On February 17, the University of Oklahoma College of Law family lost one of its dearest friends. Edna Asper Elkouri along with her late husband, Professor Emeritus Frank Elkouri, made a permanent and profound impact on OU Law.
A native Pennsylvanian, Edna was born on June 18, 1922. She graduated from the University of Pittsburgh before attending George Washington University to earn her Juris Doctor degree. While a first year law student, Edna met Frank Elkouri, who was then working for the National Wage Stabilization Board in Washington, D.C. After graduating with honors from George Washington University, Edna served for three years on the staff of the Chief Counsel of the Internal Revenue Service.
After a six-year long distance relationship, in 1956, Frank and Edna married and established a home in Norman, where Professor Frank Elkouri had been teaching at the OU College of Law. Edna partnered with her husband on the second, third, and fourth editions of his highly-respected guidebook How Arbitration Works. The couple also co-authored Resolving Drug Issues. In January 2009, Frank and Edna published Stories of the American Civil War: Why and How it Was Fought, with proceeds donated to support medical research in osteoarthritis. The couple boasted how they worked as a team for over 50 years. Professor Frank Elkouri attributed his professional accomplishments to the fact that Edna handled their personal affairs through the years.
Edna was a member of the District of Columbia Bar and was admitted to practice before the U.S. Court of Appeals. She was also a member of the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers.
The Elkouri’s understood the value of blessing others with gifts they had been given. In 2011, the couple gave the single largest gift to the College of Law when they donated $6 million to endow student scholarships. Professor and Mrs. Elkouri said they were grateful to have scholarships while they were in law school, and they hope their gift provides similar opportunities to students today.
This was not the first gift OU Law received from the Elkouri’s. In 2002, they made a major gift to endow the Frank Elkouri and Edna Asper Elkouri Professorship of Law.
Edna’s is remembered as a compassionate, dedicated and generous woman whose presence truly benefitted the lives of everyone who knew her. Enda Asper Elkouri will be deeply missed by the OU College of Law.
OU Law previously produced a video honoring the Elkouris, their incredible careers, and their lasting legacy. A link is posted below in remembrance of Mrs. Elkouri.
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