Passion for Justice

Stephen Hamill ’78 Honored as 2013 Alum of the Year

Hamill was recognized as an inspiration as a lawyer and engaged community member, and for his and his family’s generosity to the USF School of Law, enhancing students’ skills training activities through diverse clinics and faculty opportunities.

“Steve Hamill is unsurpassed in his devotion, commitment, support, and love for USF—our School of Law and the entire University,” said Dean John Trasviña. “Steve has enabled the School of Law to think bigger and longer term, and he has provided not just good ideas but the encouragement and support to make big things happen. He exemplifies giving back to support the next generation of young lawyers and in that regard is not only Alum of the Year but a model for all.”

Hamill has 20 years of experience in business and real estate law followed by private practice. A native of St. Louis, Mo., who grew up in the San Fernando Valley, he is now the general manager of California and U.S. Communities, which provides public financing and public purchasing programs to government agencies. In addition to serving as a trustee of the University of San Francisco since 2010, he has been a youth soccer coach and referee for 30 years. He also has served as a member and chair of the Carondelet High School, in Concord, board of directors for six years. 

“Steve brings a rare and rich blend of talents that only the wise possess,” said USF President Father Stephen A. Privett, S.J. “Business acumen and strategic thinking coupled with a key sensitivity to the soul of the university, its commitment to challenging students to use their Jesuit education not simply in furtherance of their own careers, but also to the advantage of the weak and defenseless. And these qualities he has consistently displayed over a lifetime of professional service.”

In presenting the award, former dean and Professor Jeffrey Brand said “The Hamill family as an anchor of support for the law school is not hyperbole. It’s supported by hard evidence in good and hard times. ” Brand described Hamill’s early support for reconstruction of Kendrick Hall and the clinics program, expanding the faculty by becoming one of the first donors in the history of the law school to commit to funding a faculty chair, joining the USF Board of Trustees, and most recently jumpstarting a fellows program to help provide the skills training that modern legal education demands.

“I’m honored, I’m humbled, I’m grateful, and I’m thankful,” Hamill said. “And I believe that working together with a shared hope and a shared inspiration that there is no challenge we cannot meet and overcome in the pursuit of a better future for this law school.”

Emcee and member of the Board of Counselors Molly Lane ’90 shared a moving message sent by Lindsay Hamill Penkower ’05, Hamill’s daughter who was unable to attend the event. “With your honesty, kindness, and positivity, you continue to inspire me every day, as well as those who are luck enough to have crossed paths with you. We feel so fortunate to have you in our lives and the world is just a better place with you in it,” she wrote. 

The event received support from benefactor Ferrari-Carano Vineyards and Winery and sponsors The Arns Law Firm, Hanson Bridgett, Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP, and The Veen Firm, PC.