University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology

Byrne, Jerome C.

Jerome C. Byrne
Past Secretary 
Louis J. Kolb Society of Fellows, Penn Museum

Jerry Byrne, a close friend of Peter Paanakker, and a lawyer at Gibson, Dunn and Crutcher, was one of the founders of the Kolb Foundation and served as a Director and Secretary until 2000. He graduated from Aquinas College and went to Harvard Law School, where he was an editor of the Law Review, graduating magna cum laude. Jerry, a specialist in labor-management relations, joined the Los Angeles law firm of Gibson, Dunn and Crutcher in 1951 and worked there for more than 40 years. He is perhaps most famous for his recommendations concerning the September 1964 eruption of the Free Speech Movement on the Berkeley campus. The University of California Board of Regents hired Jerry as special counsel to talk with students, faculty, and administrators in California in order to determine how to govern at a time of protests over the Vietnam War. He quickly produced the Byrne Report, a thorough study recommending reorganization allowing for greater autonomy for separate campuses and greater freedoms for students and faculty. Jerry was also a Director and President of the Constitutional Rights Foundation. Jerry passed away in 2001.

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