UB law students with a global perspective have Lauren D. Rachlin to thank for their expanded opportunities to work and study abroad.
Rachlin, an expert in international business law and a pioneer in international law in New York State, originated the New York State Bar Association’s internship-abroad program through its International Law Section. The program, now in its fifth year, places UB School of Law students in legal internships in such far-flung places as Thailand, South America, Prague and Vienna.
Rachlin, a partner most recently in the Buffalo law firm Barclay Damon, continued to work full time until his death on March 18. He was 87 years old.
Now a major gift from his family, led by his wife of 61 years, Jean, will ensure that Buffalo law students will continue to be exposed to international law through placements in law firms worldwide.
The $100,000 gift will endow annual fellowships to support students’ travel to these placements. Additional contributions in honor of Rachlin are also being accepted for the fund, designated as the Lauren D. Rachlin Esq. International Fellowship Fund.
“As a family we knew that we wanted to do something in his name,” Jean Rachlin says. “He was always interested in international law and built a practice working cross-border in Canada and the United States-- and he was always encouraging students to explore this as a specialty. And of course, the way to do it is to give them the opportunity to have an internship. He knew lawyers everywhere – he had connections all over the world – and he was able to facilitate a lot of internships.”
The International Law Section held its annual meetings in conjunction with chapters all over the world, Mrs. Rachlin says, and as a couple they traveled far and wide. “You name it, we’ve probably been there over the years,” she says.
A graduate of Harvard Law School, Lauren Rachlin was deeply involved in UB School of Law over the years. He helped initiate the law school’s Oral History Project, which collects interviews with alumni, faculty, administrators and friends of the school, and helped to fund the project with a gift in honor of his father, Harry A. Rachlin ’27. Also in his father’s honor, Rachlin endowed the Harry A. Rachlin Prize in Real Property Law and Real Estate Transactions, awarded each year at Commencement.
Rachlin received a Distinguished Alumnus Award from the School of Law in 2013.
“He worked tirelessly and loved it,” said James Domagalski, co-managing partner in Barclay Damon’s Buffalo office. “That’s how he was wired. He just loved being a lawyer and loved the interplay between the U.S. and Canadian markets, and he was passionate in building something with us.”