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Release date:
Feb. 22, 2002
Contact: Elaine Justice, Associate Director: 404-727-0643 or

Emory Law School to Honor Bobby Jones as Distinguished Alumnus

Emory University School of Law will honor the late golf legend Robert Tyre "Bobby" Jones Jr. with the Distinguished Alumni Award at the Law Day luncheon Saturday, March 23. The event will be held on the West Terrace of the law school’s Gambrell Hall.

Jones attended Emory Law School from 1926 to 1927, and was admitted to the Georgia Bar shortly thereafter. In this period, it was not unusual to take the bar exam and be admitted to practice law without the prerequisite J.D. or LL.B. degrees.

"Bobby Jones is one of our most distinguished alumni," says interim Dean Peter Hay. "It is our pleasure to bestow the law school’s highest honor on Mr. Jones in the year of the 100th anniversary of this great lawyer’s and athlete’s birth. We could not find a more worthy candidate."

Dr. Bobby Jones IV said his grandfather would be overwhelmed by such an award. "On behalf of my family, I am honored that Emory Law School has decided to give its Distinguished Alumni Award to my grandfather. He was very proud to be a lawyer, and his love for his profession was due, in large part, to the principles of law that he learned at Emory." Dr. Jones will accept the award on behalf of the family during Law Day.

Jones played in his first major golf tournament in 1916. During his career, he competed in 31 major championships, and either won titles or reached the semi-finals in 20 of those tourneys. He claimed the U.S. Amateur title five times, the U.S. Open four times, the British Open three times and the British Amateur once.

In 1926, Jones became the only amateur to win both the U.S. and British Open championships in the same year. As a member of the Georgia Bar, he won his first federal case before winning the Grand Slam of Golf in 1930. That achievement still stands today, since no golfer has been able to win the Grand Slam in a single year.

Jones’s greatest achievement in golf was his design of Augusta National. Considered one of the best golf courses in the world, Augusta is home to the tournament he founded, The Masters.

Jones stopped playing golf in 1948, but continued as a partner at the Atlanta law firm Jones, Bird & Howell, which in 1982 merged with Alston, Miller & Gaines to become Alston & Bird. Jones died in 1971.

In 1976, the Robert T. Jones Jr. Scholarship was established in his memory, which seeks to recognize individuals who will be excellent representatives of Emory at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland. Since its inception, the scholarship has sent 100 Emory graduates to St. Andrews and hosted the same number of its students in return.

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