Founded in 1973 by then-Notre Dame president Rev. Theodore M. Hesburgh, the Center for Civil and Human Rights is dedicated to the principle that every human being is created in the image of God and therefore has a dignity that merits respect and protection. In conjunction with its new home in the university's Keough School of Global Affairs and in partnership with Notre Dame Law School, the re-named Klau Center for Civil and Human Rights will prepare undergraduate and graduate students to become champions of civil and human rights globally.
To that end, the gift from the Denver-based couple will support expanded programming, internships, fellowships, and special events at the center; an increase in the size of its faculty and staff; sponsorship of related work that engages others across the university in civil and human rights issues; and external engagement and thought leadership on these issues.
Chair of plumbing, heating, and industrial supplier Hajoca Corp., Rick Klau is a former member of the Hesburgh Libraries Advisory Council and is a current member of the Keough School of Global Affairs Advisory Council. His retail and distribution career includes prior leadership positions at WaterPro Supplies Corp., Ionpure Technologies, and Millipore. Molly Klau dedicates her time to volunteer and philanthropic efforts focused on homelessness, hunger, and education in the metro Denver area. The Klaus are members of Denver-based Constellation Philanthropy, a group of like-minded philanthropists committed to high-impact grantmaking, and members of Notre Dame's Badin Guild.
"The center has a long and distinguished history of promoting and defending civil and human rights in our society and around the world," said Notre Dame provost Thomas G. Burish. "This generous gift will allow us to further strengthen our programs, extend the impact of our work, and enhance our ability to understand and address the complex human rights challenges facing the global community."