights Watch, and attendees from 15 nations.

He supported the creation of one of the nation's first bachelor's degrees in human rights studies in 2008. Also that year, during an event with the human rights studies program and Center for Victims of Torture, Curran signed a declaration appealing to U.S. President Barack Obama to sign an executive order on prisoner treatment, torture and cruelty. President Obama signed an executive order on prisoner treatment in 2009.

With Curran's leadership, in 2012, the University and the human rights studies program entered into a partnership with Catholic Relief Services to examine slave labor in Brazil. CRS invited the university to participate in recognition of the program's achievements in the areas of human rights education and research.

"I look forward to continuing and honoring Dr. Curran's legacy with our work in the Human Rights Center," said Executive Director Camilo Pérez-Bustillo. "This support will touch human rights advocates around the world as well as the next generation of human rights professionals."

Visit the related links for all of the University's human rights initiatives and recognitions. To learn how you can help build upon this legacy gift for the University of Dayton Human Rights Center, contact University Advancement at 937-229-2912.

For more information, contact Shawn Robinson, associate director of news and communications, at 937-229-3391 or srobinson@udayton.edu.

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