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Queen's University

Doctoral Scholarship Commemorates Former Law Dean Daniel Soberman

Through a generous planned gift to Queen's, the Daniel Soberman PhD Scholarship in Constitutional and Federalism Studies has been established...


The scholarship -- to be awarded annually to a full-time doctoral student in Law who has a demonstrated interest in the subject area -- will commemorate Daniel Soberman, LLD ’08, a founding Queen’s Law faculty member (1957) and former Dean (1967-77).

“We at the Faculty are most grateful to the Soberman family for this gift,” says Dean Bill Flanagan. “The award will help us recruit leading doctoral candidates in an area of scholarship where former Dean Soberman left a major legacy.”

Among his many accomplishments over a 44-year career and two-term deanship at Queen’s Law, Soberman championed the introduction of the LLM program, the Faculty’s first graduate program in Law (1969).

He is also fondly remembered for his genuine warmth towards students and his remarkable ability to impart to them his enthusiasm for the law and the legal profession.

Professor Mark Walters, Law ’89, says he thinks the doctoral scholarship is a fitting tribute to his former colleague. “He believed passionately in the value of constitutional scholarship in the shaping of national identity, and he believed firmly in the value of Canada's national identity.”

The Soberman Scholarship was made possible with the proceeds of a charitable life insurance policy set up in 2000 by Dan (d. 2010) and his wife Patricia (MA ’63) (d. 2011). They jointly designated the University as beneficiary. The first award, valued at approximately $6,000, will be made in 2013. 

The Right Honourable David Johnston, Law ’66, LLD ’91, Governor General of Canada, remarked upon his one-time professor and faculty colleague’s enduring legacy to Queen’s Law with reference to a proverb: “Blessed is the man who plants a tree knowing he will not be there to enjoy its shade.” The new Soberman Scholarship ensures that his influence on future generations of legal scholars will continue to flourish.

Planned gifts provide a vital lifeline to advance the learning, discovering, creating, exploring and teaching that happen at Queen’s. Annuities, bequests, insurance, property, stocks, and other planned gifts greatly impact the future of Queen’s and its students -- often in ways benefactors never imagined possible. Gift planning provides options for making a significant future gift while preserving one’s estate for loved ones.

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