The Hon. Henry N. R. Jackman, LLB 1956This donor profile is from the Fall/Winter 2011 issue of Nexus.

The Honourable Henry N.R. Jackman and the University of Toronto have been intertwined for more than half a century.  Jackman—commonly known as Hal—is a former Lieutenant-Governor of Ontario, and a former chancellor of U of T. But he also grew up on the school's venerable campus, completing high school and earning his BA (1953), and LLB (1956), within its grand and historic walls. Jackman went on to build a very successful business, but he never strayed far from the institution that helped to raise him.

"It's the best university in Canada," he declares, firmly. "A great city deserves a great university. And we have it."

Now 79 and officially retired, Jackman is also known as U of T's biggest single benefactor, donating millions to the university and its various schools and faculties over his lifetime. He still counts some former law school classmates among his good friends, and recently attended a reunion of his 1956 graduating class.

"It was a very good education, and we had very good professors," Jackman remembers. "It was a very intellectually stimulating experience."

Among the missions he hopes the school takes on in the future:  an effort to reduce the climbing costs of litigation and other legal services.  If any law school is up to that challenge, Jackman says, this one is.

"We have better people than the other people," he says.  "I'm a big admirer of (Dean Mayo Moran). I think she's taking things in the right direction.”