Giving Back to Yale Law

Jim Goetz ’68 LL.B. in his hometown of Ennis, Montana, with Johnny, a  Newfoundland Landseer, and Mickey, an Irish Spotted Newfoundland

I treasure my three years at Yale Law School (YLS) as among the best of my life. I did my undergraduate work at Montana State University in Bozeman, and it was an honor to go on to Yale for my law degree. At Yale, I received a first-rate legal education and made friends who enrich my life to this day. The outstanding faculty and my exceptional classmates made my experience at Yale intellectually fascinating. I returned to Bozeman after graduation to practice environmental law and general litigation, and it is here that I have made my home. But my ties to YLS are as strong as ever.

Every year, I take immense pride in the fact that YLS is ranked number one in the country, and I want to do all I can for Yale. My wife, Jill Davenport, and I make modest yearly contributions to the Law School, and at my fortieth reunion, we included a more generous gift in our estate plan for the general purposes of the school. I trust the administration to decide how best to use our bequest when it is received. YLS is home to so many diverse and worthwhile programs and stellar students, I know that no matter where our gift goes, it will have a positive impact.

I want my gifts to send a message to students and faculty that the work they do is important. The friends they make at YLS will touch them for the rest of their lives. That’s why I look forward to returning next year for my fiftieth reunion.

Jill and I feel strongly that a significant part of our estate should go to educational and charitable causes, and Yale is at the top of our list. What better way to pay back YLS for what it has given to me?