UB statement regarding John Kapoor verdict

Editor’s note

In 2019, the SUNY Board of Trustees revoked the naming of John and Editha Kapoor Hall as well as John Kapoor's honorary degree. More information is available in the university’s News Center.

Release Date: May 2, 2019


BUFFALO, N.Y. — The following is a statement from the University at Buffalo regarding today's verdict concerning John Kapoor and Insys Therapeutics Inc.

"The university is aware of Dr. Kapoor’s conviction in federal court today. The leadership of UB is currently reviewing and discussing the impact under UB and SUNY policies pertaining to university namings. The university recognizes the seriousness of this matter and is giving it very careful consideration.

The illegal and unethical activities brought to light during the trial are in stark contrast to UB’s core values and our mission to improve lives, strengthen communities and positively change the world.”

These will be the university’s only comments at this time on the Kapoor verdict and its impact.

Background information:

Why was the UB pharmacy school building named for John Kapoor?

The building that is home to UB’s School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences bears the name of John Kapoor and his deceased wife in recognition of their long-time philanthropic support of the school and the university.

What is the UB policy and process for removing a donor’s name from a building?

UB policy allows for modification of a naming if a future action or event occurs that will cause irreparable injury to the university’s image, reputation, or ability to pursue its mission or if the donor does not fulfill his/her gift commitment at the completion of the agreed-upon payment period.

Under this policy, the “unnaming” of a building follows the same process used for a naming: recommendation by UB’s vice president for university advancement, followed by presidential and UB Council approval, followed by review and approval by the SUNY chancellor and a final decision by the SUNY Board of Trustees.  

What is the university’s timeline for making a decision on removing the Kapoor name?

We are currently reviewing and discussing policy and procedures. There is no firm timeline for a decision but we expect one to be made in a timely manner, with the understanding that there are policies and procedures that must be followed.

Why didn’t the university’s review of its naming policy conclude soon after Kapoor was arrested?

University leadership believed it was prudent to wait until the conclusion of the trial so that the review would consider the full scope of what was brought to light during the trial, and the criminal charges that resulted. 

What is the university doing to address the opiate addiction crisis?

UB is committed to combating the opiate addiction crisis every day in multiple ways and involving researchers, clinicians, educators and students from across the university.

For example, more than 160 researchers at UB are investigating some aspect of addiction, from exploring its basic scientific mechanisms to developing new approaches to patient care.  And our faculty are partnering with several local organizations to develop guidelines for addiction care, educate health care providers and contribute expertise on all aspects of managing, treating and preventing addiction.

Among the many efforts underway at UB:

  • The Opioid Prescriber Training Program offered by the School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences has trained more than 44,000 licensed prescribers in New York State on how to prevent prescription drug overuse, misuse, abuse and overdose.
  • Researchers at UB’s Clinical and Research Institute on Addictions are working with the New York State Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services to identify patients most at-risk for future opioid misuse.
  • The Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences has helped to implement an innovative, cost-effective program at more than a dozen local hospitals that provides medication-assisted treatment to opioid use disorder patients, and then rapidly transitions them into long-term treatment at a community clinic within 48 hours.
  • UB has partnered with Erie County to train current and future health care providers in safe acute-pain management. The partnership educates providers, patients and the community about the risks of opioid pain medications and how quickly addiction can occur when opiates are prescribed -- even for legitimate reasons. The effort involves UB’s health sciences schools – the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, the School of Dental Medicine, the School of Nursing, the School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences and the School of Public Health and Health Professions – as well as the School of Social Work.
  • In April, The Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences and UB’s Clinical Research Institute on Addictions joined the National Academy of Medicine Action Collaborative on Countering the U.S. Opioid Epidemic. In doing so, UB is one of more than 100 organizations nationwide that have reaffirmed its commitment to combatting the opioid crisis through collaborative, interdisciplinary efforts and partnerships.

Media Contact Information

Media Relations (University Communications)
330 Crofts Hall (North Campus)
Buffalo, NY 14260-7015
Tel: 716-645-6969