Successor to Herman B Wells, Elvis Jacob Stahr Jr. was inaugurated as president of Indiana University on November 19, 1962. Dr. Stahr arrived at IU with an already extensive resume, having been a Rhodes Scholar, a practicing attorney, provost of the University of Kentucky and University of Pittsburgh, president of the West Virginia University, and Secretary of the Army under John F. Kennedy. These prestigious awards were established in his namesake to honor five IU seniors that have excelled academically while serving as active campus and community leaders.
For 2021, we would like to honor Graham with the Elvis J. Stahr Award to honor his achievements and service to the IU community.
Graham’s Academic Achievements
Graham will graduate with a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy from the College of Arts and Sciences and a Bachelor of Science in Law and Public Policy from the O’Neill School of Public and Environmental Affairs. Graham has interned for a sitting United States Senator and the Boone County Prosecutor’s Office. He also started a blog, “Benchwarmers,” with 5,000 readers; in it, he’s analyzed over 50 decisions of the U.S. Supreme Court and the fourteen federal circuit courts of appeals. He is a Founders Scholar, a nominee for the 2020 Harry S. Truman Scholarship, a finalist for the 2018 Kathleen M. Lenkowsky Award, and a member of the 2017-2018 IU Civic Leaders Center cohort. During his senior year, Graham worked as a research assistant for Professor Beth Cate, for whom he researched philosophical and legal concepts of justice, collaborative governance and equity in American statutory and case law. This summer, Graham will be working at the Hudson Institute in Washington D.C. for a year before starting law school in Fall 2022.
Graham’s Campus and Community Involvement
His campus involvements include serving as an Associate Justice and Chief Justice on the IU Student Government Supreme Court, sitting as a student panelist on the University Hearing Commission and Academic Review Board, and serving in various leadership roles in the Briscoe Residence Hall. Graham also advised the IU Division of Student Affairs’ development of an implementation plan focused on safely restarting student engagement experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Graham had many outstanding professors here at Indiana University that supported him and challenged him to reach new heights. When reflecting on those professors that he was grateful to learn from he said:
While there are many individuals for whom I am grateful, I am especially indebted to four. Professor John Karaagac, thank you for challenging me to do better. Professor Tim O’Connor, thank you for teaching me how to think. Professor Tim Lemper, thank you for being my mentor and friend. And Professor Beth Cate, thank you for leading me to my future.”