On January 18, the OU College of Law community lost a very special and dear friend. Professor Emeritus Frank Elkouri was an outstanding scholar and a nationally recognized authority in arbitration. His book “How Arbitration Works” is still widely referenced today in courtrooms and classrooms. Professor Elkouri was an equally talented educator, inspiring students and faculty alike, during his 58 years teaching at OU Law. As an undergraduate at OU, Professor Elkouri Frank excelled in playing clarinet as part of an OU big band, which he also managed.
After learning of Professor Elkouri’s passing, OU President David Boren said, “In the entire history of the OU College of Law, no faculty member has been more dedicated to his students and more generous to the school than Professor Frank Elkouri. I will always feel fortunate to have been able to study under him when I was a law student and to benefit from his international expertise in his field.”
Professor Elkouri graduated from OU Law in 1947, and he never forgot the financial support he received that enabled him to attend law school. He and his wife, Edna Asper Elkouri, gave generously to the College of Law, including a major gift in 2002 to endow the Frank and Edna Asper Elkouri Professorship of Law. In 2010, the emeritus wing of the law school was named the Frank and Edna Asper Elkouri Emeritus Wing to recognize their remarkable contributions.
In 2011, he and Edna gave the largest one-time gift ever given to the College of Law, with the entire gift going to endow student scholarships. This $6 million gift touched us deeply, not only because of the opportunities it provided to current and future law students, but also because of the spirit in which it was given. It truly was a gift from the heart.
A Sooner Lawyer article and video were produced during that time, honoring the Elkouris, their remarkable careers, and their legacy. I have posted links to both items below in remembrance of Professor Frank Elkouri. We miss him greatly.
“A Gift from the Heart: The Historic Elkouri Contribution,” (PDF, opens in new window) Sooner Lawyer, Spring/Summer 2011 issue
“A Tribute to Frank and Edna Elkouri” video: http://youtu.be/itFtFKAI9Ec (Opens in new window)
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OU Law Conversations: Dean Emeritus Andrew Coats
What led you to OU Law? I have wanted to go to law school since I was a teenager. I was active in speech contests and enjoyed making oral presentations. When I was in high school, I would go downtown and watch some of the trials at the courthouse, so, I got acquainted with the courtroom rather early. I obtained a Navy scholarship to go to OU. I was a regular Navy midshipman then I served three years in the far east before coming back to law school. I wanted to attend law school and came back to OU.
OU Law Conversations: Robert Barnes
What led you to OU Law? OU Law has been part of my family since the 1920s. My great uncle was Dr. Maurice Merrill, a 1922 graduate of OU Law who then earned a Doctorate in Law from Harvard University in 1925. Merrill taught at OU Law for 30 years, published numerous seminal works in oil and gas law, constitutional law, administrative law and the law of Notice. While still in his twenties, Merrill published the seminal treatise Implied Covenants in Oil and Gas Law, which has been a cornerstone of my cases. In law school, I lived with Uncle Maurice and marveled at his longhand scrawl which was literally final copy in its first draft form. In my mind, he will always be ten times the lawyer that I ever became.