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UB Law School Graduates Establish Fund in Honor of Former Professor Louis Del Cotto

By Ilene Fleischmann

Release Date: July 2, 2004

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Former students of Louis Del Cotto have established an endowment fund in his honor.

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Seven former students of Louis A. Del Cotto, J.D. '51, a highly respected tax authority and professor emeritus in the University at Buffalo Law School, have established an endowment fund -- kicking it off with $75,000 in gifts and pledges -- to honor the man they credit with providing the foundation for their own successful careers.

An expert in the intricacies of the tax code, statutes and regulations, Del Cotto taught at the law school for more than 40 years, redefining the curriculum in tax law. In addition to his teaching, Del Cotto collaborated on the Bittker Federal Income Estate and Gift Taxation treatise, was counsel to the New York State Commission on Estates, and served on the New York State Society for Certified Public Accountants and New York University/Internal Revenue Service Board of Advisors, along with a host of other tax panels and institutes.

In appreciation for his devotion to the law and his dedication to teaching, his former students have created the Louis A. Del Cotto Fund for Excellence in Tax and Tax-Related Studies and are urging fellow alumni to join the effort.

"Professor Del Cotto was pivotal in my life and the lives of so many other successful UB Law School graduates," said Dianne Bennett, J.D. '75, chair, Hodgson Russ LLP. "He helped launched the careers of his former students, many of whom have gained prominence and stature in the legal profession and assumed leadership roles in their communities."

In addition to Bennett, the other fund-raising committee members are Paul R. Comeau '73, Barry K. Gassman '71, David E. Jacobson '74, Barbara D. Klippert '75, Erik D. Lindauer '81, and Richard L. Reinhold '76.

Nils Olsen, dean of UB Law School, noted, "During my tenure of more than 25 years at the law school, Lou Del Cotto, along with Al Mugel, Ken Joyce and Bill Greiner, created a tax program with a national reputation that profoundly affected the careers of many of our graduates, many of whom now lead their firms in tax law. Lou and his wife, Bee, are close personal friends of all of us at the law school, so it is particularly appropriate that we honor him -- just as he brought honor to us for so many years."

The fund will supplement resources for research and instruction. In the initial years, Olsen and Kenneth F. Joyce, SUNY Distinguished Teaching Professor in the UB Law School, will determine how the funds will be allocated. Preference will be given to lectures by visiting faculty and tax practitioners, scholarships for second- and third-year students intending to focus their careers in the area of tax, and faculty scholarly activity in tax and tax-related areas.

For more information or to make a gift, contact Deborah J. Scott, vice dean for development in the UB Law School, at djscott@buffalo.edu or (716) 645-2113. Gifts also may be made online at http://www.law.buffalo.edu/giving.