Discussions about the sale of the Touro Law Center to Stony
never made it past the preliminary stage, Stony Brook
president Shirley Strum Kenny said yesterday.
"We had very preliminary talks," Kenny said. "We were certainly
not at the point of negotiating."
Bernard Lander, founder and president of Touro College, whose main campus is
said yesterday he would never sell the law school. The college operates the
Jacob D. Fuchsberg Law Center in Central Islip.
"I never met with anybody or spoke to anybody at the state
university," Lander said in an interview. "I had one meeting with
Sen. [Kenneth] LaValle. Period. I never negotiated with anybody." Lander
said that when Touro law school dean Lawrence Raful asked him for his opinion
and that of the school's board, "I said the law school charter is never
for sale. Period."
Talk of a possible sale surfaced in early February in an effort to make Stony
Brook the second university after the University of Buffalo in the State
University of New
system to have a law school.
Kenny confirmed she and Lander had never met to discuss the law school.
"There were conversations with people in the law school," she said,
"but they were very preliminary discussions. We never got into any
Kenny said those discussions did serve a purpose: They revived the idea of
adding a law school at Stony Brook.
"Dr. Kenny and I have agreed to move forward and look at and explore the
possibility of establishing our own law school at Stony Brook," said
"It's not a new concept," Kenny said, noting that university
officials first considered the addition of a law school in the 1970s and then
again in the 1980s. "But now people feel it's the last piece of putting
together a major research university. ... It's something we will be
considering very seriously."
Though no agenda has been put in place, Kenny said a committee will be formed
to study the feasibility of building a law school. "I think there is a
lot of interest now in the possibility of developing a law school at Stony
Brook. Now, nothing has happened on that score."