The largest donor to the University of Alabama is getting his $21.5 million back. The school’s Board of Trustees today voted to return the cash from Hugh Culverhouse, Jr., after he suggested businesses and students should avoid the state and its institutions due to its new abortion law.
Culverhouse’s name was pried off the university law school sign. He had pledged $26.5 million to the school to be paid over four years. He also will receive interest accrued on then $21.5 million, the school announced.
“As part of an ongoing dispute, last week Hugh Culverhouse, Jr. asked for the return of $10 million, repeating numerous demands about the operations of the University of Alabama School of Law,” according to a statement from the UA System as reported in the university’s newspaper The Crimson White.
Culverhouse has told the news website al.com: “I cannot stand by silently and allow my name to be associated with a state educational system that teaches students law that clearly conflicts with the United States Constitution and Federal law, and which promotes blatant discrimination.”
“The action taken by the Board today was a direct result of Mr. Culverhouse’s ongoing attempts to interfere in the operations of the Law School,” said Vice Chancellor for Communication, Kellee Reinhart. “That was the only reason the Board voted to remove his name and return his money.”
According to the publication Florida Politics, Culverhouse’s father an officer of Planned Parenthood in Jacksonville, Fla., during the 1950s.
The $26.5 million pledge was the largest in the university’s history. There was still $5 million of the gift pending.
The university acknowledged a dispute with the donor but claimed the decision about his donation is related only to concerns about matters at the school, not at the statehouse.