Tuskegee University Receives Donation of Historic Building

JockSmith-fulllengthTuskegee University, the historically Black educational institution in Alabama, has received a donation from the estate of attorney Jock Smith. Smith was a co-founder of the Cochran Firm, led by Johnnie Cochran, the civil rights attorney who successfully defended O. J. Simpson against charges of murder.

Jock Smith graduated from Tuskegee University in 1970 with a bachelor’s degree in history. After earning his law degree at the University of Notre Dame in 1973, Smith taught political science at Tuskegee University. At the time of his death, Smith served on the board of trustees of Tuskegee University. He was the author of the autobiography Climbing Jacob’s Ladder: From Queens to Tuskegee: A Trial Lawyer’s Journey on Behalf of ‘the Least of These’ (New South, 2002).

Smith, who died in 2012, left his historic office property in Tuskegee to the university. The property was built in 1883 and served as a home for most of its history, Jock Smith purchased the property as a home for his law practice in 1995.



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