Benjamin L. Crump College of Law unveiled at St. Thomas University

MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. – The only law school named for a Black man in this country is in Texas: the Thurgood Marshall School of Law at Texas Southern, an HBCU.

That was, until, Wednesday.

A historic unveiling took place at the St. Thomas University College of Law, which is now the Benjamin L. Crump College of Law.

The occasion was marked by official proclamations and celebrity congratulations.

“Ben has been an absolutely spectacular friend and guide, and that’s why it was important for me to be here with him today,” said actor Will Smith.

Crump was surrounded by family, partners and friends.

“I am the most blessed man on the face of the earth today,” Crump said.

Perhaps the most high-profile attendees at Wednesday’s unveiling were his clients.

The deaths of their loved ones have sparked protests, movements and calls for social justice and reform.

“Salute him and let him know that I’m proud of him for the work that he not only did for the Trayvon Martin Foundation, but that he did for so many other families,” said Sybrina Fulton, Martin’s mother.

Added Philonise Floyd, George Floyd’s brother: “You have to come and support good people, because we’re stronger in numbers, so we all stick together.”

Said Andre “Buddy” Locke, Amir Locke’s father: “I’m thankful that he’s helped our family, and that he continues to help other families.”

The group also included Tyre Nichols’s parents.

Last night, they attended the president’s State of the Union address.

On Wednesday, they said they would not have passed up an invitation, either.

“If the law doesn’t protect the least of us, then it doesn’t protect any of us, and we together, brothers and sisters, we have to make it equal justice under the law,” Crump said.

Wednesday’s unveiling also came with $3.5 million in donations to the new Crump College of Law, including a $1 million donation from Crump’s firm.

School officials said they’re already planning to build a new law school facility on campus to accompany the new name and the Crump Center for Justice that was previously established.

About the Author:

Layron Livingston made the move from Ohio's Miami Valley to Miami, Florida, to join the Local 10 News team.