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Flom Lectures

Claire Flom graduated from P.S. 115 and George Washington High School in New York City. She received her bachelor’s degree cum laude from Cornell University in 1943. During the World War II period she also became involved in the movement providing resources and food to French colonies for the Free French Government. Following her graduation from Cornell, she entered the field of interior design and was active in this profession from 1947 to 1958. In 1958, she married Joseph H. Flom, and they made their home in Manhattan where, together, they raised three children: Nancy, Peter, and Jason.

In 1965, Claire founded the Gateway School in Manhattan, a special education facility for young
children with learning disabilities, which she founded because she disagreed with several professionals’ assessments of her son’s ability. She was an administrator at the school for 10 years.

She was always involved in activities that would make New York a better place to live and raise a family. She served as a Trustee of the Emerson School from 1968 to 1970, and in 1978 as the Chairman of the Committee on Supportive Services of the Federation of Jewish Philanthropies of New York.

Her keen interest in education also led her to found the New York Alliance for the Public Schools, a group dedicated to bringing the resources of universities and the business and professional communities to the public schools of New York City. Another objective was to rebuild the public constituency for public education by projecting an accurate image of these
schools in their diversity.

Claire became intimately involved with Fordham University beginning in the 1970s and served for four terms on the Board of Trustees, with individual service on the Academic Affairs and Executive Committees, and served a term as Vice Chair of the Board.

When the Feerick Center for Social Justice was created at Fordham Law School in 2006, Claire Flom was an enthusiastic founding Advisory Board member and attended every meeting. She was exceptionally committed to the mission of the Center providing guidance and ideas to a remarkable extent.

The Claire Flom Memorial Lecture honors these contributions to Fordham and celebrates the memory of an enthusiastic advocate of education.

Prior Flom Lecturers

2009 | Honorable Joel I. Klein, Chancellor, New York City Department of Education 

2010  Honorable Judith Kaye, Former Chief Judge, State of New York; Counsel, Skadden Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom