A Tradition of Giving
Leonard Barrack is the senior and founding partner of Barrack, Rodos & Bacine, a firm which litigates securities and antitrust class actions and complex commercial litigation across the country.
Since the enactment of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act in late 1995, Barrack has been appointed lead or co-lead counsel in dozens of securities cases throughout the U.S., including three of the largest case settlements in securities class action history: In re WorldCom, Inc. Securities Litigation, before Hon. Denise L. Cote in the Southern District of New York, one of the largest securities class action lawsuits in the country with a recovery of more than $6.13 billion for the class; In re Cendant Corporation Litigation, before Hon. William H. Walls in the District of New Jersey, in which Barrack recovered more than $3.18 billion for the class; and In re McKesson HBOC, Inc. Securities Litigation, before Hon. Ronald M. Whyte in the Northern District of California, which settled for $1.0425 billion.
Barrack was also the first to represent an institutional investor, the Pennsylvania Public School Employees’ Retirement System, as lead plaintiff in two major securities class actions initiated in early 1996. A leader in Philadelphia’s civic and political circles, Barrack is also the former national finance chairman of the Democratic National Committee and is currently the president of the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia. His philanthropic efforts have included major gifts to Temple Law, including support for a significant expansion of the law school and the establishment of the Barrack Public Interest Fellowship Program.
“My commitment to Temple goes way back and is founded on common values,” says Barrack, a Philadelphia native who attended Temple University as an undergraduate before entering the law school. “My parents immigrated to the U.S. in 1923, and they placed profound value in education as a means to achieving the American dream. I hope my contribution in some small way makes that dream available to present and future generations.” Since 1994, when the Barrack Public Interest Fellowship Program was established, 145 students have benefited from loan repayment totaling more than $700,000, removing the financial obstacles that so often discourage beginning lawyers from entering public interest jobs after graduation. “Len’s vision in creating this program has allowed hundreds of law graduates to pursue work in some of the most compelling public advocacy agencies,” says Dean JoAnne A. Epps. “It has allowed our graduates to pursue fulfilling careers, and at the same time has insured legal services to thousands of individuals who otherwise might have been denied. It is a model of philanthropy that is indicative of Len Barrack’s generosity in so many areas.”
In 2010, the Student Public Interest Network (SPIN) acknowledged Leonard Barrack’s generosity by honoring him with the Robert J. Reinstein Public Interest Award, which was presented by Professor Reinstein at the annual SPIN auction. “Mr. Barrack’s commitment to helping students enter public interest work is especially crucial in the current economic climate,” say SPIN auction chair Aditi Aggarwal ’11. “We applaud his many philanthropic efforts, and especially his leadership in establishing a loan forgiveness program that has made so much difference for so many Temple graduates.”
Leonard Barrack’s commitment and generosity also made possible a significant law school expansion when in 2002, the historic College Hall was renovated and renamed the Morris and Sylvia Barrack Hall. Barrack Hall is located just a block from the law school’s main building, Klein Hall, and adjacent to the Shusterman Hall conference center. It houses lecture halls, seminar rooms, student lounges and organization offices, as well as the offices for Student Affairs, Admissions, and Career Planning. In that same year, Barrack was appointed by then chairman of the board Howard Gittis and then president David Adamany to chair Temple’s capital campaign—the university’s very first effort at a comprehensive capital campaign. With and ambitious goal of $350 million, the campaign recently closed at $380 million.
Today, Barrack is a member of the board of trustees of Temple University and for many years chaired the board’s academic affairs committee. The magnitude of Barrack’s overall contribution to the university was recognized at the 2010 University Founder’s Day, where he received the Alumni Distinguished Service Award.