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Next Wave Scholarships will fuel Tulane Law students’ future

September 25, 2023 12:15 PM
Alina Hernandez ahernandez4@tulane.edu

Max Nathan Jr. (in the center, burgundy shirt) was a beloved adjunct professor at Tulane Law for five decades, and, after his passing in 2021, his family made a generous gift under the Next Wave Scholarship Challenge. Eleven other donor families -- one anonymously -- have since taken the challenge and created more than $3.3 million in scholarships for Tulane Law students.


Some gave because their time at Tulane Law was life-changing; others, for the promise of the next generation of lawyers. A handful celebrated a golden milestone – their 50th reunion – by giving, while a few families chose to make gifts to honor the memory of those they lost, great lawyers trained at Tulane.

Whatever their reasons, 12 donors with ties to Tulane Law School took advantage of the Next Wave Scholarship Challenge thanks to the generosity of Richard Yulman and Katy and Greg Williamson. The Challenge doubles the impact of gifts ranging from $100,000 to $500,000 used to create new endowed scholarships or expand the impact of existing ones.

In all, the gifts of Law School alumni and friends combined with the Yulman match have created $3.35 million in new endowed scholarship funding, securing the future for dozens of law students to attend without worrying about affordability.

“Law school is expensive, there are no two ways about it,” said Interim Dean Sally Richardson. “Scholarships have such a direct and meaningful impact on students.  Some students would not be able to attend Tulane or any law school without a scholarship.”

For some students, receiving a scholarship means graduating debt-free which allows them to pursue their passion without focusing on simply the size of the paycheck they will receive after graduation. 

“There is no way to overstate the importance of endowed scholarships for our students,” said Dean Richardson.

Giving to the Next Wave Scholarship Challenge was particularly meaningful for many donors, and rewarding, too.

“Providing the means for a student to attend Tulane Law School is particularly gratifying for us because in many ways Tulane Law School has been the professional and personal keystone of our family,” said Brent Barriere on behalf of his family, who gave to the Next Wave Scholarships.

“We count five Law School graduates," Barriere continued. "Judy and I met in the Law School; our daughter Jennifer and her husband Daniel dated while students at the Law School; and our daughter Ashley was introduced to her husband Harris because he was a Tulane Law School student. We are truly a Tulane Law School family.”

Regardless of the reasons behind each Next Wave Challenge gift, the endowments tell a story – of the hope alumni and friends of the law school have for the future of the profession.

Barrasso- Barriere Law Scholarship Endowed Fund

Judy Barrasso and Brent Barriere, who met at Tulane Law School, both graduated with the Class of 1981 with honors and distinction and have been stalwart supporters of the law school and mentors to students. 

Judy Barraso and Brent Barriere (both L'81) and
daughters Jennifer (L'12, left) and Ashley (right).

Barrasso is a founding member of the law firm Barrasso Usdin Kupperrnan Freeman & Sarver LLC, where her practice focuses on complex commercial litigation matters, class actions involving insurance coverage and bad faith, director and officer liability, securities fraud, and commercial contracts. She and members of her firm routinely mentor Tulane Law students during internships, and many Tulane students have gone on to work there.

Barrasso has taught as an adjunct professor at the law school as well. She has also served on Tulane Law School's Civil Law Enrichment Council and is a longstanding member of its Law Dean's Advisory Board. In 2018, Barrasso was inducted into Tulane Law School's Hall of Fame in recognition of her distinguished service to the profession and her school.

Barriere has more than 35 years of experience litigating commercial cases, both at Fishman Haygood and at Phelps Dunbar LLP. He represents both creditors and debtors in Chapter 7, Chapter 9, and Chapter 11 bankruptcy matters, prosecutes numerous fraudulent transaction and preference cases, and represents trustees and creditors in actions against directors and officers for breach of fiduciary duty.

Barrasso and Barriere both served as Co-Chairs of their Law Class of 1981 40th Reunion Committee and Barriere also served as Co-Chair of the Tulane Law Homecoming Tailgate Committee.

Jose "Pepe" Barrios Ng

Jose “Pepe” Barrios Ng Law Scholarship Endowed Fund

As a multi-faceted entrepreneur and administrator who has run several universities in Panama, there are very few people who understand the value of access to education better than Jose "Pepe" Barrios. A supporter of Tulane Law scholarship funding since his daughter, Valerie (L'16) came to Tulane in 2012, he funded a new endowed scholarship under the Next Wave program to continue expanding access for all students at Tulane Law School.

Barrios holds a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering from Louisiana State University; a Master of Science in electrical engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology; and a Master of Science in economic engineering from the University of California, Los Angeles. He completed graduate studies in corporate finance at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a Ph.D. at the University of Pennsylvania. In 2002, he joined the Panama Canal management team as the Chief Financial Officer. In 2007, he was appointed Deputy Administrator. He served as the negotiator on behalf of the Panama Canal Authority in the Free Trade Agreement between Panama and the United States.

The Honorable Jerry Brown (L’59) Law Scholarship Endowed Fund

Judge Jerry Brown’s family established the Honorable Jerry A. Brown Law Scholarship Endowed Fund after his passing in 2021. He was recognized as one of the most accomplished bankruptcy judges in the country, respected for his intelligence, expertise, demeanor, and good humor on the bench. He was an excellent student and – in perfect Jerry Brown lore – he liked to tell the story of coming to Tulane Law because he could get clear signals of a radio station in New Orleans that regularly played the jazz music he adored.

Judge Jerry Brown 

He was a top student at Tulane and went on to clerk for the legendary Judge John Minor Wisdom (L'29) during the years that defined Wisdom's crucial civil rights decisions.

He then practiced law for three decades as a partner with Monroe & Lemann. During his time as an attorney, he served as president of the New Orleans Bar Association and the New Orleans Chapter of the Federal Bar Association, and was a mentor to countless jurists, lawyers, and law students. Appointed to the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in 1992, he served a whopping 28 years as a bankruptcy judge.

He loved serving at Tulane Law, too: He was part of the Trial Advocacy program, President of the Tulane Inn of Court, a was a member of the Tulane Law Review Board of Advisory Editors. In 2019, Brown was inducted into the Tulane Law School Hall of Fame.

Dewey Corley, Class of 1970 Law Scholarship Endowed Fund

In 2021, Dewey Corley (L’70) gifted Tulane Law funds in honor of the 50th  reunion of his class – the Class of 1970. After a career as CEO of a number of companies, primarily in the energy sector, Corley has been a private investor for the past 25 years, devoting the majority of his attention to private equity and alternative investment opportunities.  He also serves on the boards of several investment firms and nonprofit organizations.

Corley received a Bachelor of Science degree from Louisiana Tech University School of Business and a Juris Doctor degree from Tulane Law School, where he was Editor-in-Chief of the Tulane Law Review and member of the Order of the Coif. Corley has been an active supporter of the Burkenroad Reports program and was instrumental in establishing the Aaron Seiber Jr. Course in Alternative Investments at the A. B. Freeman School of Business.

William “Jerry” Duck Law Scholarship Endowed Fund

Jerry Duck (L’70) has been a lifelong dedicated Tulanian. He attended Tulane Law in the late 60s, where he won top honors in the Appellate Moot Court honorary round and served as President of the Law Student Body, graduating in 1970. After law school, Duck served as senior counsel for Gulf Oil Corporation in Houston, Texas, and then, after a merger, he worked as Chevron's Senior Counsel of Human Resources in San Francisco. He served as Chevron's Chief Corporate Counsel in 1988, a position he held until his retirement in 2008.

Duck served on Tulane Law School's Faculty Search Committee to conduct an international search for the first McCulloch Chair of Energy Law, and was co-chair of his 50th Tulane Law School Reunion Committee. Although Duck’s reunion class was unable to celebrate in person as they had planned because of the pandemic, he chose to celebrate his 50th Reunion and love of Tulane Law School by endowing the William Duck Law Scholarship with the Next Wave match.

G. Anthony Gelderman Law Scholarship Endowed Fund

Anthony Gelderman (L'86)

A native New Orleanian, “Tony” Gelderman (A&S ’83, L’86) is semi-retired from law and is pursuing his philanthropic passion, which is to invest in local historic properties that require rehabilitation. Along with his wife, Katherine, he is co-principal of KCT Real Estate Ventures and both are enthusiastic Tulane supporters.

Gelderman first endowed a scholarship for Tulane Law students in 2007 and has had the opportunity to meet several of his scholarship recipients through the years. When he saw the announcement of the Yulman match, he jumped at the opportunity to increase the size and impact of his scholarship through the Next Wave Challenge.

His most recent scholarship recipient, Erika Hodges (L'25) is a first-generation law student who is heading into public interest law.

"It would not be possible for me to attend law school without financial assistance from Tulane Law and their scholarship program," said Hodges, who this summer interned with the Orleans Public Defender's Office. "Being awarded the Gelderman Scholarship has afforded me the opportunity to pursue my dream of being a public defender and movement lawyer. I am so passionate about using my law degree to serve my community. Law school has not been traditionally accessible to people without familial wealth and I am grateful for the Gelderman Scholarship for helping me open that gate. "

Earlier in his career, Gelderman served as Chief of Staff and General Counsel to the Treasurer of the State of Louisiana, (1992-1996) and prior to that served as General Counsel to the Louisiana Department of the Treasury. He also coordinated all legislative matters for the State Treasurer during his tenure with the Treasury Department.


He is a former adjunct professor of law at the Tulane Law School where he has taught a course in legislative process. He served as law clerk to U.S. District Judge Charles Schwartz, Jr., Eastern District of Louisiana (1986-1987). Gelderman is a member of the Louisiana State Bar Association, where he served as Chairman for the Young Lawyers Continuing Legal Education Committee between 1990 and 1993, and the American Bar Association. 

Christine Bartlett Hinckley and Robert C. Hinckley Law Scholarship Endowed Fund

In 2021, Bob and Tina Hinckley decided to support Tulane by creating a new endowed scholarship fund at the law school.

Robert Hinckley is a New Orleans native who graduated from Tulane Law in 1976, and who served on Naval active duty for more than 11 years. He practiced law at two Bay Area law firms and served as Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer for Spectra Physics, Inc. Immediately prior to his retirement in 1999, he was Vice President for Strategic Plans and Programs, General Counsel, and Secretary for Xilnix, Inc., the world's leading programmable logic semiconductor supplier.

At Tulane Law, Bob has taught intellectual property law courses as an adjunct professor and co-chaired both his 40th and 45th law reunion committees. He has been a member of the Law Dean's Advisory Board since 2005 and has served as chair of the Board since 2014.

Tina Hinckley (NC ’65) graduated from Newcomb College where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree and was a member of the Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority. She is a seasoned real estate agent and broker, specializing in the high-end residential market in San Francisco. She is currently involved in a variety of community organizations, including ARCS Foundation - Northern California Chapter, The Auxiliary of the Foundation of City College of San Francisco, and the Junior League of New Orleans.

The Hinckleys are current members of the Tulane President's Council and the National Campaign Council of Northern California for the Only the Audacious campaign. Bob also recently joined the Tulane Innovation Institute Council. Bob and Tina are the proud grandparents of Tulane freshman, Jasmine Bartlett (SSE ’27).

Geneva and David Kerstein Law Scholarship Endowed Fund

The Kersteins pledged their gift in honor of David’s Kerstein’s 50th Law School Reunion.

David Kerstein graduated from Tulane Law School in 1971, and immediately began practicing in oil and gas in New Orleans. He is currently President and Chief Executive Officer of both The Helis Interests and Helis Oil & Gas Company in New Orleans, and is president of the Helis Foundation, a charitable foundation focusing on the needs and the art and culture of New Orleans and Louisiana.

He is also President of both the Diana Helis Henry Medical Research Foundation and the Adrienne Hells Malvin Medical Research Foundation, which conduct ground-breaking research on Parkinson's Disease and cancer. David is the recipient of many civic, philanthropic, and professional awards, and he has served on numerous nonprofit and professional boards.

He has served on the Tulane President’s Council since 2010 and on the Tulane Center for Energy Law Advisory Board since its creation in 2019.  David chaired his 50th Tulane Law School Reunion Committee and led his class’s gift effort by creating an endowed scholarship with the Next Wave match. 

Max Nathan Jr. Law Scholarship Endowed Fund

Max Nathan (L'60)

The family of Max Nathan Jr. (L’60) endowed a scholarship in his name to honor him after his passing in 2021. Nathan was one of Tulane Law’s iconic alumni, who practiced law and taught scores of students at Tulane Law over five decades. His life was as colorful as him.

Despite having been accepted to Yale Law, Nathan transferred to Tulane Law for the love of his life, his wife Dotty (NC ’59, SW ’82) and his affection for New Orleans. He graduated at the top of his class, and went on to clerk for the legendary Judge John Minor Wisdom (L’29).

Nathan became one of the nation’s leading estate planning attorneys, literally writing the textbook on Louisiana estate planning that is still in use today. He became a founding member of the law firm of Sessions, Fishman, Nathan & Israel, where his multi-faceted career spanned more than five decades, in which he contributed extensively to the betterment of the law, the teaching of law students, and the improvement of his community. He served on the Louisiana State Law Institute for more than 50 years. For his contributions, Nathan was honored as a member of Tulane Law’s inaugural Hall of Fame class.

Adam Sheldon Law Scholarship Endowed Fund

The family of Adam Sheldon established this endowed scholarship fund in memory of Adam, who died of a sudden heart attack.

Adam Sheldon (L'02)

Sheldon, a New York native, graduated Tulane Law School in 2002 with a passion for public interest law and worked for years serving the public, including through his own law firm.  He began his legal career at the Bronx County District Attorney's office, later transitioning to serve as legal counsel for the New York City Police Department. He then set up his own practice as a criminal defense attorney in the Bronx and served on the Board of Directors committee of the New York City Bar Association.

His family and friends said an endowed scholarship at the school that he loved will promote his ideals: justice is a right for all people, and a possibility for redemption is necessary for society.

“Adam was well-suited for work in criminal justice,” his family wrote in making the gift to Tulane. “He did not see the world in headlines or simple sound bites of law and order versus crime. His work and experience taught him that while people are fallible, they are more than their failings. Adam quickly gained a reputation as a counselor who cared for his clients and could guide them through the system so they could return as productive members of society. He was known to take junior offenders under his wing and explain that his work for them was a graduation present to help get their lives back on track.”

Robert D. Sloan Law Scholarship Endowed Fund

The family of Robert D. ''Bob" Sloan, an attorney and adjunct professor at Tulane Law, made the gift to honor him after his passing in 2020. 

Robert "Bob" Sloan.

Sloan received his J.D. from Harvard Law, but his career and travels took him all over the world and he was fluent in three languages. Sloan, who was beloved at Tulane Law as a longtime adjunct professor and mentor to students in energy law and regulation, was a former executive vice president and general counsel at Entergy Corp. and an accomplished international legal scholar who had worked for the U.S. State Department and for global law firms.

His career path at one time included working for the multinational peacekeeping force as part of the Camp David Accords. After retiring from Entergy, Sloan worked with the Sidley Austin firm and ultimately joined Tulane Law full-time as a Senior Research Fellow with the newly-created Tulane Center for Energy Law. 

He played a significant role in helping the Center expand its impact and international reputation. He taught energy law courses mentored students, and published important scholarship articles on nuclear energy policy. 

David T. Zhang and Yibing Mao Law Scholarship Endowed Fund

David Zhang (L’91) and his wife, Yibing Mao, have given the largest gift to Tulane Law School under the Next Wave Challenge,  – a half-million donation that will double to $1 million under the NextWave Challenge program. 

David Zhang (L'91) and Yibing Mao.

“Everything I have, I owe to Tulane Law School. I received a merit scholarship to attend Tulane, and I am eternally grateful for that opportunity,” Zhang said. “This gift, frankly, is long overdue.”

Zhang is a world-renowned corporate and securities attorney. He is a senior corporate partner at Kirkland & Ellis’ Hong Kong office, and his practice focuses on securities, mergers and acquisitions, and corporate governance. In his 30-plus-year career, he has represented multinational corporations, entrepreneurs, and funds on transactions throughout China and Southeast Asia. This spring, he joined the Board of Tulane, the university’s main governing body.

Mao was global senior vice-president and the Chief Legal Counsel for Asia-Pacific at Marriott International and currently serves on the Board of Directors of Las Vegas Sands Corp. She is a graduate of Duke University Law School.

“All of these scholarships have behind them a person who loved Tulane Law School, who was impacted by the education they received, and wants the future generation of Tulane lawyers to have that same experience,” noted Dean Richardson.  “The pay-it-forward mentality of our alumni, the sharing of the Green Wave experience, this is what makes Tulane Law School so special and why it is such a great time to be a Tulanian.”